Joe Rogan not only survived the movement to cancel his Spotify podcast, he thrived.
The UFC color commentator came under fire for a multitude of controversial takes, to the point where Spotify’s own employees threatened to walk off the job. CEO Daniel Ek resisted pressure to silence the longtime comedian, calling podcast censorship a “slippery slope.”
In the end, it looks like the Rogan kerfuffle was good for the bottom line.
“You have been put through the wringer since we last met,” British political commentator Douglas Murray told Rogan during last Friday’s “Experience” podcast. “They did a number on you. Wow.”
“It’s interesting, my subscriptions went up massively – that’s what’s crazy,” Rogan countered. “During the height of it all, I gained two million subscribers. Yeah, [the media] went for it. It’s also fortunate that the people who went for it were CNN. They’re so untrustworthy and people know how biased they are and socially weird their anchors are.”
Rogan previously teased a CNN lawsuit for “making shit up.”
Spotify landed Rogan with an exclusive (some might say “gross”) $100 million dollar broadcast deal back in early 2020 and it didn’t take long for his brand of humor — and controversial guest list — to ruffle a few feathers (and delete a few episodes).
But was Rogan — or his critics — in the wrong?
“I talk shit for a living, that’s why this is so baffling to me,” Rogan told his audience during a recent comedy show. “If you’re taking vaccine advice from me, is that really my fault? What dumb shit were you about to do when my stupid idea sounded better? ‘You know that dude who made people eat animal dicks on TV? How does he feel about medicine?’ If you want my advice, don’t take my advice.”
Rogan is expected to return to the UFC commentary table for UFC 274 on May 7.