Quizzicle host Lindsay Webb said the five-minute episodes were exactly what parents needed while stuck at home with their children.
“It’s a great way to break up the day and give you a few minutes of peace and quiet,” he said. “There’s jokes the kids will laugh at. There were some jokes only the parents will understand. I don’t want to call them dad jokes, because that’s derogatory, but they are. They’re dad jokes.”
Nova has already started recording an adult version of the podcast where listeners can compare their general knowledge skills against celebrities such as former Bachelor star Matty J and ex-rugby league player Wally Lewis.
Nova’s podcast operations manager Mark Hales said the adult version would be available in a few weeks’ time.
“People want an escape,” he said. “We believe it’ll lighten people’s lives a bit.”
The ABC’s head of podcasting, Kellie Riordan, said the public broadcaster was also releasing audio to help people navigate unprecedented business shut-downs and stay-at-home orders. The ABC recently released Mindfully: Corona Calm – a selection of some of Australia’s best meditation podcasts with introductions by ABC News Breakfast host Lisa Millar.
“I hope it will give consumers a really useful way of bringing mindfulness into their life and into their loungeroom,” Ms Riordan said. “I also hope people will use it to create boundaries between their work day and their home life. Now that people are working from home, it’s all blurring into one.”
Audible, an audio entertainment company owned by internet giant Amazon, is currently fast-tracking two of its original Australian podcasts. Both are multi-cast audio dramas.
While some podcasts are helping listeners momentarily escape the global health crisis, others are tackling self-isolation head on. The Age and Sydney Morning Herald’s podcast Please Explain has shifted to five episodes per week to help listeners make sense of the latest COVID-19 news.
Amelia Phillips, the host of SCA’s Healthy Her podcast, will soon release a special series on coronavirus.
Ms Phillips said one episode will focus on how parents can talk to their children about the pandemic, while others will tackle homeschooling and how to stay motivated.
“Most of my audience are working mums and if they’re not working they’ve got side hustles,” she said. “We’ve got a situation now where we’ve got all the kids at home and still have work demands. And we’ve got our partners home as well.
“So I went to my producers and said, ‘Mums need help and support with this.’ It’s so important that podcasts are relevant to the listener.”
Broede Carmody is a culture reporter at The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald