spotify sued gender discrimination
Getty Images / NurPhoto / Jaap Arriens

A former sales executive at Spotify has filed a lawsuit against the company and her former boss Brian Berner for gender discrimination and defamation, Variety reports. The executive, Hong Perez, described a “boys club” culture at the company and alleges a systematic discrimination against women, including pay inequality.

In her complaint, which has been obtained by Pitchfork, Perez mentions all-male trips to strip clubs and says an executive was promoted after receiving warnings for sexual harassment. She also claims that Spotify’s CFO announced that he “does not care about diversity at the company,” and that an HR executive said his favorite curse word is “c*nt.”

Elsewhere, Perez alleges that head of sales Brian Berner took all-male sales staff on trips to the Sundance Film Festival in 2016 and 2017, which were referred to internally as “boys’ trips.” She claims that better-qualified women were excluded from the trips, that the executives who went spoke about drug use, and that members of the team were involved in a physical altercation, but no one was disciplined.

She also alleges that she was fired as cover for Berner’s ethical misconduct. The complaint alleges that after Berner got in trouble for a discounting deal and accepting free tickets to Madison Square Garden, he shifted the blame to Perez and she was fired for violating the company’s code of conduct. According to the complaint, “Berner was well aware of male employees violating the code of conduct, yet did nothing.”

A company representative told Variety, “At Spotify, we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind at any level. While we cannot comment on the specific details of a pending litigation, these claims are without merit.”

In other music news, Mac Miller was honored with a moment of silence before a recent Pittsburgh Pirates game.

News & Culture Editor

Berlin-based writer and Rihanna enthusiast.