Months after random, woke, and easily replaceable Spotify employees threatened to strike until Joe Rogan is censored, the podcast service quietly removed 42 — 42! — “controversial” episodes of The Joe Rogan Experience.
According to Digital Music News, which first noticed the removals, Spotify took down a recent episode with Dave Asprey, the founder of Bulletproof Coffee, who claims he will live to 180. I’m not sure if Asprey will make it to 180, but fans of JRE won’t get to hear his case anymore.
Other recently canceled episodes include interviews with Brian Redban, seven episodes with David Seaman, four episodes with comedian Chris D’Elia, Gavin McInnes, Milo Yiannopoulous, and Eddie Bravo.
Rogan seems okay with a “few” episodes losing distribution, recently saying “There were a few episodes [Spotify] didn’t want on their platform, and I was like, ‘Okay, I don’t care.'” It’s unclear, however, if Rogan knew that a “few” meant 42 and counting.
Rogan’s fan base, as expected, is furious. This is exactly what JRE listeners feared would happen after Rogan signed a $100 million agreement with Spotify last summer. Before moving his content exclusively to Spotify, Rogan was one of just a few media personalities who listened to no one, who had the freedom to dive into topics that no one else in media would touch.
What’s baffling is that Spotify knew what it was getting with Joe Rogan’s podcast, with both its library and future episodes. Spotify invested nine figures into the brand Rogan built, which in large part grew because he had conversations with personalities whom competing hosts wouldn’t dare talk to.
Did Spotify foolishly think it’d get a toned-down version of Joe Rogan?
Spotify has not addressed why certain episodes were removed or whether more will join the naughty list. At least as of this publication, Rogan’s top-downloaded episodes with Alex Jones are still available.
$100 million is great. This partnership? Not so much.