So, just who exactly is Joe Rogan and why do people hate him so much?
He’s a real-life villain with dangerous opinions
By now, you’re probably seen Joe Rogan hit the headlines more than you’ve had hot dinners. But who exactly is the podcast presenter?
Other than being the person who drove Neil Young off Spotify – why is everyone so obsessed with this old, right-wing internet guy? And why should *we* care about him?
Well, turns out he’s said quite a lot of really awful/transphobic/scientifically false stuff in the not-too-distant past. His platform on Spotify is already massive and continuing to expand, and the level of misinformation he spreads could prove fatal to a lot of people.
So, here’s everything you need to know about Joe Rogan – the seemingly unstoppable super-villain of the internet.
The Joe Rogan Experience is one of the most popular podcasts worldwide
The podcast started off on YouTube in 2009 and moved to Spotify during May 2020. JRE features a different guest each week, with topics like MMA, vaccines and right-wing politics receiving regular coverage. Even Donald Trump tweeted about wanting a guest spot during the 2020 presidential elections.
Actual guests have included conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, anti-feminist (among other things) Milo Yiannopoulos and Chris D’elia: A comedian accused of multiple sex crimes. Despite backlash, Spotify have previously refused to edit or remove selected episodes.
By 2019, Rogan stated that he had a listenership of 190 million per month.
Rogan has been called out for using racist language
In 2020, an anonymous Twitter account shared a compilation clip of Rogan saying the “N” word numerous times. As well as using slurs, Rogan reportedly made reference to Planet Of The Apes while talking about an all-black neighbourhood.
He has a history of transphobia
As well as saying he “[tended] to disagree” with the gender of an MMA fighter, Rogan made a particularly grim comment about Caitlyn Jenner after she came out to the world.
“If you live with crazy bitches long enough, you […] turn into one,” Rogan “joked” on an episode of his podcast.
He also invited a boss-battle-level TERF (Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist) to appear on his show, who was there to promote her book “The Transgender Craze.”
According to Rogan, young people should turn down the vaccine
We need to talk about the vaccines – UnHerd https://t.co/1OvW1pzD2a
— Joe Rogan (@joerogan) January 20, 2022
Wearing a mask is “for bitches,” he said, while simultaneously dismissing every single clinically vulnerable person in the world.
“If you’re, like, 21-years-old and you say to me: ‘Should I get vaccinated?’ […] I don’t think you need to worry about this” he added. Rogan’s comments drew a huge amount of controversy, with respected medical professionals reiterating that *everyone* needs the vaccine.
He promoted taking horse de-worming pills to ‘cure’ Covid
Joe Rogan: I trust my immune system
Also Joe Rogan: I got covid so I took monoclonal antibodies, Ivermectin, vitamin drip, mermaid tears, hair follicles from a newborn, toe fungus ointment, unicorn bone marrow, and the blood from a virgin
— Nathan Wind (@matty_angles) September 2, 2021
Rogan announced to his following in September 2021 he’d finally caught Covid, and felt “great” after self-medicating with anti-parasitic drug Ivermectin (as well as a “kitchen sink” worth of random pills).
America’s FDA (Food and Drug Administration) explicitly warned against the dangers of taking medication meant for animals. “Taking large doses of the drug is dangerous and can cause serious harm,” they said.
Artists have boycotted Spotify
Rogan’s knack for spreading misinfo has lead to some of the world’s most respected artists withdrawing their music from Spotify. ’70s singers Neil Young, Joni Mitchell and David Crosby have each taken their work off the platform.
“Irresponsible people are spreading lies that are costing people their lives,” Joni said in an open letter. “I stand in solidarity with Neil Young.”
The move left Spotify reeling after it lost $2 billion (around £1.5 billion) in market value. Rogan spoke publicly about the situation on Instagram: “I’m interested in telling the truth. I’m interested in finding what the truth is. I’m interested in having conversations with people who have different opinions,” he said.