Joe Rogan signed a multi-year exclusive deal with Spotify in May 2020 to house his popular podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. Although the exact terms and the length of the contract cannot be confirmed, it is safe to assume that the popular podcast will continue to be streamed exclusively on the platform for years to come.
The deal was signed for a reported sum of around $100 million and the podcast is available to all 286 million Spotify users for free. An article by The Wall Street Journal revealed that Joe Rogan was initially offered significantly less money for the Spotify deal which delayed the move to the streaming platform. Spotify published an article to make the announcement following the announcement of the deal and cited the show's popularity:
"The talk series has long been the most-searched-for podcast on Spotify and is the leading show on practically every other podcasting platform. And, like all podcasts and vodcasts on Spotify, it will remain free and accessible to all Spotify users," says the article.
What is The Joe Rogan Experience?
Launched in 2009, The Joe Rogan Experience is a long-form video and audio podcast hosted by UFC color commentator and stand-up comedian Joe Rogan. Since its inception, the podcast has hosted a vast number of celebrities, authors, athletes, musicians and notable people from a variety of fields.
The podcast was streamed on YouTube prior to the Spotify deal and enjoyed a loyal fan base there for over 10 years. Of course the podcast market itself is vast, but The Joe Rogan Experience gained heightened popularity due to Joe Rogan's unadulterated expression of thoughts and his lack of political correctness.
Despite the popularity, Joe Rogan received a lot of criticism for hosting controversial figures on the podcast and his own opinion's on sensitive topics such as the role of transgender athletes and the use of psychedelic drugs.
Following the show's launch on Spotify in September 2020, Spotify employees had raised concerns over the transphobic remarks in one of the archival episodes and demanded for the content to be censored. Billboard later reported that The Joe Rogan Experience was the most popular podcast on Spotify by December 2020.