In yesterday’s Insider, I briefly discussed Google Podcast’s efforts in automatically generating transcripts of episodes to produce metadata that helps listeners search for shows, and how that presumably fits into the search giant’s broader interests when it comes to podcasting:
Spotify and Pandora, in my view, are structurally more incentivized to increase the time spent by users on their respective platforms, in accordance with the business-advertising models that they employ respectively. Google, on the hand, wins by becoming the — if not a — go-to hub for finding the things and podcasts you want to find. Two connected impulses that are ultimately different at its core, and it’s worth keeping that in mind when assessing the future actions of these platforms.
But there appears to be a question that can be asked about what else Google may use the data for, and their potential right to do so. On Twitter, Charlie Harding, the co-host of Switched on Pop, raised the issue: