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Joe Rogan COVID row: Majority of signatories on Spotify open letter not medical doctors

It has been revealed that the majority of those who co-signed an open letter from the “global scientific and medical communities” to Spotify last week demanding the company take action against popular podcast host Joe Rogan are not medical doctors at all. 

 Last week, the 270 signatories of the letter claimed that Rogan was promoting what they called COVID-related “misinformation.” The controversy erupted after Rogan interviewed Dr. Robert Malone, inventor of mRNA vaccine technology, on his programme ‘The Joe Rogan Experience’ – which is exclusive to Spotify.

It comes as UFC boss, Dana White, jumped to the defence of Rogan at a press conference on Saturday. White backed early treatment for COVID in the form of ivermectin and monoclonal antibodies.

The letter slamming Rogan was widely reported by media outlets including The Guardian, Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, and Forbes.

Reports claimed a ‘coalition of doctors and health experts’ were asking Spotify to “implement a misinformation policy” in the wake of the interview with the hugely popular Rogan. The Daily Beast claimed that Rogan was “mainstreaming right-wing information,” while former MSNBC host Keith Olbermann last week attacked Rogan, calling him the “stupidest f—–g guy on the planet.” 

However, conservative news site The Blaze found that only 87 of the signatories are medical doctors or doctors of osteopathic medicine. The signatories include numerous nurse practitioners, vets, a dentist, and close to 100 Ph.D.s and Ph.D. candidates.

Physicians’ assistants, psychologists, medical students, a podcast host, and an engineer also made it onto the list.

A closer look at the Spotify letter shows that the majority of the signatories are either not direct medical providers, or are not legally permitted to practise medicine on their own.

Rogan, a comedian and podcasting giant, who has been dubbed the ‘king of the new media’ interviewed Dr. Robert Malone on the episode in question. Malone is an American virologist and immunologist who was a pioneer of mRNA vaccines. The prominent virologist has attracted attention for his stance on COVID vaccines. In December, Dr. Malone addressed parents as a “parent, grandparent, physician and scientist” as he cautioned parents against getting their children vaccinated. 

“I’m vaccinated for COVID and I’m generally pro-vaccination. I have devoted my entire career to developing safe and effective ways to prevent and treat infectious diseases,” Dr. Malone stated. In his comments which were widely circulated across social media, he warned: “Before you inject your child – a decision that is irreversible – I wanted to let you know the scientific facts about this genetic vaccine.”

In his interview with Rogan, Dr. Malone also criticised the COVID vaccine rollout and its attendant mandates; he also voiced concerns over mass formation psychosis.

Following the widely-shared interview, Dr. Malone was permanently banned from Twitter in late December, with the social media giant later banning the video of his interview with Rogan. 

In response, Malone said that he was uncertain exactly which tweet Twitter used as its justification for permanently banning him from the platform. 

A range of media outlets as well as a group of advocates, professors, scientists and medical professionals have urged Spotify to take action against Dr Malone’s ‘COVID- related misinformation’ sparked by Joe Rogan on his show, ‘The Joe Rogan Experience’. However, Spotify has not publicly addressed the letter, and the streaming platform has published three new episodes of “The Joe Rogan Experience” since the open letter was first reported last Wednesday. 

The open letter, which can be viewed here, asked Spotify to “take action against mass-misinformation events” on its platform after the group were outraged after what they termed Rogan’s “highly controversial episode” interview with Dr. Malone. 

Many media outlets were quick to circulate the letter. The Guardian went as far as to run a headline claiming that Rogan was a “menace to public health” – a claim asserted by the group.

Speaking out on the debacle, Dr. Malone told big tech that: “You can’t suppress information” as he argued that the information will always find a way to circulate despite the ‘censorship’ and Twitter ban which resulted from the explosive interview.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) boss, Dana White, has also backed Rogan amid the media storm. Rogan, who is a UFC commentator, has gained support from White, who backed early treatment for COVID during a press conference at the weekend.

White jumped to cageside commentator Rogan’s defence when he was told by a reporter about doctors petitioning Spotify at Saturday’s UFC Vegas 46 post-event press conference.

“Are they really?” he responded.

“Well, how about this – ever since I came out and said what I did, it’s almost impossible to get monoclonal antibodies,” he said. 

 “I don’t want to get too political and start getting into all this s***, but ivermectin and monoclonal antibodies have been around for a long time. Now all of a sudden you can’t dig them up to save your life, the doctors won’t give them to you,” he asserted. 

“Even when I did it here in Vegas, when I had [Covid-19] right before Christmas, I made one phone call and I was able to get it done. And that’s not some rich famous guy s*** – anybody could’ve called and got it back then.”

 “Now Rogan’s been talking about it and I went crazy talking about it, you can’t get those things to save your life now, literally.”

 “It’s disgusting,” White claimed. “It’s one of the craziest things I’ve ever witnessed in my life. And we’re not talking about experimental drugs or things – this stuff’s been around. Ivermectin, the guy won a Nobel Peace Prize.”

 Yahoo reporter Kevin Iole proceeded to ask White “are you a doctor?”, which drew a laugh from the head of the UFC.

“There you go, here he comes!” White said of Iole.

 “But I took them, and they both worked for me, so why shouldn’t I be able to take them again? Or other people?” he asked Iole, who declined to answer.

 “No, come on, dive in,” White replied. “You want to know what’s scary? You can get some [expletive] pain pills quicker than I can get monoclonal antibodies. Not maybe, that is a fact. They [expletive] hand out pain pills like they’re tic tacs.”

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