It’s official – Spotify opted to back renown anti-vaxxer Joe Rogan, and remove Neil Young!
Here is what you need to know about Spotify’s decision in the Neil Young-Joe Rogan controversy!
Neil Young To Spotify : Remove Joe Rogan Or My Music!
Joe Rogan has long been an icon of the anti-vaccination movement, which got a big boost when Spotify paid him US$100 million for the exclusive rights to his podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience (JRE).
He used that platform to give anti-vaxxers like Robert Malone exposure, and the opportunity to spread even more misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines.
This troubled Neil Young so much, he wrote an open letter to Frank Gironda (his manager) and Tom Corson (Co-Chairman and CEO of Warner Records), asking them to remove his music from Spotify :
I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform. They can have [Joe] Rogan or Young. Not both.
With an estimated 11 million listeners per episode, JRE, which is hosted exclusively on Spotify, is the world’s largest podcast and has tremendous influence.
Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, though the company presently has no misinformation policy.
I am doing this because Spotify is spreading fake information about vaccines – potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread by them. Please act on this immediately today and keep me informed of the time schedule.
Spotify Backs Anti-Vax Joe Rogan, Removes Neil Young!
Instead of addressing his concerns, Spotify responded by removing Neil Young’s music.
They did not issue an official press release, but confirmed to Hollywood Reporter on 26 January 2022 :
We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing both safety for listeners and freedom for creators.
We have detailed content policies in place and we’ve removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to Covid since the start of the pandemic.
We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon.
Interestingly, their spokesperson avoided mentioning Joe Rogan, or explain why they did not sanction or warn him about the anti-vaccination misinformation he had been spreading in his podcasts.
Should You Boycott Spotify For Supporting Antivax Joe Rogan?
In a follow-up post, Neil Young called Spotify the “home of life threatening COVID misinformation“, and a “damaging force” in the fight against lies and misinformation.
SPOTIFY has recently become a very damaging force via its public misinformation and lies about COVID.
I first learned of this problem by reading that 200 plus doctors had joined forces, taking on the dangerous life-threatening COVID falsehoods found in SPOTIFY programming.
Most of the listeners hearing the unfactual, misleading and false COVID information on SPOTIFY are 24 years old, impressionable and easy to swing to the wrong side of the truth.
These young people believe SPOTIFY would never present grossly unfactual information. They unfortunately are wrong. I knew I had to try to point that out.
I agree with Neil, and point out that it took his gutsy move to bring this out into the open, and force Spotify’s hand – was it merely an oversight, or an intentional choice?
Spotify made their choice, and it’s time for us to make ours.
Neil called on other artists and record companies to also remove their content, and stop supporting its “deadly misinformation about COVID“.
I sincerely hope that other artists and record companies will move off the SPOTIFY platform and stop supporting SPOTIFY’s deadly misinformation about COVID.
We should make the same choice too. Stop listening to Spotify. Cancel your subscription. Close your account.
Tell your friends about the day Spotify chose misinformation over the truth. Choose truth over lies.
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.
He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.
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