Spotify CEO Says He Finds Some Of Joe Rogan’s Content “Very Offensive” …. WTF?

In a stunning admission, the CEO of Spotify Daniel Ek had this to say in a Spotify town hall as reported by The Verge:

“A publisher has editorial control over a creator’s content — they can take action on the content before it’s even published,” he says, like editing episodes, removing guests, or preventing one from publishing at all. Ek noted that Spotify does have editorial control over the properties it owns outright, like The Ringer and Gimlet, but emphasized the distinction between those studios and Rogan. “Even though JRE is an exclusive, it is licensed content. It is important to note that we do not have creative control over Joe Rogan’s content. We don’t approve his guests in advance, and just like any other creator, we get his content when he publishes, and then we review it, and if it violates our policies, we take the appropriate enforcement actions.”

Notably, Ek did not defend Rogan’s views. “There are many things that Joe Rogan says that I strongly disagree with and find very offensive,” he said.

He adds that there are a “number” of JRE episodes Spotify has removed because they violate the platform’s rules. (It’s unclear what episodes Ek is referencing, but fans noticed some missing when Rogan made the move to the platform in September 2020, and Rogan acknowledged their removal last March.) 

So this ties into an article that I wrote a few days ago. But the thing that I find interesting is that even the CEO of Spotify has problems with Rogan. Yet the service that he runs still hosts his content. Thus showing that this is all about the Benjamins for him. Or put another way, Spotify paid Rogan something around $100 million in hopes that he would help Spotify turn a profit on a consistent basis. So Ek is going to ride that horse as long as he can do so because he really has no plan B. I also find it interesting that when Rogan made the move to Spotify, some of his episodes disappeared. Thus it’s clear that Spotify knew what they were getting when they signed Rogan. And this is clearly unsettling to Spotify employees:

For some employees, though, Ek and the team’s sentiments rang hollow. Throughout the town hall, they messaged internally, according to screenshots viewed by The Verge, expressing disappointment with the choice Spotify made in not only signing Rogan but also in defending him. They questioned how the company considers itself a platform while still actively promoting JRE and including its logo on the cover art and how what some consider an ethical issue is being put in pure business terms.

I take that to mean that Ek’s problems are multifaceted. As in he has to deal with external forces as well as his own employees protesting about Joe Rogan. That’s not a good place to be if you’re Ek. And it’s also a sure sign that you might be on the wrong side of this, and that you should be reconsidering your choices when it comes to this.

One Response to “Spotify CEO Says He Finds Some Of Joe Rogan’s Content “Very Offensive” …. WTF?”

  1. […] as Spotify employees have had some issues with the course that CEO Daniel Ek has taken, this isn’t going to help Ek in terms of […]

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