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New Podcast Launches Up Slightly During First Half Of 2023.


The number of new podcast launches was up slightly, according to global midyear numbers from the podcast search engine Listen Notes. It reports there were 104,277 new podcast debuts during the first half of 2023, compared to 99,467 new podcasts at the midway point of 2022. Those new shows released 14,875,368 episodes during the first half.


Based on the number of new shows launched so far this year, the tally is likely to be similar to 2022’s year-end total when Listen Notes counted 214,592 new podcasts. The figures suggest the decline that colored launch numbers last year as media habits grew more normalized has largely ended, and the post-pandemic climate is one of stability.


As is usually the case during the first quarter, January was the busiest month for new show debuts this year with 22,691 releases logged by Listen Notes. It was followed in March with 20,276 and 19,758 in February. Similar to 2021 and 2022, fewer shows came down the pike during second quarter. June had the smallest number with 10,503 podcast launches worldwide.


Overall, Listen Notes says there are now at least 3,138,645 podcasts worldwide that have published more than 169.6 million episodes.


Another mid-year measure of podcast stability comes in the tally of so-called “dead shows.” After that number swelled during the pandemic when casual producers launched shows, then abandoned them, Listen Notes reports the number of “dead shows” adds up to 14,239 so far this year. That is 43% fewer than the number of shows that disappeared during the first six months of 2022.


The high-water mark for show deaths was in 2020 when Listen Notes saw 117,124 shows end production. Listen Notes considers a show to have died when the RSS feed is deleted, or its iTunes “Completed” tag is marked “yes” by the publisher.


Like a year ago, two-thirds of all podcasts that have been created so far have originated in the U.S. Not unexpectedly, most shows (60%) are in English. That is steady with last year. The tally shows 11% of shows were in Spanish, and seven percent were in Portuguese as Indonesian (5%) and German (3%) again rounded out the top five.


The top genre remains Society & Culture at midyear, which represented 13.9% of all shows. It is followed by Education (12.6%), Arts (9.3%), Business (9.1%), Religion & Spirituality (8.4%), Comedy (7.0%), Health & Fitness (6.3%), News (5.2%), Leisure (4.9%), Music (4.6%), Sports (4.4%), TV & Film (3.1%), Technology (2.5%), Kids & Family (2.2%), and Science (2.1%).


San Francisco-based Listen Notes was launched in 2017 by Webian Fang, who in the latest update to users says Listen Notes’ search results now offer the ability to track shows using ChatGPT.

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