An Analysis of Joe Rogan’s COVID-19 Apology

12 Pages Posted: 13 Jun 2022 Last revised: 27 Jun 2022

See all articles by Gavriel Steiger

Gavriel Steiger

Washington University in St. Louis, College of Arts & Sciences

Date Written: February 21, 2022


The COVID-19 pandemic has had an undeniable impact on the global community, affecting nearly all areas of life relating to people’s mental, physical, and financial well-being. Prior to the pandemic, the Kaiser Family Foundation reported that approximately 1 in 10 adults in the United States reported depressive or anxiety disorder symptoms from January to June 2019. Since then, these numbers have grown exponentially to 4 in 10 adults experiencing similar symptoms. Moreover, one effective method of determining a country’s economic activity is comparing the expected employment ratio of people over sixteen with the actual ratio. In 2020 the United States Census Bureau released that historical trends anticipated that the ratio would be 61.3%; however, the actual ratio was 51.5%. The differentiation between these two numbers indicates that far fewer people were employed than expected due to the pandemic. Most importantly, in the United States alone, the Johns Hopkins University and Medicine Coronavirus Research Center estimates that as of February 21st, 2022, there have been 78,479,134 confirmed cases and 935,335 confirmed deaths due to COVID-19. Therefore, when Joe Rogan utilized his podcast platform, which receives 190 million monthly viewers, to downplay and spread false information related to COVID-19, the public was justifiably and understandably outraged. The offense Rogan has committed could be an entire paper in its own right; however, this paper aims to focus on how he responds to his offense in the form of an apology. To accomplish this objective, this paper will have three sections:

1) Establishing an effective apology through Arron Lazare’s book On Apology.

2) Outlining the specific details of Joe Rogan’s offense.

3) Analyzing whether his apology to said offense fits the framework established by Lazare.

Keywords: COVID-19, Joe Rogan, Apology

JEL Classification: Y70

Suggested Citation

Steiger, Gavriel, An Analysis of Joe Rogan’s COVID-19 Apology (February 21, 2022). Available at SSRN: or

Gavriel Steiger (Contact Author)

Washington University in St. Louis, College of Arts & Sciences ( email )

United States

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