Pandora to add podcasts for its 76m US users
November 14, 2018 · Updated July 19, 2019 · 3.1 minutes to read
Pandora, a US music service, has announced the launch of its podcast offering, powered by what it calls the Podcast Genome Project. There are screenshots at Engadget (and other publications). You can sign up for early access here.
“The Podcast Genome Project recommends the right podcasts to the right listeners at the right time, solving the questions, “is there a podcast that’s right for me?” and “what should I listen to next?” It evaluates content based on more than 1,500 attributes – spanning MPAA ratings, timely and evergreen topics, production style, content type, host profile, etc – and listener signals including thumbs, skips and replays.”…At launch, Pandora has partnered with top-tier publishers including APM, Gimlet, HeadGum, Libsyn, Maximum Fun, NPR, Parcast, PRX+PRI, reVolver, Slate, The New York Times, The Ramsey Network, The Ringer, WNYC Studios, and Wondery.
Libsyn appear to be the only host available to independent podcasters that is included in Pandora’s launch offering. Libsyn calls this an “exclusive” partnership, and has announced that Libsyn customers should email their VP of Podcast Relations Rob Walch - email@example.com - if you want your show to be listed on Pandora. Speaking on a special episode of the company’s podcast, Walch said that initially there are 420 shows from Libsyn available in Pandora, and that this “is a really good day for podcasting”.
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Opinion - Pandora’s a big deal for the US, but is not available anywhere else. A geo-locked service which only lists podcasts from a limited list of publishers appears underwhelming at first glance; but this may open many new listeners to podcasting in the US, and act as a gateway to help grow the industry.
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Steven Goldstein wonders whether the SNL skit about podcasting actually set the industry back.
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