Background: Joe Rogan gets 11 million views per show, while CNN Primetime averages only 800,000 views. This is a problem for the establishment narrative, especially when Rogan brings on credentialed guests who discuss views contrary to what the legacy media publishes.
Two weeks ago, over 200 “doctors” signed a letter demanding that Spotify fight “disinformation” by censoring Joe Rogan’s podcast. It turned out that many signers weren’t doctors; some were students, podcasters, nurses, etc.
Neil Young strikes: Inspired by the letter, the Canadian American artist gave Spotify an ultimatum: Spotify could “have Rogan or Young. Not both.” Spotify ended up removing Neil Young’s catalog.
- Joni Mitchell and lower-profile artist Nils Lofgren joined Neil Young’s boycott with the same demand. Biden’s Surgeon General, Vivek Murthy, also suggested Spotify censor Rogan.
Spotify announced COVID-19 disclaimers to podcasts around the subject to appease the boycotters. Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter already do this.
Spotify isn’t the good guy: Despite Spotify sticking with Joe Rogan, they’re not against censorship. The move to keep him is purely fiscal—Joe Rogan’s podcast was Spotify’s most popular podcast in 2021. The company invested $100 million into him, and many listeners only use Spotify to listen to his podcast.
Spotify has taken measures to censor when it doesn’t risk profit:
- Spotify removed over 20,000 podcast episodes for misinformation since the beginning of the pandemic.
- Spotify has removed over 40 episodes of Joe Rogan’s podcast since he partnered with them.
- Other partisan podcasts like Steve Bannon’s “War Room” were banned by Spotify over a year ago.
This is not about disinformation
The establishment-media system consistently pushes disinformation like the Russia-collusion hoax, but there’s never liberal backlash. The censor-hungry coalition of progressives only wants to silence information dangerous to their narrative.
What’s at stake: While removing Joe Rogan from Spotify would be a poor financial decision now, it might not always be. Spotify relies on high-profile musicians and partnerships with celebrities like Michelle Obama. If the left successfully paints Spotify as a life-threatening risk to America and democracy, those individuals would want to avoid the association.