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Spotify did not discover Joe Rogan and Joe Rogan did not create Spotify, but their alliance portends the future of a closed podcasting ecosystem. Until September 2020 The experience of Joe Rogan was available through RSS feeds, YouTube and podcast players. Its content appeared from time to time, but in general Rogan did his show and the various distribution platforms allowed him to do it without having to worry and watch every episode – if he violated politics, he could be removed and so on. happened . This is a world where Rogan stans and haters can find common ground.

Rogan could have been “deplatformed” in the sense that his episodes could be deleted from YouTube or removed from podcast player searches, but interested listeners could still search for him via RSS. Theoretically, everyone would win, unless you believe that Rogan should not be published anywhere at any time.

Take action Infowars creator Alex Jones, for example: Apple Podcasts removed his show because of hate speech, as did various other podcast applications, but anyone can still listen via RSS feed. They should look for it – it doesn’t appear in hit charts or searches and is not promoted in the app, but it takes advantage of the open podcast system and serves as a counterweight to every platform controlling what people can and can’t hear.

This has always been the promise of open RSS: even if one platform doesn’t like your content, you can still be heard. However, podcasting is moving away from this world, which means that other platforms that welcome the death of Spotify must take into account how it handles the situation. The reaction is coming for them, so Amazon Music, SiriusXMand Apple Music ending the current dispute over the sale of more subscriptions seemed short-sighted. All three companies have their own interest in the success of specific podcasts, whether they are platform exclusive or not. subscription service. Just because Rogan is the target today doesn’t mean one of their shows won’t be tomorrow.

Of course, the business will work, and obviously Amazon will try to convert some of Neil Young’s listeners to its platform. But what if SmartLess or a Wondery show or My favorite murder to address the worst? Amazon, which licenses or owns these and other broadcasts, must have a strategy in place.

We are moving away from a world where the podcast player acts as a search engine, to a world where they act as creators and publishers of this content. That means more reaction and room for questions like: why are you paying Rogan $ 100 million to spread what many consider harmful information? Honest questions!

This is the price of high-profile deals and attempts to expand podcast revenue. Both creators and platforms are involved in any content that is distributed, hosted and sold, and both need to think clearly about how they will deal with the inevitable contradictions.