Joe Rogan responds to Spotify controversy
Joe Rogan has responded to calls to remove his podcast from Spotify, saying that he never aims to misinform the public, but only wants to have “interesting conversations” with different opinions represented.
“I think there’s a lot of people that have a distorted perception of what I do maybe based on sound bites or based on headlines of articles that are disparaging,” Rogan said in a 10-minute monologue, uploaded on Instagram on Sunday.
He disagreed with the claim made by his critics that he was “spreading dangerous misinformation” through his super popular The Joe Rogan Experience podcast. “I’m not trying to do misinformation; I’m not trying to be controversial,” he insisted.
The host, who has been getting the most heat over his show’s recent episodes on Covid-19 featuring Dr. Peter McCullough and Dr. Robert Malone, has defended his choice of guests.
“These people are very highly credentialed, very intelligent, very accomplished people, and they have an opinion that’s different from the mainstream narrative. I wanted to hear what their opinion is. I had them on,” he explained.
“I do not know if they’re right. I don’t know because I’m not a doctor. I’m not a scientist. I’m just a person who sits down and talks to people,” Rogan added.
The podcaster reminded that he also invited experts with opposite views on the pandemic, including Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Dr. Michael Osterholm, who is on President Biden’s Covid-19 advisory board. “I’m not interested in only talking to people that have one perspective,” he said.
The 54-year-old went on to say that he had a “problem” with the very term ‘misinformation’ because “many of the things that we thought of as misinformation just a short while ago are now accepted as facts.”
Among some other examples, he pointed out that: “Eight months ago, if you said, ‘if you get vaccinated, you can still catch Covid and you can still spread Covid.’ You'd be removed from social media. They would, they would ban you from certain platforms. Now that's accepted as fact.”
However, Rogan acknowledged that his own opinions could sometimes turn out to be “not the most fleshed out” as they’re being made during a lengthy real-time conversation. “Do I get things wrong? Absolutely. I get things wrong, but I try to correct them whenever I get something wrong. I try to correct it because I'm interested in telling the truth.”
Also on Sunday, Spotify announced that it’s going to be adding a “content advisory” to any podcast episodes that address Covid-19, directing users to “trusted sources” on the pandemic, including data from the government and health experts.
The comedian, who has a $100-million deal with the streaming service, said that he was totally on board with the idea: “Sure. Have that on there. I’m very happy with that.”
Another improvement that he could do himself would be to “have more experts with different opinions right after… the controversial ones” in order to balance out the information on the podcast – not only on the coronavirus, but all other issues, he pointed out. “I do all the scheduling myself and I don’t always get it right.”
Addressing the iconic musicians Neil Young and Joni Mitchell, who announced they want their music removed from Spotify last week in protest against his podcast, Rogan said: “I’m very sorry that they feel that way. I most certainly don’t want that. I’m a Neil Young fan.”
He also thanked Spotify for supporting him amid the controversy and concluded by telling the viewers: “If I pissed you off – I’m sorry. If you enjoy the podcast – thank you.”