According to Wikipedia, the word ‘podcast’ is a portmanteau formed by combining ‘ipod’
and ‘broadcast’. It was ‘created’ by journalist Ben Hammersley back in 2004. The year
before, a weekly chat show launched by Matt Schichter called ‘the BackStage Pass’ was
thought to be the first podcast despite it not yet having a category name.
Like with any new platform, I slightly turned my nose up at the potential of podcasts when
they first rose up – could anyone really create something compelling enough to gain a mass
audience? The answer of course was yes – the podcast industry is apparently very profitable
these days. Over 50 million people listen to podcasts each month and listeners of course
mean ad revenues and ‘sponsorships’. Like other forms of digital content, podcast
audiences are often specific offering a unique level of targeting. From a PR point of view,
clients have had great feedback from ‘appearances’ on niche industry podcasts – Brett
King’s Breaking Banks for example – exploring the ongoing change in the banking sector and
highlighting the best of the best in FinTech from around the world.
My updated view now I am an avid listener is that podcasts are exactly the form of content
we need – in a time when we need instant gratification and insist on juggling multiple tasks
at the same time – I can download a podcast on almost anything from feminism to Sesame
Street. And I can listen / learn / be entertained on my commute or the school run or whilst
dashing between meetings or going to sleep. A good podcast recommendation is a real gift
and a question that often flashes up on my Instagram stories.
So for your listening pleasure and my own selfish needs I asked the eclectic, content-hungry FieldHousers for their top recommendations. In no particular order:
The West Ham Way: Exclusive news and content about West Ham United Football
Club. Guaranteed reliability and accuracy on rumours and inside information.
My Dad Wrote a Porno: British podcast hosted by Jamie Morton, James Cooper,
and Alice Levine. Each episode features Morton reading a new chapter of a series
of erotic fiction novels, titled Belinda Blinked, written by his Northern Irish father
under the pen name Rocky Flintstone; Morton, Cooper and Levine react to the
material and provide running commentary.
Very Important Playlist: Jane and Bianca craft playlists around hot celebs and ‘kewl’
people they love. Oh! They also like talking about diversity, entertainment, music
The Guilty Feminist: feminist comedy podcast hosted by Deborah Frances-White.
Created by Frances-White and Sofie Hagen in 2015, the podcast features guests on a
panel to discuss topics on and related to feminism, and is recorded in front of a live
Freakonomics: American public radio program, also distributed as a podcast which
discusses socioeconomic issues for a general audience.
Guardian Long Reads Audio: selection of the Guardian’s long read articles which are
published in the paper and online- in-depth writing from around the world on
immigration, crime, business, the arts and much more.
Spirit: A ‘boozy’ podcast about mythology, legends, and lore. Every episode, co-
hosts Julia and Amanda mix a drink and discuss a new story or character from a
wide range of places, eras, and cultures.
Reasons to be Cheerful: A podcast about ideas. Former Labour Party leader Ed
Miliband, and Sony Award-winning radio host Geoff Lloyd talk to smart thinkers from
around the world.
Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review: Mark Kermode joins Simon Mayo to give his
verdict on the week's movies.
SRSLY: Pop culture podcast from The New Statesman
Dirty John: Dirty John is an investigative journalism podcast hosted by journalist
Christopher Goffard and created by Wondery and Los Angeles Times.
The Butterfly Effect: Join bestselling author Jon Ronson as he traces a very strange
butterfly effect. A teen in Brussels had an idea – to make porn free and easy to
stream online. The consequences of that idea are mysterious, delightful, surprising,
and sad. This 7-part series takes you on a journey to places you’ll never expect.
S-Town: An investigative journalism podcast hosted by Brian Reed and created by
the producers of Serial and This American Life.
The High Low: Weekly pop culture / news podcast by Dolly Alderton and Pandora
Sword & Scale: Bi-weekly American podcast exploring nonfiction stories of true
Hardcore History: Part storyteller, part analyst, Carlin has mastered the art of
looking at subjects from multiple angles and dissecting and thinking about them in
original ways. He isn’t afraid to go deep or to inject historical context into modern