Spotify launched its Spotify Kids app partly to reassure parents that their children would not encounter ripe phraseology when streaming music. Now Deezer is also looking into the challenge of ensuring family listening doesn’t accidentally turn the air a distinct shade of blue.
The team behind its Spleeter stem-isolating tool have added in a ‘Keyword Spotting System’ that can identify rum language, and flag songs as explicit. Manuel Moussallam, Deezer’s director of research, has posted a blog explaining the how and the why of it all. “When it comes to figuring out what explicit lyrics are, there is no general consensus,” he writes. “It’s obviously a cultural issue, with lots of considerations about the intended audience and the listening context.” He says the issue is at the ingestion stage as label staff are the ones making the call if a track should be tagged with an “E” for explicit or not. “When no tag is provided, it can mean that the song is suitable for all audiences, but it can also mean that no decision was made on the label’s side regarding its explicitness,” says Moussallam. “There is a substantially large part of our catalog that falls under this category.” Deezer says this tool is there to assist, rather than replace, the person tasked with tagging songs for swearwords.