Joe Rogan, one of the world’s highest paid and most popular podcast hosts, is giving air to anti-vaccine narratives.
On his Spotify exclusive podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” Rogan told listeners that if a 21-year-old asked him if they should get vaccinated, he would suggest no.
“People say, do you think it’s safe to get vaccinated? I’ve said, yeah, I think for the most part it’s safe to get vaccinated. I do. I do,” Rogan said on the podcast. “But if you’re like 21 years old, and you say to me, should I get vaccinated? I’ll go no. Are you healthy? Are you a healthy person?”
“If you’re a healthy person, and you’re exercising all the time, and you’re young, and you’re eating well,” Rogan continued, “like, I don’t think you need to worry about this.”
Media Matters brought attention to the podcast episode on Tuesday, which was released on April 23.
Since signing Rogan to a licensing deal reportedly worth more than $100 million, Spotify is no stranger to controversy spurred by the star’s remarks. Rogan apologized in September for spreading misinformation about the West Coast fires.
Spotify did not respond to a request for comment about Rogan’s recent episode.
Rogan, who was speaking with comedian Dave Smith on the episode, said his children both got Covid-19 but had minor symptoms.
“I hate to say that if someone’s children died from this. I’m very sorry that that happened. I’m not in any way diminishing that,” Rogan said. “But I’m saying the personal experience that my children had with Covid was nothing.”
As Rogan acknowledged, children are not immune to Covid-19. In fact, more younger people are getting hospitalized as new variants emerge. And even if a healthy young person were to get the virus and experience minor symptoms, they still risk spreading the disease.
Tech platforms have taken action against vaccine misinformation. Both Facebook and Twitter have removed false claims about Covid-19 vaccines. Spotify, as well, has removed misleading content including a podcast in March. A Spotify spokesperson said at the time, “Spotify prohibits content on the platform which promotes dangerous false, deceptive, or misleading content about COVID-19 that may cause offline harm and/or pose a direct threat to public health.”