A coalition of doctors, physicians, science educators and medical professionals are calling for Spotify to take action against the spread of misinformation on “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast.
The open letter, which was first reported on by Rolling Stone, specifically took issue with a controversial episode that featured Robert Malone, a virologist known for spreading misinformation about COVID-19. It explained that “by allowing the propagation of false and societally harmful assertions, Spotify is enabling its hosted media to damage public trust in scientific research and sow doubt in the credibility of data-driven guidance offered by medical professionals.”
“Dr. Malone used the JRE platform to further promote numerous baseless claims, including several falsehoods about COVID-19 vaccines and an unfounded theory that societal leaders have “hypnotized” the public,” read the open letter. “Many of these statements have already been discredited.”
Earlier this year, Rogan told his millions of listeners that healthy young people do not need the Covid-19 vaccine, and was later condemned for spreading misinformation. He clarified his comments a week later, adding that he is “not an anti-vax person.”
“I believe [the Covid-19 vaccines are] safe and I encourage many people to take ‘em,” Rogan said during an April 2021 episode of the JRE with comedian Andrew Santino. “I just said, I don’t think that if you’re a young, healthy person, that you need it.”
Rogan, 53, is also an outspoken opponent of vaccine mandates, contracted Covid-19 in September and opted to treat the virus with an array of alternative and unproven remedies such as the anti-parasitic medication Ivermectin, antibiotics, and a vitamin drip. He also used monoclonal antibodies.
Given that Rogan hosts one of the most popular podcasts in the world, and that podcast is broadcast to millions of regular listeners through Spotify, the group of doctors asserted that both are responsible for the “false and societally harmful assertions.”
“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 open letter concluded.