Former TV chef Pete Evans has now had his podcast removed from Spotify as companies continue to distance themselves from the controversial media personality.
On January 12, Evans took to Instagram to reveal that his “podcast channel has been removed” from the streaming service and urged his followers to subscribe to his paid subscription website, which he vowed, “will always be uncensored for you all”.
The anti-vaccination advocate seems to believe that the removal of his podcast is an attempt to “silence” him for interviewing doctors about medicine that he deems to be “dangerous.”
However, a spokesperson for Spotify has told news.com.au in a statement they prohibit any content that promotes “dangerous, false, deceptive, or misleading content about COVID-19”.
“Spotify prohibits content on the platform which promotes dangerous, false, deceptive, or misleading content about COVID-19 that may cause offline harm and/or pose a direct threat to public health,” the spokesperson said.
“When content that violates this standard is identified it is removed from the platform.”
Evans’ habit of spreading misinformation and QAnon conspiracy theories also resulted in the former My Kitchen Rules star being removed from Facebook last year after he continued to breach the platform’s protocols around the COVID-19 pandemic.
Evans made it very clear over the course of 2020 that he thinks the virus, which has claimed the lives of 1.66 million people globally, is a hoax and has consistently espoused conspiracy theories about the topic.
While everyone is entitled to their opinions and to employ critical thinking, the issue of misinformation about COVID-19 — and the subsequent protests around mask mandates and social distancing — has contributed to the world’s inability to contain the virus which has now been wreaking global havoc for a year.
Facebook has previously removed individual posts uploaded by the paleo proponent, but a spokesperson for the social media site has confirmed that the entire ‘Chef Pete Evans’ page has now been deleted.
In a statement released on December 23, the spokesperson said, “We don’t allow anyone to share misinformation about COVID-19 that could lead to imminent physical harm or COVID-19 vaccines that have been debunked by public health experts. We have clear policies against this type of content and we’ve removed Chef Pete Evans’ Facebook page for repeated violations of these policies.”
The loss of his Facebook page is likely the smallest blow Evans has been dealt this year. In April, his company was fined $25,000 after promoting an expensive lamp which he suggested could ward off the virus and he was dropped by both his publishing house and I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! after posting a meme that contained what appeared to be a neo-Nazi symbol on his social media channels.
Evans had over one million followers on his now-defunct Facebook page, and currently has 278,000 followers on Instagram. The cookbook author took to the photo-sharing platform on December 24, posting a video from “conscious comedian” JP Sears, alluding to his fall from Facebook grace, but not directly commenting on it.
The health crisis is ever-evolving. If you suspect you or a family member has coronavirus you should call (not visit) your GP or ring the national Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.