In a shocking announcement late Saturday afternoon, Wondery parted ways with Mike Boudet and his Sword and Scale podcast prompting Sword & Scale to abruptly inform its Patreon supporters of the major news.
The partnership that creator Mike Boudet had enjoyed with the podcasting giant allowed him to scale his critically and commercially acclaimed flagship show into the top of the true crime podcasting world.
Incongruity Media Inc., as it became known, spawned hardcore true crime shows that included Sword & Scale, Monstruo, Sword & Scale Rewind, and This is War.
We have decided to part ways with Mike Boudet and Sword and Scale.— Wondery (@WonderyMedia) March 9, 2019
Boudet also recorded a brief announcement on the Sword and Scale podcast feed stating that all of the shows on his network will cease to generate any new content indefinitely because of the termination from the Wondery network.
Mike Boudet specifically names the creator of the Lore podcast Aaron Mahnke, and Rabia Chaudry from the Undisclosed podcast as being directly responsible for leading the crusade to remove Boudet’s media company from the internet.
Boudet claims that the pair of fellow podcasters lead a campaign to pressure advertisers to cease supporting the Incongruity Media shows.
Without the backing and infrastructure of Wondery, Incongruity Media Inc. felt it could no longer continue to produce the entirety of its shows, including the hit show Sword & Scale. They subsequently made a call to the bulk of its employees informing them that they would be laid off.
Boudet is no stranger to controversy but his most recent antagonistic action, a social media post on International Women’s Day, was received by many as offensive and misogynistic and appears to have been the final straw for Wondery.
Additionally, Boudet has been criticized in the past for being inappropriate towards female fans online and for exploiting the 911 call of a minor on one of his podcast episodes. Lastly, Incongruity Media, specifically the Monstruo podcast, have been criticized for its graphic content and for being insensitive to certain segments of society as well.
Being well known in the true crime podcast community, Aaron Mahnke of the hit podcast Lore has been outspoken in his criticism of what he feels were Boudet’s insensitive treatment of his fans and folks on social media in general.
Boudet and Mahnke subsequently had a few words for each other on Twitter as a rivalry and feud between the popular true crime podcasters emerged.
Mahnke took to twitter to to share his reaction and thoughts surrounding Wondery and their decision to drop Boudet:
Here’s what I’ll say about the Sword and Scale guy blaming me for his podcast going away. After this, I’m moving on.— Aaron Mahnke (@amahnke) March 9, 2019
First, I don’t listen to his show, so it’s never been about his show. He works hard. I’m sure the production value is amazing. I’ve never attacked his show. /1
Second, folks say “if you don’t like what he says, just block him”.— Aaron Mahnke (@amahnke) March 9, 2019
But I blocked him months ago. Despite that, he still somehow reads my timeline and tweets about me.
I never sought him out. Other people sent me screenshots. And if they’re offensive, I comment. /2
In the last few months, he’s become more aggressive. And that’s led to hundreds and hundreds of people complaining to the network that published his podcast.— Aaron Mahnke (@amahnke) March 9, 2019
So today, his network decided it was better to not give him a home. So they cut tied, not me. /3
Here’s the key: his podcast was independent (published by himself alone) long before he joined that network. And he has an enormous amount of support on Patreon. He has every tool he needs to keep going.— Aaron Mahnke (@amahnke) March 9, 2019
But he has chosen to stop. He canceled his own show, not me. /4
Of course, it’s easier for him to say that “Aaron and Rabia did it!” We certainly were part of that chorus of hundreds of people who complained.— Aaron Mahnke (@amahnke) March 9, 2019
But he canceled his show on his own. That’s not on Rabia. That’s not on me. That’s on him and him alone. /5
Sword And Scale Announcement
In an email to their Patreon subscribers Sword and Scale posted Saturday March 9th:
“It is with great sadness that I must announce that Aaron Mahnke and Rabia Chaudry have been able to get us kicked off of the Wondery Network, which means we will no longer be putting out free shows and other shows such as Sword and Scale Rewind, This is War, and Monstruo will be coming to an end.
PLUS episodes will still come out on a regular schedule on Patreon, and then be available on our new platform once that’s fully built, but the regular free show will be discontinued until further notice. The final recorded episode (EP 134) will be released exclusively on Patreon on March 17th, and PLUS 43 will be available tomorrow.”
In the pre-recorded release on the Sword and Scale premium feed, Boudet elaborated on what he claimed was Aaron Mahnke and Rabia Chaudry having engaged in virtue signaling and thus compelling them to feel justified to censor his show.
Free Speech Vs. Social Justice
Boudet blames this hyper-sensitivity to his comments to an ongoing culture war in this country and he views his right to free speech on social media as the latest casualty of the social justice warriors and a victimhood mentality that is pervasive in the social media landscape.
In the interim, fans and supporters of the Sword and Scale podcast will still be able to get episodes through the Patreon platform. The recent announcement of season two of Monstruo which was slated to debut on 09.19.19 remains to be uncertain now as well as all of the other podcasts from the Incongruity team.
Patreon is still hosting Sword and Scale as of the time of this article’s posting but Mike Boudet has indicated recently that he is currently in the works to create his own Patreon styled subscription platform so that he could secure his right to free speech and would no longer be subjected to what he sees as social justice mob attacks.
What do you make of this feud between podcast creators and the subsequent ousting of Boudet from Wondery Media?