In the decade since the inception of the Joe Rogan Experience, the UFC commentator has well and truly established himself as the uncrowned king of podcasting.
A show that in its formative years largely consisted of stoned conspiracy talk with stand-up comedians has continued to evolve and now sees some of the most influential figures from the world of pop culture sit across from Joe and discuss topics in the long-form discussion format.
It is hard to overstate the size of the JRE within the podcasting sphere. Boasting more than eight million subscribers on the PowerfulJRE YouTube channel, and with total monthly podcast downloads in the hundreds of millions, the recent news that Spotify splashed the cash to make the JRE exclusive to its platform by the end of the year is really no surprise.
Of course, even for someone as successful as Rogan the reported sum of more than 100 million dollars is probably enough to make platform exclusivity a good financial decision, but why has the standup comedian decided to leave the world's largest video sharing platform?
It appears that Joe's departure from YouTube has been foreshadowed for some time, with many speculating that the reason the podcast is no longer broadcast live is due to repeated copyright claims forcing offending videos to be taken down.
Censorship on YouTube, in general, has been a hot button issue on the platform in recent years, with many content creators also living with the ever-present fear of another ad-pocalypse which could decimate revenue in an instant. So, while the massive pull of the JRE might provide Rogan more recourse to deal with the Google-owned giant, it's hard to argue that some of the content on the show probably isn't what YouTube would consider advertiser-friendly.
Not only is there huge financial incentives for Rogan moving his podcast over to the world's largest audio streaming service, but he can now produce the kind of unfiltered and uncensored show the JRE has always prided itself on being.
In many ways, this situation is similar to when shock-jock supremo Howard Stern signed an eye-watering deal to make his nationally syndicated radio show into a Sirius XM exclusive in 2006, to avoid content restrictions imposed on him by the Federal Communications Commission while he was broadcast on terrestrial radio.
The Spotify deal not only provides Rogan with a sizeable upfront sum, but it also allows him to have creative freedom to produce the content he wants to. But what's in it for Spotify?
Well, the Swedish media services provider has been attempting to gain a foothold in the ever more lucrative podcasting sphere for some time now, so what better way to do that than agreeing to exclusive terms with arguably the world's most influential show.
In addition to this, while detractors of Rogan's move to the platform immediately pointed out that the huge sums Spotify is reportedly paying may seem excessive, news of the deal has seen Spotify's share value skyrocket to its highest in nearly two years, more than likely meaning that the deal has already paid for itself before a single episode has been released.