Four years on, Spotify’s ‘Discovery Mode’ is taking shape

Spotify’s ‘Discovery Mode’ lets artists pick songs for targeted promotion, but participation means accepting lower royalties.


While this obviously risks reducing earnings for struggling artists and undermines the value of music, Spotify has been defending Discovery Mode, citing its ability to facilitate audience expansion for artists. Since the initial announcement of the implementation of the tool in 2020, Spotify has been expanding the model into Daily Mix playlists since January 3rd, 2024, and is continuously encompassing artist-specific, decade-based, mood, and genre mixes. 


The streaming service is rolling out a thinly veiled pay-for-play scheme, contend the musicians and songwriters of the Artist Rights Alliance


This move challenges Spotify’s commitment to fair recommendations, introducing money as a factor over quality and listener preferences. It contradicts Spotify’s earlier promises of impartiality and support for artists. The platform, once hailed for its support of artists, now faces criticism for prioritizing profit over integrity. Artists and industry stakeholders urge Spotify to uphold its founding principles and consider the welfare of creators, especially during challenging times like the pandemic. They call for growth strategies aligned with Spotify’s original values, seeking continued collaboration as partners.