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Will Podcasting Change the Way we Think?

September 1, 2008

Nearly one in five internet users (19%) has downloaded a podcast to listen to or view later — up from 12% in 2006. But podcasting has yet to become a fixture in the everyday lives of internet users, as very few download podcasts on a typical day. Yet, podcasting is on the rise among all ages under 50. See Pew Foundation research here.

How will podcast proliferation change the way we think? Podcasters pull down audio from reliable and unreliable sources. Will this medium, coupled with the internet, actually decrease reliable, accurate knowledge? Or will it increase specialty understanding? Do you podcast? What kinds of programs?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. ChrisC permalink
    September 1, 2008 9:51 am


    I am thankful for the ACL podcast. I know it is no subsitute for church attendance or to build community but being able to listen to a gospel centered message every week is valuable to me.

    I also podcast a church in Hawaii, New Hope ( that I previously attended.


  2. September 1, 2008 1:08 pm

    Glad to hear it’s been a help to you, Chris! Thanks for the feedback. Press on.

  3. September 1, 2008 8:33 pm

    Hey Jonathan, while Chris above may be getting fed responsibly from multiple pastors, I have observed things concerning Christian podcasts that have both been exciting and worrisome. Both sides of it have to do with the authority of the local church and its pastor/elders.

    On the good side I have seen believers positively impacted with greater understandings of their faith and how to apply their faith. This has resulted in many believers growing in truth, in mission and in their witness. Some of those who have been impacted have gone back to their local church and had a positive impact.

    On the negative side, I have seen many believers give more weight to their podcast pastor than their local pastor. I have seen them led astray and in open defiance of their own churches and pastors. Some might argue that this is good in some settings, but I have seen some great pastors lose their influence to iconic podcast pastors.

    I don’t have the answer for it, except that maybe some of the more influential guys could openly acknowledge on their podcasts that others are listening and then to address the broader audience in how to properly use podcasts while honoring their local pastors.

    Just some thoughts on it.

    Some great podcasts are NPR, some of the iTunes U offerings and some of the technology ones. And yours of course!

  4. September 1, 2008 8:46 pm

    Good thoughts from a pastoral/church perspective, Jacob. The undermining of local church authority and leadership could be very problematic. I wonder if there are non-church sectors that are experiencing a similar impact? I guess podcasting could make college classroom discussion interesting, especially if students are podcasting some poorly researched material.

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