Members of the House of Representatives appear to have some quiet days ahead as officials have banned the use of streaming music service Spotify while on the job. Despite the fact that Spotify isn’t a peer-to-peer file sharing program like the original Napster and similar offerings, it is being treated as if it were a security threat.
A spokesperson for the Office of the Chief Administration Officer (CAO) told Politico that their IT policy generally prohibits the use of peer-to-peer technologies while operating on the secure network. The spokesperson went on to say that while Spotify is currently not authorized, the CAO has and will continue to work with outside vendors to enable popular services that facilitate member communication.
Spotify issued their own statement on the matter, suggesting that it is a sad day when a few bureaucrats can block the nation’s leaders from enjoying free and secure access to over 20 million songs. A spokesperson for the company said music is a common language that all political parties speak and should be used to bring the legislators together so they can solve serious issues facing the country.
The representative further noted that they hope the House of Representatives will see their error and unblock Spotify, but not before pointing out that both President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney used the service as part of their voter outreach program while campaigning for the top spot in the White House last year.
It’s worth highlighting the fact that even the RIAA disagrees with the house ban. Chairman and CEO Cary Sherman told the CAO in a recent letter that these types of services are safe and secure. Assuring access to them, Sherman said, showcases an important public policy goal of promoting legal and safe digital providers.