25 September 2023

Podcast survey finds listeners all ears

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A survey by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) has revealed a trend towards true crime stories on podcasts, especially among women.

The ABC’s third annual Podcast Survey reveals that almost half (44 per cent) of podcast listeners favoured true crime as a subject in the past month, up from 30 per cent in 2017.

The surge in listening to true crime, including the ABC’s new series Unravel: Barrenjoey Road, presented by investigative journalist, Ruby Jones, was strongest with women, among whom listening increased by 15 percentage points.

Director of Specialist Content at ABC, Judith Whelan said women also led an overall increase in podcast engagement, with almost two-thirds (65 per cent) claiming to listen to more podcasts in 2018 than the previous year — as compared to 51 per cent of men.

She said while women turned to true crime, men were more likely to look for laughs, with the number of men listening to comedy podcasts up 10 percentage points.

“Our appetite for podcasts continues to grow across multiple genres, led by compelling true crime stories with real impacts on injustice in our society,” Ms Whelan said.

“At the heart of such podcasts are strong stories that engage listeners, no matter their gender.

“As Australia’s leading podcast producer, the ABC is proud to share such remarkable stories with listeners.”

She noted that nine out of 10 adults (91 percent) were now aware of podcasts, while one in three (33 per cent) claimed to have listened to a podcast in the past month.

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