College students, of all people, understand the importance of convenience. Amazon allows a worldwide marketplace to be at your fingertips and Netflix gives a database of entertainment so no one has to pay for overpriced movie tickets. This level of convenience makes the busy life of a student easier.
In an age where on-demand content is as important as it has ever been, podcasts have emerged as the go-to source for entertainment. One would think that visual content would surpass audio in a landslide. Podcasts connect with young people by offering free on-demand platforms and a variety of topics that fit all interests.
In a study conducted by Edison Research, the term “podcasting” was known by 64 percent of the American population in 2018 and 40 percent of those americans have listened to a podcast before. Both these statistics are up four percent from 2017. According to podcast insights, there are over 630,000 podcasts available for listening.
There is no shortage of podcast topics. Here is a breakdown of podcasts that have been successful in their respective genres.
NEWS and POLITICS
With digital content dominating the market, publications have been forced to adapt or lose viewership. “The Daily,” by The New York Times, is a 20 minute, five-day-a-week podcast which puts a new spin on delivering the news. It is hosted by political journalist Michael Barbaro. The focus of the show is on delivering the news from the perspectives of the journalists at the Times.
What sets The Daily apart from other news and political podcasts is that the journalists discuss their stories and comment on what they wrote that day. This show caters to people who are on the go but want to stay up to date with current events without picking up a hard copy of the newspaper.
In 2017, Times reported that the “The Daily” surpassed 100 million downloads. If on-the-go news is what you are seeking, The Daily will satisfy that.
Serial is an absolute must listen when it comes to podcasts. Serial debuted in 2014 and has since etched itself into the Mount Rushmore of podcasts. According to The New Yorker, the show reached number one on iTunes charts without a single episode being released.
The podcast is told from the perspective of an investigative journalist played by host and creator Sarah Koenig. She investigates crimes that have already taken place in real life. Audio from the real people involved is used with Koenig as the interviewer.
The story is nothing new. There are a lot of crime documentaries to choose from. However, Serial captures the story perfectly without the need for a visual. Episodes can range from 30 minutes to an hour. Serial is great to listen to while driving in the car to pass by the time.
In every major city in the country, you will find a sports talk radio show. These shows cater to the sports interests of the local population. The problem with live radio is that there is no way to listen to your favorite show if you don’t tune in at the right time. With the transition to podcasts, live shows can be recorded and posted later for anyone to listen.
“The Herd with Colin Cowherd” offers great coverage on national sports with a host that is not afraid to take an unpopular view on topics. The Herd airs on Fox Sports radio, though it was previously an ESPN show before a falling out between Cowherd and the network after he made comments about baseball players from the Dominican Republic and their education level. Cowherd later apologized for his comments and on a later show explained his move to Fox was a better career move. He has since relocated to Los Angeles and hosts one of the most downloaded sports podcasts in the country.
Cowherd has made a name for himself through his strong opinions. Not all are well received by fans which makes The Herd good for debate and controversy.
There are many podcasts to choose from when it comes to sports commentary. The interest in the show depends on the sport fan’s interests and different teams they want to follow. For good national sports coverage, The Herd will keep your attention.
The culture of gaming is similar to the sports world because there are plenty of genres. For a podcast that produces up-to-date analysis on the latest games and comedic dialogue, the Giant Bombcast fits that criteria.
Being one of the more well-known podcasts, the Giant Bombcast has been airing shows since 2008. Their niche is game reviews, discussing the latest news in the industry and humorous commentary about video games that resembles arguments between buddies while playing games in the living room. That is, if you and your buddies were professional video game journalists.
The downside of the show is that they are typically an hour and a half to two hours long so it takes time to get through an episode. However, there is no substitute for good content and the Giant Bombcast is good content at its finest.
The podcasts listed here are merely a taste of what the podcast industry has to offer. Even for the most unique of interests, there is a podcast out there talking about it. So take a break from staring at a screen and dive into the world of audio masterpieces. You will not regret it.