SPOTIFY has added Scots to their list of languages, in a major victory for a campaigning musician.

In December, Iona Fyfe protested the streaming giant’s omission of the leid from their listing of all UK minority languages. While Manx, Irish Gaelic, Cornish, Welsh and Scottish Gaelic are all recognised, Scots was not.

Previously when Fyfe asked Spotify to allow her music to be listed as Scots, they told her to make do by “selecting the language closest to it”.

For several years the award-winning singer, who was named Scots Performer of the Year at the Scots Language Awards 2020, has had to identify her music as English.

In her letter she accused the platform of “blatant undermining of a distinct and unique language”, which she described as “alarming”.

She said Scots was recognised under the European Charter for Minority Languages and provides its ISO 639-2 language code (SCO). She said this “will be of use [to Spotify] should [it] choose to recognise the Scots language”.

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Fyfe’s campaign was backed by SNP MSP Clare Adamson, who tabled a motion in the Scottish Parliament which received cross-party support.

There was silence from the subscription music service until February when Fyfe, while virtually representing Scotland at the Folk Alliance International showcases in Kansas, met with Laura Ohls, senior editor at Spotify. 

This week the internet music behemoth backed down, formally recognising Scots in their database of languages.

Fyfe, who volunteers with Oor Vyce, the campaign for a Scots Language Act, which aims to have Scots recognised legally as an official language by the Scottish Parliament, welcomed the decision.

She said: “It is a big step forward to be able to pressure a global company to change their language policy and add Scots. Being able to categorise my songs under the correct language of Scots means so much to me, and many other singers.

“Once we achieve a Scots Language Act, then the legislation will place responsibility unto other companies to correctly recognise the language.”

Adamson paid tribute to the musician’s campaign.

The MSP said: “Preservation of a language is not just about promoting or celebrating culture or identity – though that is significant. Preservation of a language is an inherent acceptance of the people who speak it. 

“That is something worth singing about and that is why I am delighted that Spotify has acted on this glaring omission. Iona is a superb advocate for the Scots language and a 
fabulous musician.”