How have your podcasts habits changed during the lockdown? In the days of old, you may have binged a series or a weekly favourite on your commute to and from work. But with working from home now the norm (and likely to stay this way for a long while too), our podcast listening habits seem to have changed quite a bit too.

A recent Ofcom report revealed that podcasts had a boost in lockdown, with entertainment and talk show podcasts coming up top (we probably wanted a distraction!). More than one in ten of us did listen to a coronavirus related podcast though, and quite a lot of young people switched off live radio to listen to podcasts instead during this time too.

A study conducted by the Pulse Award (a collaboration between the British Podcast Awards and the Wellcome Trust) also came up with some interesting findings. They revealed that a third of us listened to more podcasts over lockdown, but another third actually listened to less!

It makes you wonder whether the podcasts being made will change over the next year. Will we still have an appetite for podcasts released daily if we’re not commuting every day of the week? Will we want Netflix style binges instead to fill up our days, if we are less likely to get distracted by colleagues or other people? 

Let us know about your podcast habits by responding with your thoughts to this email and we might include it in a future newsletter.

Here are the guests on the world of podcasts this week:

If you have heard a great guest on a podcast that you think that this newsletter should be featuring, let us know by filling out this form.

British Podcast Awards corner (powered by Acast):

Let’s quickly mention two more podcasts that were winners at the British Podcast Awards earlier this year. The Log Books, a series that delves into the archives of the calls at the LGBT+ Switchboard, was the winner of the Best New Podcast. The judges said that it was “a surprising, moving, beautifully produced and important podcast.” As a listener to this podcast (and someone who is gay) it’s particularly touching to hear stories from callers that feel like they could have come from yesterday, but are actually from decades ago.

The winner of the Spotlight Award, the award that goes to the podcast that helps bring in big audiences to the podcasting world, goes to The Guilty Feminist. The judges said that it is “intimate, honest and candid. It’s changed the landscape for women podcasters as well as making a really conscious effort to bring under-represented voices to the forefront.” Episodes continue to drop every Monday.

Here are our podcast picks for the week ahead

Media Tribe with Shaunagh Connaire – The most fascinating part of a news story is not always the story itself, but how the journalist or correspondent pursued it and the risks they took along the way. In this interesting new series, Emmy nominated journalist Shaunagh Connaire interviews journalists about their work. You’ll hear the BBC’s Lyse Doucetabout having to dress up as a man to report a story whilst covering a story and CNN senior international correspondent and ‘Television Journalist of the Year’ Nima Elbagir on the psychological effects of reporting from difficult areas. It’s an interesting listen to anyone, but especially for those who are keen to get into journalism, at a time when opportunities are hard to come by and persistence is key. 

Brilliantly Easy, Stupidly Difficult – A six part series that is aimed for those interested in the world of business, but is actually suitable for anyone who wants to think about mulling over some of life’s biggest issues. This series looks at the choices we make in our life, what leads to them and the importance of talking with others. In the first episode, presenter Robbie Dale explores how with life we can sometimes go too much with the flow, resulting in us ending up in a place where we just get stuck. He says: “The default mode of floating led me to a good, even enviable life, until I realised I was drifting off course. The pang of dissatisfaction that I had felt I could now articulate as a lack of active choice, a realisation that no matter how good things were, I hadn’t really chosen to be there and I didn’t want to be.”

Futile Attempts (At Surviving Tomorrow)is the new podcast from production company Novel, which follows critically acclaimed comedian and performance artist Kim Noble’s search for what makes life worth living. The podcast is available to listen to in full on Spotify now, with episodes dropping weekly on other listening platforms. 

[chosen by Spotify]

How They Made Us Doubt Everything – In 1988, with temperatures breaking records across the world, there were stern warnings to the world about a new threat facing the future of the world: climate change. Yet just over 30 years later, less than half of Americans think that climate change is man-made, even though 97% of scientists believe that it is. 
What happened? According to this new Radio 4 podcast series, a reason for this distrust is down to tried and tested tactics that try to undermine facts and science, which are used by industries that would be under threat by any governmental change. These tactics have not just been used by oil industries against environmental causes, but also by tobacco companies in the past to undermine a link between smoking and cancer. 
Similar to other BBC Radio 4 podcasts like Tunnel 29, episodes of the series will also be broadcasted on the radio, but all ten episodes are already available to listen to on-demand.

Armchair Explorer – Our final podcast recommendation is all about travel, which might seem a bit contradictory as we’re not able to travel much at the moment. But hearing stories of adventure and travel actually makes you feel more connected to the world, and actually a bit hopeful that normal times will soon return. In this series Aaron Miller interviews people who have ditched their laptop and have gone on an adventure, from British Travel Writer of the Year Emma Thomson to pro sailor Mark Towill. Also, according to my Instagram everyone has been in Cornwall and Devon, so hope you all had a great time.

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That’s all for this week.

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