It seems like everyone and their mother has a podcast these days, and that’s more than likely a direct result of one man’s massive success with the platform: comedian / actor / UFC commentator / TV show host / martial artist / podcast king, Joe Rogan.
Rogan is easily the most successful prominent podcaster in the world right now, having turned his discussions on a wide variety of topics into big bucks. He became so profitable that he landed a massive deal with Spotify in 2020, but how much did the audio streaming service pay him?
$100 million dollars. That’s right, Joe reportedly secured a tenth of a billion dollars with Spotify in exchange for pretty much all of his content on the platform, exclusively posting full episodes of his Joe Rogan Experience podcast to the streaming service. While Rogan’s YouTube channel is still active, full episodes of his podcasts are no longer published to that channel — rather, there are only clips.
The comic signed what’s been deemed a “multi-year” contract with Spotify, one that he said “feels gross” because he landed it during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when people were having difficulty finding work and providing for themselves financially.
But some are speculating that it may begin to feel gross for Rogan for other reasons, and a lot of it has to do with how Rogan was able to secure such a large following for himself in the first place.
At the heart of commercialism and art is the idea of “selling out.” On one end you have a bunch of weird artists who think that the only way to engage in true expression is to be flat broke all the time and have everyone look at you like you’re crazy and not understand a word of what you’re talking about. “So cool man, starving artist.” Puh-lease.
spotify every day since they signed joe roganhttps://t.co/5ORYhEeQhC pic.twitter.com/s5s1xFukLn
On the end of the other spectrum you have folks who are so concerned with making money moves that any semblance of enjoyment or creative expression becomes a vehicle to maximizing profits. Projects become huge advertisements, and individuals will go so far as to hack off parts of their body and surgically shave their bones down in order to “appeal” to folks and monetize their social media feeds.
Some outlets, like The Verge, are postulating… Brinkwire short summary.