In May, it was announced that The Joe Rogan Experience would move to Spotify in a reported $100m (£88m) deal. The deal appeared to promise that Rogan’s entire library of past episodes would be available on Spotify after its 1 September launch.
Also absent are episodes featuring the comedian Chris D’Elia, who said in a statement in June that he had never “knowingly pursued any underage women at any point”.
One Rogan fan tweeted that “Spotify 86’d the Alex Jones episodes, plus more controversial guests” in the early hours of 1 September, leading to many other right-wing fans claiming that episodes had been censored.
The apparent missing episodes have led many of Rogan’s fans to demand answers, with some threatening to abandon the show altogether.
“Joe is dead to me if he doesn’t address this,” wrote one Reddit commentator. “This goes against his ‘we need to talk to everybody’ shtick. I’m not interested in listening to curated podcasts by his employer.”
Another added: “Joe sold out. It’s coming to us as a surprise, but this had to be part of the plan. He can talk the talk as a free speech advocate all he wants, but when push came to shove, he took the money and agreed to be censored. Pretty disappointed, but whatever.”
As part of Rogan’s Spotify deal, the radio personality will produce podcasts and accompanying videos for the platform.
Towards the end of 2020, his show will be made exclusive to Spotify, meaning that listeners will no longer be able to tune in on platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or Stitcher. Rogan’s YouTube channel will remain intact, albeit will no longer publish full episodes of his programme.
In a statement in May, Rogan said: “It will be the exact show. I’m not going to be an employee of Spotify, we’re going to be working with the same crew, doing the exact same show. The only difference will be it will now be available on the largest audio platform in the world. Nothing else will change.”
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