iTunes Reviews and Ratings for Podcasts
Bryan Landers

Yeah I am pretty disgusted with the Apple’s state of all things podcasting. I love Apple because my products just work. So why do they seem to care so little about the podcasting experience for both podcasters and listeners?

When I launched the Veteran Resource Podcast over 50 episodes ago I made it into the #1 spot for New & Noteworthy for my Category in 2 days and stayed there for the full 8 weeks. Then I helped Team RWB launch the Eagle Nation podcast and they were killing it. We are talking over 2k downloads the first day (compared to my 200 or so the first week), and it took a few weeks for that to get into New & Noteworthy even though it was showing as the #1 “Top Podcast” for it’s category. That’s when I knew that things weren’t right. I started analyzing it more and noticed many of the podcasts in N&N were a lot more than 8 weeks old (which was the cut-off before). I also noticed that they would only change places every few days leading me to believe it was just manually being shifted by some poor little Apple worker.

Last month we launched Podcast Playground, the first podcast network for kids with our first show Wacky News and am at 1000 downloads and thirty-nine 5-star reviews. It hasn’t seen N&N for the Kids & Family category and under Top Podcasts for the category it’s not even showing in the top 200. Normally I would be ok with that, but it is being beaten out by many shows who haven’t had an episode since 2010, only have 3 episodes total, and 8 ratings. I can’t think of an algorithm in the world that would justify that.

What is sad to me is that people (including me) still use iTunes to listen to podcasts. We have to because it’s the leader which means that some people MIGHT put their podcasts elsewhere, but most WILL put it in iTunes. If you are a podcaster you have to play in their pool or you can’t compete. As a listener I tried moving to other players and found that not 100% of the podcasts I listened to were there…so I keep going back.

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