Neil Young has reportedly demanded his music be removed from Spotify due to vaccine misinformation shared on Joe Rogan’s popular podcast via the streaming service.
“They can have Rogan or Young. Not both,” Young, 76, said in an open letter to his manager and record label that was posted Monday on his Neil Young Archives website, according to Rolling magazine. Stone.
Rogan, known for his contrary and often baseless views on medicine, has faced widespread backlash for questioning the safety of vaccines during the pandemic.
NBC News hasn’t seen the original post, and it’s unclear why it was removed from Young’s website. A link to the original post titled “A-Message-To-Spotify” currently leads to a blank page. A rep for Young did not immediately respond to a request for comment overnight.
In the letter, the Canadian-American singer said he wanted his manager and record label to “let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all of my music removed from their platform.”
He said he was “doing this because Spotify is spreading misinformation about vaccines – potentially causing the death of those who believe the misinformation is being spread by them,” Rolling Stone reported.
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Young clarified that he was specifically referring to “The Joe Rogan Experience,” which is Spotify’s most popular podcast right now. Rogan signed a $100 million deal last year giving the streaming service exclusive rights to the show.
“With around 11 million listeners per episode, JRE, which is hosted exclusively on Spotify…has a huge influence,” Young said. “Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform.”
Demanding that his music be removed from the platform, he said, “Please act immediately today and let me know the timing.”
As of 7 a.m. ET Tuesday morning, Young’s music was still available on Spotify.
Spotify and Joe Rogan did not immediately respond to overnight requests for comment from NBC News.
Young isn’t alone in condemning Rogan’s broadcast on vaccine misinformation.
Last month, around 270 doctors, researchers and other medical professionals signed an open letter asking Spotify to introduce a misinformation policy, specifically citing “Rogan’s concerning history of spreading misinformation, particularly regarding the Covid-19 pandemic”.
“Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Joe Rogan has repeatedly aired misleading and false claims on his podcast, causing distrust in science and medicine,” the letter reads.
“By allowing the spread of false and socially harmful claims, Spotify is enabling its hosted media to undermine public trust in scientific research and cast doubt on the credibility of data-based advice offered by professionals. health,” he said.
The letter’s authors specifically took issue with an interview Rogan had with a doctor, Robert Malone, who said Americans had been “hypnotized” into wearing masks and getting vaccinated.
In an April 2021 episode, Rogan also appeared to discourage young people from getting vaccinated.
He also appeared to promote the use of ivermectin to fight Covid-19 last September after saying he was using the widely discredited drug himself after testing positive for the virus. The drug is typically used on livestock and health experts have urged the public to avoid using it to treat Covid-19.
Rogan said he was not “an anti-vax person” and should not be the source of medical advice, as he is not a doctor. He also said he thought his comments were exaggerated.