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MushroomNovaCat t1_iy81axg wrote

I don't like podcasts but I like having something playing on TV or my phone so it checks out.


iller_mitch t1_iy81qnw wrote

>suggesting that the practice might help fulfill basic psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness.

Makes sense. Particularly for long running podcasts where you grow fond of the hosts. But parasocialization isn't without its risks.


MocoMojo t1_iy82wtc wrote

Agree. I wonder if an analogy would be masturbation. It fulfills a biological urge (orgasm vs. need to belong), but long term you are deprived of a more meaningful two-way relationship where there is some give and take.


austinrose7 t1_iy85aim wrote

I’m too lazy to articulate why but this is really bleak to me.


justhereforass2 t1_iy86z2r wrote

For sure, have been listening to podcasts for a decade. They’ve been a huge help during some very isolations times, but also just good entertainment and informative too. I know many years ago it was and still can be difficult to breach certain topics and discuss things at length. It’s really nice to hear others dive in deep on interesting subjects where as in person the likelihood of having similar conversations are very minimal.


klosnj11 t1_iy86zcx wrote

Agreed. The replacement of genuine human interaction with cold digital replacements is absolutely bleak. We now live on a world with eight billion humans; more mass in human than mass in all other animals combined. Yet we can not find people to spend time with?

People seem to find in person interaction more and more difficult. Is it because of our reliance on these media surrogates? Will our willingness to look another human in the eyes, to feel anothers embrace, to laugh and dine with another with ease, will these all be things of the past at some point?


[deleted] t1_iy89ng1 wrote

I have found this to be true anecdotally as well. I’ve had a lonely couple of years and regularly listening to a podcast does really seem to help me feel less lonely.


fanghornegghorn t1_iy8au9l wrote

That's why I listen to them. I can never shake a sensation of loneliness. Even when I'm with people.


Cadmium_Aloy t1_iy8b3ir wrote

If it helps, I'm going to use this as an impetus to try to use podcasts more mindfully to body double and stop being stuck in executive dysfunction loops. Something about body doubling really helps me get going when I need to clean or do a task (a part of me assumes having that connection there is less uncomfortable than being alone, so it's one less anxiety in the way).

I can't rely on my friends to help me all the time, because then I'll never do the dishes. I'll look to podcasts as a supplement.

It's just the task of finding the right podcast that I often get stuck on....


CALsHero09 t1_iy8c9pm wrote

>Will our willingness to look another human in the eyes, to feel anothers embrace, to laugh and dine with another with ease, will these all be things of the past at some point?

I dont believe so. Things like podcasts are only one facet that is being addressed. There is no interaction. No physical connection. Nothing but a screen to look at and a speaker to listen to. I think eventually, people who are heavily into this type of thing, will eventually look past the podcast or whatever it is and decide they want social interactions just like these podcast people had since they seem to be enjoying it. Or start a podcast of their own and that in itself is a form of human interaction.


crrieger t1_iy8ci5v wrote

A podcast isn't a person that you connect with on a tangible level. People are right, it's a weak substitute for genuine interactions and likely makes us lonelier in the long run as our ability to have in-person connections atrophies. I can hear them talk, but no one hears me.

I realized I was doing this awhile back as my job has very little need for me to talk to a person face-to-face. I email or text most things whenever possible to avoid interacting in person. Podcasts and audio books filled the gap for awhile, but now I just sit in silence most of the day.

Some of us simply don't have the wiring to hae actual friends. Podcasts and audiobooks are marginally better than facing rejection when we try to "put ourselves out there." At least a podcast doesn't tell you to go away.


Vegan_Harvest t1_iy8czey wrote

That would explain why I listen to podcasts even when I hate the people making them.


SBBurzmali t1_iy8f6a1 wrote

It's still a parasocial relationship, that's never the best idea.


Zealousideal_Pie_573 t1_iy8jisw wrote

Idk about all that, but I had problems falling asleep for years mostly due to anxiety and stress. A friend suggested I listen to podcasts on topics I like and now I fall asleep like a baby.


Maelja t1_iy8lh0o wrote

I am an introvert. My wife is an EXTROVERT. For the last two years we have transitioned to work from home, our children had moved out just prior to COVID. I am living my best life. She is listening to podcasts at 1.5 speed ALL DAY long.


Emergency-Eye-2165 t1_iy8p346 wrote

Pretty sure the Ricky Gervis podcast/radioshows saved me from depression on multiple occasions


Dr_Edge_ATX t1_iy8q2sc wrote

I worked remotely pre-Covid and then was back in an office once Covid hit. When we all went remote my company actually asked if I had any tips for working from home and one of my tips was that listening to podcasts can make the day feel better because it makes it feel like you're part of a conversation. Everyone sort of laughed and was like really? It gets that lonely?

And I was like I'm not sure lonely is the correct word but you do lose a lot of mental and social stimulation from working at home. And as creepy as it sounds if you listen to one podcast long enough you do feel like you know the hosts and bit and that you're sort of part of the conversation even though you're just engaging in your head.

Anyway just thought this was a cool study that sort of backs up my theory that had no evidence besides my own experience.


EasterBunnyArt t1_iy8rha4 wrote

Add lets plays as well (at least for me).

There are a lot of games I have no interest or skill in playing but I love the lore and stories. I also love listening to stuff when I paint so it makes painting less quiet.


jhnwhite1 t1_iy8tjd8 wrote

Josh and Chuck are fam now.


Gausgovy t1_iy8v3fw wrote

Don’t have friend, listen to other people have friend, then get back to work!


joiedevivre4 t1_iy8w72e wrote

I completely disagree. It might do so on A level, but it is no replacement for true human connection. Everyone will, eventually, need someone with their skin on in order to have a true, balanced and healthy life.


BeccaSedai t1_iy8xdo0 wrote

When a long-running RPG podcast finally ended their campaign I cried because it felt like losing a friend group. I was aware the whole time that it was a parasocial relationship, but it was still surprising how sad it made me.


Heterophylla t1_iy8xkxd wrote

In the olden days , podcasts were called radio, and you just left it on in the background all day. Served the same purpose.


foxwaffles t1_iy902w0 wrote

Yep, parasocial relationships is what drives the entire Kpop machine. It's really sad to me to see so many young people talk about their idols as if they're personal friends or even kids they feel protective of. It's an industry built to make obscene amounts of money for the fat cats at the top who call the shots and work the idols half to death. The exploding streamer culture in China is built on this too with new agencies popping up to recruit young girls to suck money out of lonely, overworked young men


LunchBox3188 t1_iy9191d wrote

This makes sense, at least in my case. I'm generally introverted and I keep to myself mostly. My job allows us to listen to stuff on our phones while we work. I listen to podcasts all the time and I really feel as though I know the hosts. I've spoken directly to them via email and messages and I've also had things I've submitted featured in an episode. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I don't actually know these people and I need to take a step back...from their bedroom window and put down the chloroform soaked rag.


BuckeyeCreekTTV t1_iy91wt3 wrote

I assume it’s double the effect for streaming gamers


crimsontape t1_iy94450 wrote

It doesn't replace people, but it does satisfy my need for higher rung discussions that don't devolve under the weight of a challenging topic, or, the reasonable and common fact that it's impossible for a given group to know better answers without satisfying a knowledge gap. The kind of talk that bears a quality of emotional control as well as some academic discipline to get us somewhere other than someone's golden tomb of an echo chamber.


TheDeathofScatman t1_iy94fyj wrote

My grandpa always had talk radio on. I picked that up from him and pretty much have podcasts on all day at 2X speed since there are so many I like. Except when I am doing work that requires too much thinking, then I switch to music because I find speaking distracting. I definitely get faux social satisfaction from it.


OneArmedNoodler t1_iy94ze0 wrote

Or maybe people just enjoy learning new things, hearing other people's opinion, or just like entertainment? Why does everything we do have to have some nefarious psychological underpinning that will eventually lead to the downfall of civilization?


crimsontape t1_iy96ab2 wrote

Actually, there's a great deal of evidence for human sexuality being very much tied into our social habits, and our propensity for orgasms has a lot of social utility and feedback loops. That's why it's nice to feel sexy and know it, man or woman. And, if you look at men and women, and how they select a partner and extra-partner (be it cheating or some arrangement), across the timelines of 20-30, 30-40, 40+, the sexual nature of attraction changes profoundly, as do the feedback loops. And we seem to make a big deal out of trying to find a "best of both worlds - competent, sexy, sexily competent, and competently sexy". Our propensity for an orgasm plays implicit roles in our partner selection as well as explicit roles in our ability to sustain medium to long term intimate partners. For most people, if you cut that off at "cumming for babies" well, phew, that's a bit utilitarian, and definitely not sexy. And, like I said, for some reasons obvious and not-so-obvious, we like to feel sexy.

We're not voles and not praying manti, either. Our semen doesn't turn into a cement, and females don't eat the heads of their mates. Our closest cousins, the Bonobo, has more in common with us than most are comfortable with. Look up Bonobos and tell me you don't see "Uncle Bob" somewhere in the photos; and then look for their sexual habits. Not all primates are like this - it's very unique behaviour in the grand scheme of species.


FishAndRiceKeks t1_iy96zkv wrote

Makes sense to me. I like to put on a podcast even if I'm not really paying attention. Same as some people liking to leave the TV on for background noise. Silence is deafening sometimes.


chobobot t1_iy98vvr wrote

"I have lots of friends!", pulls out Overcast app.


hobbytownusa t1_iy9a6s8 wrote

It doesn't help me, I just feel muzzled.


katwoodruff t1_iy9bndb wrote

Is that why I hate podcasts then?


screech_owl_kachina t1_iy9bw0b wrote

I've noticed parasocial bonds forming in me if I listen to a podcast too frequently. It's to the point where I purposefully cycle between different ones and don't binge any so this doesn't happen and I remain more detached.


MushroomNovaCat t1_iy9cwkt wrote

I agree. In the past we lived in smaller, close knit groups where we socialized all day with each other. Now that there are many of us and our daily work has become highly specialized and solitary many of us spend more time alone by necessity. I don't think it's wrong to use what social connections we have access to in order to preserve our mental health even if they don't provide ideal social interaction.


NoMathematician5832 t1_iy9dpau wrote

This is true, I listen to Cum Town and Nick, Stav, and Adam are my best friends now


postart777 t1_iy9ffms wrote

That's just sad. No time for real conversations: just podcasts during commutes to meaningless jobs.


Accujack t1_iy9g7cf wrote

Chinese stream fans have the same issues with parasocial relationships as people in the US do. Quite possibly North Koreans, too.

Just because you dislike the capitalist system doesn't mean it's the root of all evil. Unrestricted capitalism is a problem, but so is unrestricted socialism.


silashoulder t1_iy9guex wrote

I said this ON a Podcast back in June, and the host looked at me like I was on fire.


PorkChop8088 t1_iy9l9km wrote

I have a few podcast I put on when feeling lonely and it definitely helps me get centered.


alternixfrei t1_iy9lpfd wrote

Yeah i sometimes feel like a dog, putting on podcasts or tv, so it feels like there's people in the flat.


alternixfrei t1_iy9lqgb wrote

Yeah i sometimes feel like a dog, putting on podcasts or tv, so it feels like there's people in the flat.


LeaCTrockboys t1_iy9npxl wrote

Wow, I can't wait until my best friends Nick Mullen and Adam Friedland hear about this!


reddituser567853 t1_iy9qygr wrote

Feeling sexy is a status thing, for mate selection. Ejaculation can be tied to bonding, more so for women, and that's for the purpose of offspring investment with a mate, not society at large

Bonobos are not our closest, chimps are.


[deleted] t1_iy9rgdl wrote

Stuff You Should Know! It’s two very likeable, low-key dudes who do deep-dive research into random topics and can make literally anything interesting. They keep it upbeat, unbiased, and PG (which is just more comfortable for me when I’m running low on emotional reserves). No conflict or strong emotions, just comfortable banter, interesting facts, and a chuckle or two.


BadAtExisting t1_iy9vics wrote

I work in TV and film. Trust me when I say this is more of the same celebrity culture. It’s amazing the lengths we need to go with security sometimes just to shoot scenes on location with certain actors. People think they have some sort of connection and/or relationship with a character they played. Or, more frighteningly, after watching every PR press junket interview these actors do, they somehow think they know the actor deeply personally. The online battles that’s drama kicked up by fans of different actors can be funny. Particularly when you’re standing there on set and Twitter is all a flutter about some dumb between actor drama not at all happening on set. (Sometimes actors don’t like each other and they get their chairs physically separated, though that usually means some other actor there for the day or week’s chair is between them, nothing ground shaking, just treating them like the overgrown toddlers they can become.) All the manufactured online drama can be a distraction, but most of these people have their team (assistant, manager, PR) managing their social media for them and they never see the mess surrounding them. Some actors are more personally active than others, but when we’re all on set 12+ hours a day they have better things to do than be on social media. People really need to put the devices down and get out into the world and cultivate real world relationships


DNA2020 t1_iya78ru wrote

I loved Marc Maron during the pandemic. He kept checking in on his listener’s mental health. I realized I was having a difficult time and addressed it with my family. Marc was a good friend. :)


SafteyMatch t1_iya8p3a wrote

I don’t really enjoy podcasts when it’s a bunch of buddies laughing about some stuff they did together. Comedian podcasts are the worst to me. I don’t really care about that night at the Laugh Factory you almost hung out with Dave Chappell.


SDStormtrooper t1_iya8tds wrote

Anyone else just listens to a few podcasts on the regular and discusses them with their friends? It doesn't necessarily have to be a lonely or sad activity as most in this thread are implying


crambeaux t1_iyablyu wrote

This is why I listen to podcasts. I’ve always been a radiohead and podcasts are just radio shows-a lot of the ones I listen to are from NPR (national public radio). You can skip the ads and often there aren’t any.


Cetun t1_iyac3aa wrote

Did Cum town already call themselves a friend simulator years ago?


DTFH_ t1_iyae5sx wrote

> completely neurotic society that makes you wary of your own neighbors

That's a big lie most people are not afraid of their neighbor, they are driven to see OTHERS through financial repression. This is about our financial game breaking under too many players exploiting known legal "glitches" leading to 'Us/Them' mentalities used to control 'us' from actually seeing the problem is the pool we're swimming in, not whose in the pool. There are very few OTHERs when everyone's basic needs can be met and financial stress isn't redlined.


DTFH_ t1_iyaegg2 wrote

> That's a lot of words to say "the disease is capitalism."

Because its not just Capitalism, this disease could happen in any economic or political system. The issue is people have figured out economic exploits leading to our system glitching and routinely collapsing of the economic game.


mediocreterran t1_iyaj57r wrote

The boys from The Last Podcast on the Left have helped me through some very lonely and low points.


Accujack t1_iyak3sl wrote

The are neither fully capitalist or communist, they're a unique economic experiment with special economic zones, a command economy, lots of poverty and lots of corruption, and major industries owned by the military.


Fimbulvetr2012 t1_iyak5jw wrote

Hey Riddle Riddle. Its fun and wholesome and fuckin silly as all hell. Listen to them every day, and it feels like being a fly on the wall to your best friends just cutting up


voidxleech t1_iyakyfs wrote

i listen to the triforce podcast almost every day on my dog walks and i gotta say, it’s incredibly comforting. i know that’s a weird word to use but it fits how i feel hah.


Sly8790 t1_iyaqbf2 wrote

Or you can just get some social connection instead?


Mtnskydancer t1_iyaqhb0 wrote


Podcasts are “radio” to me, that I can control somewhat. I don’t think I get an interaction buzz, just my normal oooh, knowledge buzz.

For those who see the interaction, can you explain it some, please?


microm3gas t1_iyb1mq9 wrote

I’ve been working and traveling from my for the past couple of months.

When not working I’ve been meeting and having conversations with people. It’s been kinda nice.


DanYHKim t1_iyb1tl2 wrote


I comment on Reddit for that


bbgun142 t1_iyb6ivi wrote

That just makes me feel really sad


PallandoOrome t1_iybbj9s wrote

I have listened to so many more podcasts since 2019, so that makes sense.


ovid10 t1_iybgyyk wrote

This is why I listen to so much Behind the Bastards. And I found out about that company that we all know and love that has that island that hunts children for sport! Fun times.


memetunis t1_iyblj05 wrote

This is exactly how I use podcasts. I need to clean the kitchen, for example, put on a podcast. To avoid getting hung up on choosing one just search top podcasts of 2022 or November and pick from the top five. Go from there.


acreagelife t1_iyborvc wrote

Makes sense why so many dumb people think they are smart


MichaelEMJAYARE t1_iybpul9 wrote

I have been wondering about podcasts affects on us. This seems like great news for me, being a janitor whos day is filled with Comedy Bang Bang and the likes, and doesnt have a lot of friends.


grosstonsils t1_iybz41p wrote

The McElroy brothers are not experts...


Icy_Garbage9503 t1_iybzc2u wrote

Not sure if you like DnD but Not Another DnD Podcast has honestly gotten me through a rough couple of years. The storytelling is incredible with a bunch of goofs and just all around fun. Give the first couple episodes a try. Even if you don't know anything about DnD, one of the players has never played before either so everything is simple and broken down to understand


SammieStones t1_iycr0s2 wrote

Been working from home for 5 years. Podcasts, gardening and feeding the birds keeps me sane


SammieStones t1_iycr1wc wrote

Been working from home for 5 years. Podcasts, gardening and feeding the birds keeps me sane


Rambocat1 t1_iycr7xg wrote

I‘m going to pick you up at 6pm and take you to a small party of a few hundred of my closest friends. You will be expected to give a speech of at least 20 minutes in length.


procom49 t1_iydd9m8 wrote

Listening to podcasts definitely makes me feel like I’m sitting and chatting with a couple of friends


Evelyn-in-the-woods t1_iydux9o wrote

Just want to say I used to genuinely believe that some people weren’t wired to have friendships and I was one of them. I ended up going to a lot of therapy and worked through a lot of self loathing and now making connections is sooo much easier than it was. Everyone deserves to and is capable of making friends as long as you are kind to yourself and you focus on meeting “your people”


Evelyn-in-the-woods t1_iydxt4q wrote

I’m sorry you are having a hard time! Even so, you do have value and you do deserve to be loved.

Being ND and LGBTQ, it took me a long time to realize that trying to force myself into the NT/straight crowds wasn’t going to work.

But the world is big and we all deserve peace! (And we all deserve some great podcast crews too)