In recent months one of four podcasts that make the Podtrac’s top 20 shows are News podcasts with the New York Times-produced The Daily leading the list for each of the past 39 months. So it should come as little surprise that nearly one in four (23%) of American adults now say they get at least some of their news from podcasts.
The latest data the from Pew Research Center shows podcasts are still most often a secondary source of news for most. Its data shows just seven percent of those surveyed report they “often” get news from a podcast. Another 16% say they “sometimes” get news from a podcast. The numbers are fairly similar to 2020 data. Pew’s survey, which was conducted in July 2021, also showed that there remains a lot of growth potential in the medium with 56% of adults saying they “never” turn to a podcast for news.
The Pew data also sheds light on which types of adults are most likely to use podcast as a news source. And with younger demos more digitally-focused, the data shows that extends to news listening. Pew says one in three adults aged 18 to 29 at least sometimes get news from a podcast. That compares to 12% of adults who are aged 65 and older. Among adults aged 30 to 39, Pew says 29% sometimes listen to news podcasts, while 18% of adults aged 50 to 64 do.
While there is a close correlation between age and podcast listening for news, Pew found gender was less a factor. It says 25% of men listen to news podcasts compared to 21% for women. Few differences exist across racial and ethnic groups too.
A larger gap existed based on education and income levels. Pew says adults with more of both are also more likely to get news from podcasts. It says 28% of adults with at least a college degree sometimes get news from podcasts versus 17% of adults with a high school education or less.
There are now more than two million podcasts, giving people plenty of shows and viewpoints to choose from. It could be why Pew says it does not see any big difference in listening habits based on political allegiance with roughly a quarter of Republicans, Democrats and independents all saying they occasionally get news from podcasts.
The Pew data is based on surveys of U.S. adults conducted July 26 to August 8, 2021 and August 31 to September 7, 2020. Read more about the methodology HERE.