Jonathan Prince, the Spotify executive who helped lead the company’s ill-fated policy against “hateful conduct” last year, has left the company to join the work-flow platform Slack, according to his LinkedIn profile. A rep for Spotify did not immediately respond to Variety’s request for comment; the news was first reported in Music Business Worldwide.
Prince’s profile states that last month he became Slack’s Head of Strategic Communications and Senior Advisor to the CEO. Since 2014 he had been Spotify’s VP, head of marketplace and content policy and vp, global head of communications and public policy.
Prince, who previously held advisory roles in the Clinton and Obama administrations, was described by a source as being at the “center” of Spotify’s controversial policy against “hateful conduct” last year, which essentially amounted to banning the music of two artists — R. Kelly and XXXTentacion — from the platform’s playlists. The announcement met with immediate backlash from the media, artists, legal experts and even, according to sources, several senior Spotify executives, and was quickly walked back in the face of fierce criticism over its vaguely stated criteria, the impracticality of policing it, Spotify’s seeming hubris in making such determinations, and especially the fact that it has thus far targeted only black males who have been accused but not convicted of serious crimes.
Prince was also with Spotify at the time of its public sparring with Taylor Swift over royalty rates, and had been an outspoken critic of Apple Music’s “app tax,” in which the company takes a 30% commission on every subscription sold on its App Store.