Neil Young gives Spotify an ultimatum: Him or Joe Rogan

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Neil Young, Joe Rogan
Neil Young, Joe Rogan

Neil Young has never been a fan of Spotify, withholding his own music back from the streaming service until 2019. An advocate for better-sounding digital music, Young was never a fan of the sound quality Spotify offered but eventually relented. It’s not like people couldn’t stream Young’s music—he has his own website with ridiculously high-quality digital versions of his entire catalog.

Speaking of Neil Young’s website, earlier today, he posted an open letter to his management and record label, asking them to give Spotify an ultimatum. They can either have access to his classic song library or continue offering sentient tubs of whey powder a platform to spread COVID misinformation.

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The letter, which has since been removed from Young’s website, accused the streaming giant, which likely provides Young with fractions upon fractions of cents for his beloved work, of spreading misinformation about vaccines via The Joe Rogan Experience podcast.

“I am doing this because Spotify is spreading fake information about vaccines – potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread by them,” the note read. “Please act on this immediately today and keep me informed of the time schedule.”

When someone asks for a schedule or is Neil Young, you know they mean business. If both? Forget about it. Rogan’s podcast, a Spotify exclusive and a leading cause of brain rot among American males aged 18 to 34, has frequently come under fire for platforming anti-vaccine advocates just as the United States edges ever closer to one million COVID deaths.

“I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform,” he continued. “They can have [Joe] Rogan or Young. Not both.”

Young joins a chorus of more than 270 doctors, nurses, scientists, and educators calling on Spotify to de-platform Rogan, who continues to refuse to spend eight years researching things like myocarditis. Spend eight years, Joe.

In the open letter from these health care professionals, many of which actually know about myocarditis, they wrote:

With an estimated 11 million listeners per episode, JRE, which is hosted exclusively on Spotify, is the world’s largest podcast and has tremendous influence. Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, though the company presently has no misinformation policy.

As noted, the letter is no longer accessible, so it’s unclear if a response from Spotify eased Young’s concerns or if his deal with Spotify is going the way of the Pono.

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