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Spotify and Joe Rogan promise to rein in vaccine misinformation

Musicians Neil Young and Joni Mitchell have already asked to remove their music from Spotify over the Rogan issue.

A trader is reflected in a computer screen displaying the Spotify brand before the company begins selling as a direct listing on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York
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  • Morgan Haefner
By Morgan Haefner

Deputy email editor

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Spotify and Joe Rogan promised to rein in vaccine misinformation. But it remains to be seen what they’ll do about an issue that’s seen major music artists walk away from the platform in protest. (See more below.)

The UN Security Council meets to discuss the Ukraine crisis. While Russia increased troop levels at the border, NATO warned Europe about its dependence on Russian oil and gas.

T-Mobile will fire unvaccinated staff by April. The company is moving forward with its strict mandate, and has given employees a deadline of Feb. 21 to get their first doses..

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What to watch for

Who else will walk away from Spotify?

Star podcaster Joe Rogan has been in critics’ crosshairs, but he apologized for covid misinformation, saying his show is “out of control.” CEO Daniel Ek said the company, which has 381 million users and a market cap of $33 billion, is “working to add a content advisory to any podcast episode that includes a discussion about covid-19,” among other things, but won’t “take on the position of being content censor.”

Musicians Neil Young and Joni Mitchell have already asked to remove their music from Spotify over the Rogan issue. Others are unhappy with royalty payments.

Here’s a quick recap:

2015: Spotify expands its platform to include podcasts

2020: Rogan signs an exclusive deal with Spotify

Dec. 31: Rogan hosts Robert Malone, a scientist who spreads anti-vaccine conspiracy theories

Jan. 10: 270 medical professionals sign an open letter calling for Spotify to regulate misinformation on its platform

Jan. 24: Young demands Spotify remove Rogan’s podcast or he will exit the platform

Jan. 30: Rogan apologizes, and Spotify promises to add content warnings

The US economy is beating omicron

Omicron hasn’t been a match for the rebounding US economy—at least when compared with the delta variant.

Even though the rapid spread of omicron has led to a record amount of Americans being out sick, there are already signs that the labor market is recovering. One example: Though initial jobless claims climbed along with omicron cases, they are now dropping—much more quickly than after delta’s peak.

A line graph showing the change in US jobless claims during the pandemic's delta and omicron peaks. Jobless claims were above 300,000 at the delta peak, and below 300,000 at the omicron peak.

In four charts, Quartz reporter Nate DiCamillo mapped out how US workers and companies are faring as the omicron wave wanes.

The after (online) life

With so much of our lives happening on the internet, it’s not just the extremely online who need to consider what virtual stuff they leave behind. That’s why more people are making digital wills. But what are they and what should they include? ✦ Try a seven-day free trial of Quartz membership to read how to make one and for access to all of our member-exclusive emails.

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