Spotify staff outraged over Joe Rogan's 'transphobic comments and misinformation' - report

Workers at Spotify are said to be outraged at the company's support for Joe Rogan, one of its most high-profile stars, for his "transphobic comments" and "misinformation". 

The former Fear Factor host commands an enormous audience with his podcast, claiming the title of number one most popular in the US in 2020.

Spotify famously paid a reported US$100 million to Rogan to have him exclusively broadcast on the platform - which apparently upset staff at the company.

"I'm personally bothered by his transphobic comments and am concerned with the way he might spread misinformation," one Spotify employee wrote last year on an internal networking channel, Business Insider reported this week. 

A former Spotify employee added that the Rogan deal was the most contentious decision the company had ever made.

A resulting meeting with staff about the issue apparently didn't go well, with Spotify refusing to force editorial supervision over what Rogan says in his broadcasts.

The Joe Rogan Experience is wildly popular in part due to its controversial nature.

Previous guests have included infamous conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos and Gavin McInnes, a far-right extremist who founded the Proud Boys, the notorious neo-facist organisation classified as a terrorist entity by the Canadian government.

In addition to what his guests have said on the show, Rogan himself has come under fire for espousing anti-science views and comments he's made about transgender people.

In a 2018 discussion about trans athletes including New Zealander Laurel Hubbard, Rogan described transgender women as having "gorilla hands" and "size 14 feet".

Earlier this year in an episode with Jim Breuer, Rogan suggested that "dumb people" and "idiots" transition gender in order to be praised as "amazing".

He's also spread falsehoods about the COVID-19 pandemic, including claiming facemasks are only "for bitches" and that young, healthy people shouldn't get vaccinated.

The comments caused outrage from a wide variety of people including Prince Harry, who spoke about them on another Spotify podcast, Dax Shepard's Armchair Expert.

"I think the issue is in today's world with misinformation just, like, endemic, you've got to be careful about what comes out of your mouth when it comes to that because news doesn't exist in just news anymore," said the Duke of Sussex. 

"You're right 'don't listen to me', well don't say that. Just stay out of it. If you have a platform, with a platform comes responsibility."

Spotify has not commented on the Business Insider report.