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Jon Stewart calls ‘overreaction’ to Joe Rogan, Spotify ‘a mistake’

Jon Stewart called the controversy currently surrounding popular podcaster Joe Rogan an “overreaction” and defended him in the latest episode of his podcast, “The Problem with Jon Stewart,” on Apple TV+.

Stewart defended Rogan and his show, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” and said that unlike some right-wing television hosts, Rogan is not “an ideologue in any way” and is open to being corrected when he’s wrong.

“There’s no question that there is egregious misinformation that’s purposeful and hateful, and that being moderated is a credit to the platforms that run them,” Stewart said. “But this overreaction to Rogan, I think, is a mistake.”

Stewart further called the outcry over COVID-19 misinformation on Rogan’s podcast “overblown rhetoric.” He gave the example of a recent episode, in which Rogan battled with Josh Zepps over Rogan’s claims that there is an “adverse risk” of myocarditis — an inflammation of the heart muscle — among 12- to 17-year-olds who receive the vaccine.

Stewart noted that Rogan acknowledged he was incorrect about the effects of the coronavirus vaccine on children and young people.

“Don’t leave. Don’t abandon. Don’t censor. Engage,” Stewart said.

He said he thinks “there are dishonest bad actors in the world and identifying those is so much more important to me.”

Stewart, the next recipient of the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, added that he is “more worried about the algorithm of misinformation than the purveyor of misinformation.”

“Misinformation will always be out there, but if the algorithm drives people further and further down the rabbit hole, the algorithm is the amplifier and the catalyst of extremism,” he said.

According to Stewart, Rogan “has power because so many people listen to him.” The Conversation reported this week that an estimated 200 million people download Rogan’s podcast each month.

Tags COVID-19 misinformation Joe Rogan Joe Rogan Jon Stewart Spotify Spotify

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