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Joe Rogan opens up about massive Spotify deal: 'It doesn't register. Seems fake.'

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For Joe Rogan, it hasn’t sunk in yet.

When it came to light that Rogan had struck an exclusive deal with Spotify to bring his widely-popular “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast to the streaming service, the news astounded many. Rogan, himself, says he still hasn’t wrapped his head around the developments.

In a recent interview with The New York Times entitled “Joe Rogan is the New Mainstream Media,” Rogan, a longtime UFC commentator, opened up about the deal and the wealth that comes with it.

“(I feel) weirdly richer,” Rogan said. “Like it doesn’t register. (It) seems fake.”

Rogan wouldn’t discuss the specifics of the deal, though the Wall Street Journal estimated he could see upwards of $100 million.

“It feels gross (discussing the terms),” Rogan said. “Especially right now, when people can’t work.”

Rogan has hosted over 1,400 episodes to date – not to mention dozens of additional episodes issued under the “JRE MMA Show” umbrella.

Why has the podcast become so popular over the years? Rogan attributes his uncanny success in the industry to a handful of factors. One of the main ingredients for Rogan has been his ability and willingness to speak openly.

“I would imagine on a show like Seth Meyers, there’s a bunch of other opinions involved,” Rogan said. “Right or wrong, in podcasting you’re getting that very pure, individual perspective. On my show, it’s my opinion and the guest’s opinion. That’s it. On network, it’s a focus-group collective idea of what people are going to like or not like. You don’t get anything wild. You don’t get anything that will get you fired.”


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Additionally, Rogan said he’s modeled his podcast around free-thinking. Unlike major political networks, Rogan can take each specific issue and analyze it without having an agenda.

“There is no balanced perspective to say: ‘Be free! Change your pronouns, change your name, be whoever you want,'” Rogan said. “On the Fox News side, they want to say ‘This is left-wing lunacy and everyone’s losing their mind.'”

A major part of his move to Spotify, Rogan said, was the proliferation of YouTube flagging and demonetizing his content.

“What Twitter is and what YouTube is are way bigger than a social media company,” Rogan said. “There is a real good argument that they should be like public utilities. … What has made society better today than it was hundreds of years ago is not just our prosperity. It’s the evolution of ideas. Anything that wants to limit discussion is dangerous to the evolution of ideas.”

Despite the move to Spotify, Rogan said listeners can expect the same unfiltered, self-driven content they’ve grown to love. According to Rogan, “selling out” isn’t in his future.

“Why would I sell out now?” Rogan said. “You sell out to get what you want.”


Photos: Joe Rogan through the years

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