The year in audio – The Verge


We are almost there. 2022. We are living in a time of deep uncertainty, so I am happy to be able to offer you something that you can count on: a Hot pod publish. I do what I can. Today we have a little summary of the news and some points on the trends to remember for the year. Aria and I have published articles on a specific guideline of the year. Mine talks about how every investment in audio over the past 12 months has served to capture the attention of our ears, and Aria wrote about the year in which podcasters were heavily represented at the television. You can read Aria’s here and mine here. Now let’s move on to the rest.


First the news, which we will quickly go through, so that you can enjoy this sweet and sweet end-of-year content.

iHeart shares year-end figures around the Black Effect Network

Let’s go back in time to September 2021. Around that time, iHeartMedia partnered with Charlamagne Tha God to launch the Black Effect Network, a network run by black leaders with the goal of reaching black audiences. Today, the iHeart Digital Audio Group exclusively shared details of the network’s past year with Hot pod, as well as its Latinx-focused My Cultura network, which launched in May.

Among the details: iHeart says 23% of its monthly podcast listeners, across all networks, are black, up from 19% the year before, and 21% are Hispanic, up from 18% in 2020. (Demographics are from Triton, the team says. Conal Byrne, CEO of iHeart Digital Audio Group, says the network accounts for more than 15 million downloads per month, as defined by the IAB.

“We spent a lot of investment and energy last year” on these two new networks, says Byrne, and the resulting numbers are “validation” that the effort is worth it. “I think what changed for us about Black Effect was to create this atmosphere of longer-tail creators who can get into podcasting, so not necessarily, in quotes, just Questlove or Jada Pinkett Smith, but also people like Jess Hilarious. “

I know everyone reading this has a lot of feelings about the data, so go ahead and let me know what you think. I’m always happy to see more representation in podcasting, what if that helps introduce the medium to a more diverse audience? It’s great too. A nice note to conclude this one.

Sorry, but I just have to highlight Spotify’s “Pod City”

the Los Angeles Times covered Spotify’s sprawling new campus and casually ditched what is apparently its internal name: “Pod City”. This is not a joke! Pod City comprises only one section of the new campus, which accommodates 600 employees, has 18 podcast studios, a theater, an indoor stage and ‘places where musicians can tinker with period instruments. “. Very well!

Nick Profiles Since when

Another cry for our friend Nick Quah to Vulture (and one with a Spotify angle). he profiled Since when, a show you all know I nibble on too. For those who like numbers, hosts Chris Black and Jason Stewart say the show averages 30,000 downloads per episode. (They’re also primarily sponsored by Spotify’s Anchor.) the Financial Time They also profiled them last week in terms of “podcasts capitalizing on friendships”. I think we can officially pronounce Since when to integrate. Do!

Global, which operates DAX ad exchange, acquires Captivate hosting platform

Global, a media and entertainment group, announced yesterday the acquisition of the Captivate hosting platform. The release says Captivate hosts 14,000 shows and that the platform will integrate directly with Global’s DAX ad exchange. The idea will clearly be to make more room for programmatic podcast ads by allowing these hosted shows to leverage this exchange for monetization. The programmatic continues to advance.

And now for our year-end content and a reminder that we’ll be back on Tuesday with our forecast for 2022. We need to see where we’ve gone before we know where we’re headed, though.

Notable things from this year, from myself and Aria:

  • More responsibility for audio job postings. Audio manufacturers have increasingly required that job postings state the exact salary in advance to prevent applicants from accepting lowball offers and to reinforce that those prices are fair (a risk that is heightened when communication in private, without the watchful eye of peers). Many more numbers had already started circulating on audio industry mailing lists when, less than a week ago, a bill was passed to require salary disclosure for all job vacancies. in New York, where many media companies are based. Frosting on the cake. -A B
  • Spanish-English podcasts made it big, with two main ones, La Brega and Everything for Selena, having a signature shared by Futuro Studios and a well-known public radio station. As Nick noted in Hot pod at the start of the year, the studio (a new division within Futuro Media Group) opted to partner in the hope that they would not need to raise additional funds but continue to produce and market shows ambitious with separate streams for each language – and it seems to have worked. -A B
  • Subscriptions have become a possibility for the future of the industry. Apple Podcasts took its biggest step in years with the launch of paid in-app podcast subscriptions, effectively preparing the industry to move to a different monetization model. Apple’s membership makes me think that the larger audience might also start to agree to pay for a podcast. Apple made us all wear AirPods. Can that make us pay for shows? -THAT
  • Podcast unions are negotiating. Unions in Parcast, The ring, and Gimlet, all notably under Spotify’s leadership, took action from late last year, with the latter two reaching deals in April and the old still in negotiation. As Ashley pointed out in the spring, the contracts that were made did not give members the intellectual property rights they sought, but they were still notable for shaping an area where reports of overwork and under -payment are pretty darn common. This month alone, the podcast employees at iHeartMedia also unionized, Calling out their recent predecessors. -A B
  • The line is starting to blur between audiobooks and podcasts. Several moves in audiobooks have taken place this year – Spotify bought Findaway, an audiobook distributor and creator, and Pushkin Industries, which led the way in supporting both audiobook and podcast production, continues to grow. deploy audiobooks to private RSS feeds. Storytel, the European subscription audiobooks app, bought Audiobooks.com, allowing it to gain a foothold in the United States. The lines continue to fade, as do the distribution models. Meanwhile, Audible took to podcasts last year. So, so fuzzy. -THAT
  • Joe Rogan has officially become fodder for parodies. Everyone got the memo: Enough people now know who Joe Rogan is that if you reference him he’ll land. Comedian Tim Heidecker delivered a whole mock episode of The Joe Rogan Experience for those who like the tracks to go on forever, but the jokes, bangs, and references really took all forms: a song about the failed romantic perspectives that Rogan fans had; the different SNL mentions that I noted in my column; a quick crack in a video by actor Matt Buechele; and, of course, the always interesting choice of making “Hoe Rogan” his Twitter display name. -A B
  • Businesses keep trying to take down radio. We continued to see platforms aiming for a slice of the radio pie. Spotify has rolled out its Car Thing device more widely, designed to facilitate streaming from the car; Amazon Music has launched a car mode, also designed for the same purpose; and Spotify also acquired Whooshkaa, software that turns live radio broadcasts into on-demand podcasts. Obviously, tech companies believe that they not only need to speed up the potential death of radio through their own devices, but also be able to make money from the programs that are broadcast on demand. -THAT
  • Everyone in Hollywood loves podcasts now. You knew this was coming. Hot pod announced the news of Quentin Tarantino’s new podcast project. Bad Robot by JJ Abrams launched an audio department with Spotify. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s Imagine Entertainment did the same with iHeart. Seth Rogen started a show with SiriusXM and Earwolf. And these four stories were only recent. I don’t expect this trend to slow down anytime soon, so maybe we’ll have that same point in 2022. But I’ll save that for my predictions. -THAT

That’s it! You did it. Thanks for the reading. we jump Hot Pod Insider this week because of the holidays, but if you do not have subscribed to this now, it might be a good time. I would suggest you give it as a gift, but honestly, I don’t see the entire extended family delighted to find in-depth audio industry scoops in their inbox every week. However, you should have fun. Hassle-free supply chain. Happy holidays and chat next week!



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