Spotify drops disinformation packed episodes of Joe Rogan's podcast

Originally published at: Spotify drops disinformation packed episodes of Joe Rogan's podcast | Boing Boing


The fact that they took his show at all is highly questionable


I really don’t get what happened with him. I used to think he was a reasonable, moderate skeptic, but how quickly that has proven to be incorrect, and how deep down the rabbit hole he seems to have gone now.

His decline has really soured me towards podcasts, period. It seems far easier for personality cults to form on that medium than most others at this point.


My impression is that he’s a skeptic who failed to use the critical thinking required to avoid buying into disinformation, much like conspiracy theorists. It’s telling how often conspiracy theories emerge from skeptic communities.

I also get the impression he spends a lot of his free-time socializing with some of his guests who were glad to welcome a welathy successful media personality into their social circles, and perhaps this compromised whatever objectivity he initially had.


Spotify drops disinformation packed episodes of Joe Rogan’s podcast

So, all of them?


Spotify will take anyone who will increase their profits. That explains the dropped episodes.


My thinking on it is that him being a skeptic was what turned him toward where he is now. He became known for stirring the pot and being edgy, you know who else likes to be edgy, spouts supposed true-isms and conspiracy theories and cries about not being able to speak their mind without offending people? Yeah… the far-right. He never grew up as he became more famous and being an edgelord that wants to offend people while making money became more important than being a reasonable human being.


Skeptic or contrarian AKA edgelord? I have a couple of sincerity tests relating to that.

Does the person like the fact that their opinion is unpopular so they can get involved in controversy, or do they believe that the world would be better if what they claim to believe is true was more popular?

Have they any history of empathy, compassion, and activism particularly relating to groups they claim their opinion is better for?

Not very concise but thinking that way you know it when you see it and “critical thinker” or “skeptic” are not things that anyone should really self describe at these days given the current popular usages.

Like the word “research”, nowadays it’s the battle cry of disinformation, most famously at Q type do the research rants but even before that with the European Research Group or more locally the Loyalist Research Network. In each case they have the answer, they just need to dig out something they can call evidence.


Spotify is just the next incarnation of the record buiness, out to screw you coming and going.

The Who said it pretty succinctly “Meet the new boss Same as the old boss”


Lexicon aside, as a research scientist obviously I value skepticism, critical thinking and research. Which was basically my point. If you’re not at least as eager to have your hypotheses and theories disproved, you become their advocate, and that way lies delusions including conspiracy theories. In the domain of politics and social science, skepticism without critical thinking (literally thinking critically about one’s own beliefs and assumptions) leads to the morally vacuous toxicity that is contrarianism, and thus, in certain personality types, edgelord behavior.


He got all 'roid neck deep in Sam Harris


Sure, my point being that “critical thinker” and “skeptic” aren’t jobs you should describe yourself as doing. It’s absolutely part of being a scientist or critic though.


Fair enough. I’m always wary of anyone who self-labels as an abstraction without further context. That should be a red flag, especially these days.


Do you see a difference between radio talk shows and podcasts like Rogan? The biggest podcasts I’m aware of are things like The Daily, This American Life, and Serial.

I’ve always been drawn to talk radio. Sadly, growing up the only stuff available was shock jocks or conservative AM. Even with podcasts, the stereotype for me is a few white dudes talking about tech, but there are a lot of other voices out there as well as a lot of other genres.

I really do see what you’re saying about personality cults. I don’t feel like I’ve ever been “sucked in” but I’ve definitely had to leave shows I’ve grown away from. A meta-topic joke on some podcasts is that they’re fake friends because of the one-sided relationship of listening to someone talk. Hosts have talked about how the boundaries can be weird when meeting fans in person or through emails.


Rogan has had some good guests on-- Bernie, Henry Rollins, Neil Degrasse Tyson. And he lets them speak freely, unfortunately this makes it a double edged sword with alt-right guests or snake oil salesmen.

I don’t listen to his show, but I know people who do and they’re not weird macho trolls. [ETA: obviously I’ve checked out a couple episodes.]

Rogan seems reasonably intelligent, but then he falls for such bullshit too. The very definition of “keeping an open mind puts you in danger of your brain falling out.”


My favorite quote and I’m paraphrasing is “beware of keep your mind too open, people will dump all sorts of crap in there”


Rogan basically attempts to believe whoever is in front of him. That’s pretty open minded but suseptible to bullshit at the same time when you put anyone and everyone on your show. He endorsed Bernie when Bernie was in front of him, he also endorses Alex Jones when Jones is in front of him.


That’s a good question, and to your other statement:

That was true for me, too. I think that might be part of the problem for me - I paint both with the same brush.

There’s a weird cultural thing going on here, too - we’re far more likely to, for example, see an article that critiques a blog post, video, twitter stream, FB post etc., than a podcast episode. I wonder why that is, especially in the case of videos. I guess most podcasts are longer than the average YT video, but it does seem to be that you can get away with a lot more, unchallenged, in podcasts than those other mediums, which maybe contributes to my perception.

Perhaps that’s it - podcasts, like radio shows (at least ones without public call-in guests) just feel less participatory than these other mediums somehow, but also seem to be held accountable less for what they say as well, and, to me, that both lowers the perceived value of the information being discussed, as well as encourages the cult-of-personality aspect more, perhaps than other mediums would.

I mean, maybe I just haven’t given the medium a fair shake by choosing the wrong initial podcasts to subscribe to when I was exploring the medium (including, obviously, Joe Rogan).


Joe Rogan Experience 947 - Ron Miscavige - 2017-04-18

I gather that he’s made his YouTube channel private now, so I can delete that one.

eta: Oops, not his channel. But I don’t know if I’ll bother hunting a good link.

I don’t see Rogan as any kind of alt-right type at all. Part of the reason he has right-wingers on his show is to challenge them, and he challenges them with personal statements and stories, he doesn’t challenge them sorely as an intellectual exercise. He’s liberal on several issues.

Alex Jones is far more likely to have had a personality cult form around him. Rogan reaches out to far too many branches of discussion to achieve the same.