Joe Rogan Calls Transphobic Accusations ‘Nonsense’ — Spotify Won’t Be Editing Episodes

Joe Rogan during his recent interview with comedian Bridget Phetasy this week.
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Joe Rogan during his recent interview with comedian Bridget Phetasy this week.
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Joe Rogan during his recent interview with comedian Bridget Phetasy.

Joe Rogan is now responding to seemingly-endless accusations of transphobia — specifically those involving Caitlin Jenner.  Activist Spotify employees have reportedly demanded the removal of Rogan’s comments and direct-editing over future episodes — so far, Spotify has refused to edit anything.

Rogan, who inked an estimated $100 million exclusive podcasting deal with Spotify, is now speaking out after weathering repeated accusations of transphobia.  Rogan specifically addressed pushback to his earlier jokes about Caitlin Jenner.

The Jenner comments are just one of a several transgender-related segments that have reportedly prompted activist Spotify employees to demand serious changes to the podcast.  According to Vice, more than ten meetings have been held internally with Spotify upper management to address the situation.  The demands reportedly included the removal or editing of Rogan’s content deemed offensive, or even the flat-out removal of entire episodes viewed as transphobic or problematic.

But despite threats of a walk-out or even a full-blown strike by employees, Spotify now appears to be pushing back — and refusing to edit anything.  That has apparently been made clear internally, with employees now considering their next moves.

In Rogan’s recent interview with comedian Bridget Phelan, Rogan slammed the accusations as ridiculous.

“The victim mentality, one of the reasons why I reject it so heavily, is that it’s completely contrary to comedy,” Rogan started. “If everyone is a victim, and you can’t have any victims ever, then you can’t have any jokes.  Because you’re making fun of things that are preposterous, and as soon as you can’t make fun of things that are preposterous…”

“We were talking before about this Vice [magazine] thing that was written about transphobic episodes of this podcast,” Rogan continued. “And one of the things they wrote is that I incorrectly described how Caitlin Jenner transitioned — or why Caitlin Jenner transitioned. And I’m like, ‘oh, you mean, Kris Jenner isn’t really a demon that hovers over his bed, and whispers in his ear, and converted him to a woman?’ I mean, what the f—k are you talking about?”

“This kind of nonsense is like — and by the way, I know Caitlin Jenner got mad of me.  But I was just recounting an old joke from 2016.  I got no hate for that person.  And I’m sorry if I said the wrong name, I don’t have any hate.  But we’re making big deals out of things that aren’t big deals.  And we’re turning jokes into literal statements that are hate speech.

“And that s—t is nonsense — and you know it’s nonsense,” Rogan concluded.  “And you know it’s nonsense.”

Joe Rogan relayed the 2016 bit (for the Netflix show ‘Triggered’) to an earlier podcast guest, Tim Kennedy.  In it, he quipped that Bruce Jenner was driven to transition because of the environment of the Kardashian household. “Maybe if you live with crazy b—s long enough they f—ing turn you into one,” Rogan said. “Maybe you go crazy. Maybe that too. Especially those ones.”

Rogan was also blasted for ‘deadnaming’ Bruce Jenner while misidentifying Caitlin Jenner’s post-transition gender.

“He’s a homophobic, transphobic a—,” Jenner blasted back, while accusing Rogan of feeling inadequate given the Kardashian’s larger levels of wealth and success. “He does this all the time. My daughters have obviously done extremely well. He’s gotten his fame by putting other people down and making jokes about it.”

But that wasn’t the only Rogan podcast episode drawing extreme pushback from activist Spotify employees.

In a July podcast episode, Abigail Shrier, author of Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters, expressed serious reservations about young women undergoing gender transition therapy and operations.  Shrier strongly argued that most teen and pre-teen girls aren’t old enough to make such a serious, irreversible decision, and are oftentimes seeking social acceptance or escape instead of genuinely being transgender.

Shrier’s opinions on the matter (and Rogan’s agreement to them) drew howls of protest from certain Spotify staffers, who demanded the show’s removal or substantial editing. Currently, the episode is still available unaltered on the Spotify platform.

Additionally, activist employees also reportedly pushed for direct editing oversight over Rogan’s future episodes, which could include introductory trigger warnings, removal of controversial sections, warnings in episode descriptions, or references to ‘fact-checked’ alternatives for details cited during Rogan’s interviews.

In the moments following those demands, the employees also threatened to stage a walk-out or even go on strike. So far, neither of those actions has occurred.

So far, Spotify has largely pushed back and left all of the episodes and comments intact.  But the streaming platform has already removed earlier episodes involving controversial right-wing figures.  Spotify may have also forced Joe Rogan to issue a rare apology for comments linking left-wing Antifa activists to forest fires in Oregon.

At this stage, it’s unclear whether Spotify is planning future edits or additional removals.  So far, the decision has been not to interfere — at least any more.

More as this develops.

11 Responses

    • Kevin

      Unacceptable in today’s society, actually. That’s why the white supremacists broadcast underground and not on traditional media. You think Hitler radio is acceptable, too?

      • Brad

        Kevin – you don’t have enough science on what is “transphobic”, actually. What even is that?

        Secondly – who cares if Satan himself was on the show? Let people talk. I don’t care how evil they are. Use your brain. You’re an adult. Do your own research. If you disagree, great. If facts are wrong, great – call it out. Who gives flying eff who you platform? What do you have to fear? Marx, Nietzsche, Lenin, Che, Hitler… I would love to hear all of these losers. At least they will give me material to reflect on and agree/disagree with.

        Should not be hard for you to comprehend.

        • Kevin

          The first part of your post is an assumption. The second part is an opinion. You’ve stated no facts. It appears you don’t comprehend. As an adult, it’s a shame you don’t have a better hold on reality and a more solid set of core values. It was probably your poor upbringing.

          See, I can be an asshole with condescending remarks, also. You’re sad.

      • Allen

        After reading your posts Kevin you just seem very upset. Throwing insults and angry speech doesn’t fix things, it just makes divides wider. Have to learn to agree to disagree and still get along with people even if it’s a 100% disagree, that’s what being civilized human beings is.

        • Kevin

          I’m not upset. I am done pussyfooting around when someone takes a passive-aggressive approach toward an issue. Agreeing to disagree is a farce and a way to waste time discussing without pushing for change to happen. Do you agree to disagree with people who take a stance on something that isn’t civilized? C’mon, now. Reality check.

  1. oliver

    Regardless of your opinions on transgender people of course pre teens shouldn’t be able to consent to irreversible sex change. I mean we all agree they can’t give consent for tattoos, sex, marriage etc etc the list goes on. But suddenly people want to let them do this. I was a totally different person as a pre teen and whoever thinks giving children with or without parental consent that choice is an idiot.

  2. John Donkey

    If you don’t like Rogan because you think he is transphobic (or for any other reason) there is a very easy solution:

    1: Locate the JRE on Spotify
    2: Locate the “play” button
    3: DON’T press the play button

    You’re welcome!

    • Jerrod

      While that is one option, if someone is actually spewing hate and discrimination, there are other options and protest is one.

  3. JR

    Rogan’s show has been around for 10 years so Spotify knew what kind of content they were getting.

    A major appeal of the show has been it’s independence – it hasn’t had to conform to mainstream notions of censorship, topics, guests, and even runtime. Joe’s had full creative control. It would be a mistake for Spotify to try to put a saddle on a mustang.

    Having said that, I stopped listening to the show years ago because the guests were mostly political operators and propagandists, overly eager to get on Joe’s show for the exposure. But that was Joe’s choice and it’s worked out well for him