Why your favorite podcast is only on Spotify now

Do you like podcasts? Do you hate Spotify? We have news for you …

My favorite podcasts keep disappearing from my apps. What is happening?

Oh it’s easy: Spotify owns them now.

Wait what?

Yeah. Spotify has splashed millions of people by buying studios and then turning the podcasts they create into exclusives, which means new episodes will no longer appear on your other app feeds.

Why would Spotify do this to me?

It’s not personal – it’s a business move. People listen to podcasts much longer than a single song. Many go up to two hours at a time. That’s a lot of advertising time. Also, the more free users Spotify gets, the more opportunities it has to convert them into paid subscribers. It works: Spotify just overtook Apple as America’s favorite podcast streaming service.

Did they put on heavy weights?

Sniff. Yes, they took on heavy weights.

How about Reply All?

Yes, but… you might want to read this first.

What else has become a Spotify exclusive?

There is a lot of. 544 days. How to save a planet. Confessions on the deathbed. Michelle Obama’s podcast. Crime show. Armchaired and Dangerous (with David Farrier). And more. They have Bill Simmons and Kim Kardashian and Joe Budden and Amy Schumer. The full list is here.

Wait – do they have the farrier?

They have the farrier.

What about Joe Rogan?

Hush. No. (But also yes.)

What else should I listen to then?

I don’t mean to brag, but all of The Spinoff’s best podcasts are on Spotify (and everywhere else you get your podcasts, too): The Fold, Remember When, When the Facts Change, Gone By Lunchtime, The Real Pod, First , Business is Boring, and NÄ“, our new podcast by Māori, for Māori. That should keep you occupied. If you want more, here’s a list we made for the soundtrack of your stupid little containment walks.

So you are saying I probably need to create a Spotify account?

If you want to keep all of your podcasts in one stream at the same time, then yes you do.

I hate that.

You’re not the only one. The backlash is real. Here’s a popular Reddit thread, I Won’t Listen to Gimlet’s Shows on Spotify, a Wired story titled Spotify Breaking Podcasts, and Someone Hating Using the App. A quick spinoff survey found that some staff also refused to use Spotify for podcasts – and one of them already has a premium membership. It was the principle.

Seems like music and podcasts need to be separated.

It’s true. Spotify hasn’t said if it will create its own podcast app, but it seems like an obvious business decision if it is spending all that money (and it will likely have a separate subscription fee).

OK, I created a Spotify account and followed my favorite accounts …

Well done!

… But I don’t like the layout.

Oh yes. Didn’t we mention this? That’s crazy. It is not designed for podcasts. It’s for the music.

So podcasts and music will appear together in my feeds now?

– I’m afraid of it.

What should I do with my Stitcher, Overcast, and Apple Podcast apps?

You can delete them or continue to use them. Or just use Spotify for exclusives.

But how will I know when new episodes drop?

You can turn on notifications for the shows you follow. This is what we do.

Should I start paying Spotify subscription fees?

Only if you want to avoid ads. Otherwise, it’s free to listen to podcasts on Spotify.

OK OK. Is there a chance they’ll change that horrid lime green logo?

Law?! With a bit of luck. Facebook has just become Meta, so literally anything is possible.

About Elaine Morales

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