Joe Rogan: Spotify’s support for presenter is a ‘slap in the face’, science podcasters say

Producers of popular podcast said that ‘Rogan’s show leaves the audience with a skewed and inaccurate view of the Covid-19 vaccines’

Isobel Lewis
Tuesday 01 February 2022 08:35
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‘No hard feelings’: Joe Rogan on Neil Young, Joni Mitchell boycotting Spotify

The producers of a popular science podcast have called Spotify’s support of Joe Rogan “a slap in the face”.

Last week, Neil Young issued an ultimatum to Spotify, asking that his music be deleted from the platform over its affiliation with The Joe Rogan Experience podcast.

Spotify acquired The Joe Rogan Experience in 2020, reportedly paying more than $100m (£77m) for exclusive rights to the podcast.

The company has backed Rogan, who had been accused of using the platform to “spreading dangerous information” regarding Covid vaccines. However, Spotify has said that it will add disclaimers to shows discussing the pandemic and vaccines.

On Monday (31 January), Science Vs podcast producers Wendy Zukerman and Blythe Terrell said that they will stop producing content until Spotify cracks down harder on the spread of misinformation.,

In a letter to the company’s chief executive Daniel Ek, Zukerman and Terrell claimed that Spotify had done “little” to address misleading content in a recent episode of the podcast.

“Throughout the pandemic, Spotify has given Science Vs the resources we needed to produce accurate content about the coronavirus,” they said.

“Spotify’s support of Joe Rogan’s podcast has felt like a slap in the face. Rogan’s show leaves the audience with a skewed and inaccurate view of the Covid-19 vaccines and Spotify has done little to address this.”

They continued: “Until Spotify implements stronger methods to prevent the spread of misinformation on the platform we will no longer be making new Science Vs episodes, except those intended to counteract misinformation being spread by Spotify.”

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Zukerman and Terrell said they understood the difficulties of moderating content on a large platform, but added that the streamer had a “responsibility to do more”.

The Independent has contacted Spotify for comment.

The news comes after Rogan said he would try to “balance out” the opinions expressed on his show following the controversy.

The UFC commentator apologised if he offended anyone and added that he “was not trying to promote misinformation” and would “try harder to get people with differing opinions” on his show.

Additional reporting by PA Ready

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