“This is not only a scientific or medical concern; it is a sociological issue of devastating proportions and Spotify is responsible for allowing this activity to thrive on its platform.”
The UFC commenter, podcast king and stand-up comedian, who signed a $100 million exclusivity deal with the service to broadcast The Joe Rogan Experience, is under fire again–this time after interviewing controversial Dr. Robert Malone.
The medical doctor and immunologist has been accused of pushing debunked claims about COVID-19. He also claimed that “hypnotized” US citizens have gotten COVID-19 vaccines and worn masks while under “mass formation psychosis.” Malone is also credited with playing a key part in developing the mRNA technology that’s now used in the COVID-19 vaccines.
According to Business Insider, “mass formation psychosis” does not exist in the American Psychological Association’s Dictionary of Psychology. Malone had previously been suspended from Twitter over his COVID-19 claims.
The open letter to Spotify signed by 270 members of the medical community–including doctors, scientists and nurses–alleges that Malone’s views “damage public trust in scientific research and sow doubt in the credibility of data-driven guidance offered by medical professionals.”
“With an estimated 11 million listeners per episode, JRE is the world’s largest podcast and has tremendous influence. Though Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, the company presently has no misinformation policy.”
“This is not only a scientific or medical concern; it is a sociological issue of devastating proportions and Spotify is responsible for allowing this activity to thrive on its platform,” the letter states.
This isn’t the first time The Joe Rogan Experience has spawned a COVID-19-related controversy.
On episode No. 1,639 with fellow comedian and Legion of Skanks co-host Dave Smith, Rogan said, “But if you’re like 21 years old, and you say to me, ‘Should I get vaccinated?’ I’ll go no.’”
After receiving received backlash from medical experts over the viral comments, Rogan backpedaled on his claim that healthy young Americans don’t need to get vaccinated against COVID-19 — insisting he’s “not an anti-vaxx person.”
“I’m not a doctor, I’m a fucking moron,” Rogan said. “I’m not a respected source of information, even for me … But I at least try to be honest about what I’m saying.”
“I’m not an anti-vaxx person,” he added. “I said I believe they’re safe and I encourage many people to take them. My parents were vaccinated. I just said that if you’re a young, healthy person that you don’t need it.”