Rumble, a free speech video platform, offered popular podcaster Joe Rogan a $100-million contract to join its platform amidst the threat of censorship from Spotify, where his podcasts currently broadcast.
The tweet attached a pitch from Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski:
“We stand with you, your guests, and your legion of fans in desire for real conversation. So we’d like to offer you 100 million reasons to make the world a better place.
How about you bring all your shows to Rumble, both old and new, with no censorship, for 100 million bucks over four years? This is our chance to save the world. And yes, this is totally legit.”
Rumble’s offer came after Rogan, who is also a comedian and UFC mixed martial arts host, has drawn criticism from far leftists who wanted his Spotify podcast canceled. Cancel culture knocked on Rogan’s door after he interviewed doctors who challenged the mainstream narrative on COVID-19 and vaccines.
The controversial podcast was with Dr. Peter McCullough and Dr. Robert Malone, the inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology. Malone believes there should not be vaccine mandates and kids should not be vaccinated.
In 2020, Rogan struck a deal with online music streaming giant Spotify for $100 million for exclusive streaming rights of Rogan’s nearly 2,000 podcasts he has produced since 2012.
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The mouse that roared
Rogan attracts 11 million viewers per episode of his podcast. He covers a wide range of themes, such as entertainment, comedy, sports, politics, health, and even human rights abuses in communist regimes, like China and North Korea, for example.
Recently, Rogan has challenged ‘woke’ narratives, pointing out, for example, the unfairness of biological male transgender people competing in female sports. He has also challenged the COVID-19 vaccine narrative that the only way to protect against the virus is through experimental vaccines. Rogan himself quickly recovered from COVID-19 using alternative methods, which included Ivermectin.
As Rogan invites diverse guests willing to challenge far-left narratives that mainstream media propagandizes, those same media outlets and its far-left supporters have tried to cancel him.
One of Rogan’s most outspoken critics was musical artist Neil Young, who accused the podcaster of spreading COVID misinformation. Young delivered Spotify an ultimatum on Jan. 25, stating it should ban Rogan or else Young would leave the platform.
“I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform…They can have Rogan or Young. Not both.” Young posted his demand in a letter on his website, which was later removed. Young’s catalog was taken down by the next day.
In Jan. 2021, Young sold 50% of his publishing rights for a whopping $150 million, which enabled him to take down his music from the world’s leading streaming platform.
A few other leftist 1970s-era artists have followed Young’s lead and have removed music from Spotify. They include Joni Mitchell, Nils Lofgren, and Young’s former bandmates David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash.
To appease far-left critics, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has added pop-up banners ‘warning’ listeners for harmful content, linking them to ‘trusted sources.’
“We are working to add a content advisory to any podcast episode that includes a discussion about COVID-19. This advisory will direct listeners to our dedicated COVID-19 Hub, a resource that provides easy access to data-driven facts, up-to-date information as shared by scientists, physicians, academics and public health authorities around the world, as well as links to trusted sources,” Spotify announced on its website on Jan. 30.
Many people’s critique is that ‘trusted sources’ like the CDC, WHO, and Dr. Fauci, Biden’s leading medical advisor, have flip-flopped on COVID-19 policy for two years, often contradicting themselves. Oftentimes, the former policy is proven wrong when further scientific studies have been conducted, making such ‘trusted sources’ questionable.
Critiques of Rogan haven’t just stayed on the topic of COVID-19 vaccines. Artist India Arie uploaded an edited compilation video that spliced together clips of Rogan using the N-word. All of the clips were taken out of context in an effort to paint Rogan as a racist. However, Rogan has many longstanding public friendships with black athletes, entertainers, and other VIPs. The video has since been removed.
Arie said she “empathize[s] with the people who are leaving [Spotify] for the COVID disinformation reasons.” But she said racism was “why I decided to ask my music be pulled off of Spotify.”
She also called out Spotify for “paying musicians a fraction of a penny and [Rogan] $100 million,” noting his mega-deal with Spotify.
On Feb. 4, Rogan posted an apology on Instagram. He said using the N-word was inappropriate, and he hasn’t used it for years. But he also explained that the clips of him using the racial slur were edited together out of the context of him using the word during interviews, such as asking questions. He maintained the position that he is not racist.
Ek responded on Feb. 6:
“Following these discussions and his own reflections, he chose to remove a number of episodes from Spotify. He also issued his own apology over the weekend … and I want to make one point very clear — I do not believe that silencing Joe is the answer.”
Regarding Rumble’s offer, Rogan told The Hollywood Reporter, “No, Spotify has hung in with me, inexplicably, let’s see what happens.”