No one in South Korea listens to podcasts

One of the new business books I have in my to-read pile is Groundswell by Forrester Research analysts Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff.

My copy came last week courtesy of McGraw-Hill UK who distribute the book in Europe and South Africa.

I still have two other business books on the go at the moment – and two at once is about the max I can handle – so I’ve not yet started it. (I need to soon, though, as it’s slated for an FIR Book Review podcast with Shel which we plan to publish this month.)

Meanwhile, I’m keeping an eye on much of the online commentary I see about Groundswell.

Which is how a post on the Groundswell blog the other day caught my attention, with this chart:


The chart itself doesn’t make clear what ‘user-generated content’ means. In this context, it’s podcasts and video as a quick look at chapter two in the book, from which the chart comes, indicates.

Much to ponder here when you look at the usage differences between countries.

What struck me in particular was:

  • No one in South Korea listens to podcasts
  • Over half the Japanese read blogs
  • There is a stark difference between Japan and South Korea in viewing user-generated video – 20% and 5% respectively
  • The British and Germans don’t participate much in conversations on blogs compared to the Japanese and South Koreans

I would say much of the reasoning for these states of affairs is to do with differences in national cultures more than anything else.

Mind you, the book may explain it differently which I’ll find out when I actually read it.

How would you explain such differences?

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Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. Rob Safuto

    There are definitely some people in South Korea listening to podcasts. My Mets baseball podcasts attract a handful of downloads from South Korea each month. So while the percentage of podcast listeners may be small there is still an audience to be found in South Korea.

  2. neville

    Heh! We have (or had) at least one listener to FIR in Korea, so we both know there are some people there who do listen to podcasts.

    That’s the trouble with stats like these – we need to see them in the context of the people who were surveyed which isn’t necessarily representative.

    That’s clear in Groundswell; perhaps I should have made it equally clear in the post.

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