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Daniel Ek: Too Early to Know if Joe Rogan Controversy Will Impact Spotify

Ek spoke to employees, some of whom reportedly pressed him on why the company continues to allow Rogan to host shows that indulge in anti-vaccine/mandate rhetoric. 

Ryan Hedrick

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Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

The controversy at Spotify involving Joe Rogan disseminating alleged COVID misinformation was addressed this week by CEO Daniel Ek

Ek hosted a town hall event where he spoke to employees, some of whom reportedly pressed Ek on why the company continues to allow Rogan to host shows that indulge in anti-vaccine/mandate rhetoric. 

“If we want even a shot at achieving our bold ambitions, it will mean having content on Spotify that many of us may not be proud to be associated with,” he said. “Not anything goes, but there will be opinions, ideas, and beliefs that we disagree with strongly and even makes us angry or sad.”

Ek also addressed investors. He said the company saw a double-digit increase in the number of monthly active users that listened to a podcast during Q4 compared to the prior quarter.

This week, Spotify also revealed that it was going to start placing advisory labels on podcasts that contained content related to the pandemic. Ek shouldered the blame for not acting on this type of thing, sooner. 

“We should have done it earlier, and that’s on me,” he said. “We don’t change our policies based on one creator nor do we change it based on any media cycle,” Ek said. “And while Joe has a massive audience, he’s actually the No. 1 podcast in more than 90 markets, he also has to abide by those policies.”

Elk said as far as the Rogan-COVID misinformation controversy that has ensnared the company, it’s too early to tell whether this past week’s event will have an impact on subscribers.  

“It’s too early to know what the impact will be,” Ek said. “Usually, when we’ve had controversies in the past, those are measured in months and not days.”

News Print & Digital

Report: More Than a Third of Twitter’s Top 100 Advertisers Have Exited

CNN’s Oliver Darcy shared the reporting done by the Washington Post that more than a third of the top 100 Twitter advertisers have abandoned the platform.

Eduardo Razo

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One of Elon Musk’s most significant challenges, as he now owns Twitter, lies on the financial side as the Tesla CEO attempts to make the social media stay afloat or at least somewhat profitable. 

However, CNN’s Oliver Darcy shared the reporting done by the Washington Post in his “Reliable Sources” newsletter that more than a third of Twitter’s top 100 advertisers have abandoned the platform.

With advertisers exiting, the lack of ad revenue is one of the most significant dangers to Twitter since it accounted for approximately 90 percent of its income last year.

The reporting also reveals that the pausing of ad campaigns is getting under Musk’s skin. The new Twitter owner lashed out at brands again Tuesday for “starving” the company of revenue. 

Musk also strongly suggested he never really created a “content moderation council” due to advertisers who “broke the deal” they allegedly had with him when they began exiting the platform after he “agreed to this condition.”

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News Print & Digital

Elon Musk: Ownership of Twitter Isn’t ‘Right-Wing Takeover’

Tesla CEO Elon Musk spoke with those who are still with the company, reassuring them that his ownership isn’t a “right-wing takeover.”

Eduardo Razo

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Last week saw Twitter have another mass exodus of staffers and Tesla CEO Elon Musk spoke with those who are still with the company, reassuring them that his ownership isn’t a “right-wing takeover.”

Furthermore, Musk stated that he doesn’t plan on moving the platform to Texas despite many suggesting he do so since, for him, it would send a wrong message. 

“If we want to move the headquarters to Texas, I think it would play into the idea that Twitter has gone from being left-wing to right-wing, which is not the case,” Musk said (h/t The Verge). “This is not a right-wing takeover of Twitter. It is a moderate-wing takeover of Twitter.”

However, Musk is open to the idea of having dual headquarters, one in San Francisco and another in Texas, but for now, his objective appears to be stabilizing the company after a rocky transition. 

Musk indicated he might be done with slashing employees, telling employees to refer potential staffers for engineering and sales positions.

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News Print & Digital

Blaze TV Hosts React To Controversy With Elon Musk, Twitter

Blaze TV hosts are reacting to the ongoing controversy involving Twitter as the company has seen mass layoffs under Elon Musk.

Ryan Hedrick

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Blaze TV hosts are reacting to the ongoing controversy involving Twitter. Last week, CBS News said it was halting its activity on the platform amid layoffs and resignations at the company. 

Jeff Fisher joined Pat Gray and Steve Burguiere aka Stu, on the “Glenn Beck Show ” Monday to discuss some of the latest developments involving Twitter including owner Elion Musk banning conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. 

Burguiere said it’s strange to see how left-leaning pundits have demonized Elon Musk following his acquisition of Twitter. 

“This guy should be a liberal icon,” stated Burguiere. “We lose sight of this because he says things about free speech that I guess is exclusively a right-wing issue.” 

Burguiere said that Musk should be able to do anything that he wants with Twitter considering the amount of money he invested to purchase the company. 

“This whole thing that he’s the icon of free speech, I don’t know if that’s true,” added Burguiere. 

Musk announced recently that conspiracy theorist Alex Jones received a permanent ban on Twitter for his involvement in denying that the Sandy Hook massacre took place.

“He (Musk) has been a hard no on Alex no matter what,” said Fisher. 

“He has apologized for it,” Burguiere said. “He’s also been sued for billions of dollars over it.” 

“The thing about Alex Jones is that some of us don’t like what he said,” Gray remarked. “But, who cares, that’s what you call free speech.”

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