Robert Brook

I write on request.


How I listen to podcasts

I listen to a lot of podcasts. I’m not a particularly gregarious person, so I’m usually walking with headphones in.

I used to listen to the radio, really since I was born. Mostly BBC radio stations.

When audio became something I could subscribe to, I did. I’m not sure quite which podcast renaissance we’re enduring at present, but it’s great for me.

Now I use Overcast on my phone to listen to podcasts. It’s the best podcast app I’ve tried and I do recommend it.

I’m not a podcast completist, because there aren’t enough waking hours to listen to all the podcasts I subscribe to.

I most often sit in the ‘Newest’ view, which shows downloaded podcasts sorted by most recent.

I take it from the top, allowing the most recently published podcast to come up for an audition.

Although I do subscribe to a relatively large number of podcasts, I think I unsubscribe from one a week.

Each podcast puts its head on the block. The awful crimes that mean instance dispatch include: terrible sound quality, not actually terrible but still irritatingly bad sound quality, noodling or excessively soupy intro music, most backing music, glib rags to riches stories, Wikipedia page readings, oafish hucksterism, laboured ad reads, syrupy pleading for subscribers, podcasts about podcasts, podcasts about themselves, pretty much anything grisly or blood-soaked, fatuous retelling of the blindingly obvious, ponderous businessisms, flat in-jokes, self-congratulatory material, ... all else survives.

Marco Arment correctly identifies podcast discovery as still being a problem. His in-app catalogue is reasonable, but I really don’t want to use Twitter for recommendations. I’d like to see Overcast integrating Huffduffer.