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The battle of the one-star reviews

The battle of the one-star reviews

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  • Exclusive: There’s been a significant increase in one-star reviews in Apple Podcasts since 1st July, according to analytics company Chartable, which tracks rankings and reviews across a number of podcast directories. Of the most one-voted, four of the top ten shows are true crime podcasts, including the #1.

    • Obscura had over 663 one-star ratings by Sunday (without a review). A number of those ratings still appear in the US store at the time of going to press.
    • Not to worry. Ratings don’t count for the Apple Podcast trending chart. Apple Podcasts is only used by 50% of podcast listeners anyway.
  • Fireside is changing its stats to better align with the IAB standards, it’s told its customers in a newsletter. The company tells us it’s currently considering IAB certification.

  • The open-source podcast directory gPodder is looking for a new maintainer before the end of the year. It’s integrated into several podcast clients.

    Aug 15 2023: This broken link now points to the Internet Archive.


  • Exclusive: If you’re seeing podcasts downloaded by a user-agent called googlebot-video - Google have confirmed that this useragent is used to index audio for all Google products including Google Podcasts. “The audio is used as a signal for ranking and recommendation,” said Zack Reneau-Wedeen to us. They’ve told us they plan to update their developer’s guide. (You should probably categorise it as a bot).
  • The above change is in an open user-agents list on Github. There’s an accompanying Slack group - if you’d like an invite, reply to this email.


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