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Spotify Acquires The Ringer

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Feb 5, 2020.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    Spotify has acquired The Ringer.

    Spotify has purchased The Ringer, Bill Simmons’ sports and culture site, the companies announced today (February 5). The move follows the streaming service’s expansion into podcasts. (The Ringer has 30 podcasts.) The Ringer, which was previously in partnership with Vox Media, also has a video network, film production division, and book imprint, as The New York Times notes.

    Simmons, the former ESPN commentator who founded The Ringer in 2016, said in a statement: “Spotify has the unique ability to truly supercharge both content and creator talent across genres. We spent the last few years building a world-class sports and pop culture multimedia digital company and believe Spotify can take us to another level. We couldn’t be more excited to unlock Spotify’s power of scale and discovery, introduce The Ringer to a new global audience, and build the world’s flagship sports audio network.”

    I know I’m probably not like most casual podcast listeners, but the moment any of this content goes behind any kind of Spotify exclusive wall, I’m out on the shows. Neil Cybart’s take on why Spotify spent the money here feels right to me. The economics of streaming music isn’t great and they’re betting on sports radio/talk and podcasts.

  2. slickdtc

    Regular Supporter

    Longtime Grantland reader and when that shut down and The Ringer rose from its ashes a year or two later, it’s been a regular, daily stop for my sports fix. While they have their share of goofy content, there’s a lot of good analytical deep dives in to the numbers behind the numbers (I love Robert Mays writing). I’ve never been in to Barstool, BleacherReport, Deadspin and the like because The Ringer fulfilled what I was looking for (without a paywall like The Athletic).

    I’m a Spotify subscriber so this won’t affect me if anything goes behind their subscription service. But I don’t even do podcasts anyway. Shame if others miss out on that content though.
  3. I'm glad that Spotify hasn't acquired any of my favorite podcasts so far. But I'm not too sure if there's any show Spotify could take that would make me stop using Overcast.
    sean_rugy likes this.
  4. kielhauck @kielhauck

    I could see them making eventually making some Spotify-exclusive shows or episodes, but it's also possible that they'll do what they did with Dissect where episodes are available on Spotify a day earlier than anywhere else.

    At any rate, it's wild how much ground Spotify has gained in the podcast market over the past few years.
  5. Beholdtheriver


    Good job by you, Bill.

    Personally, I consume a much high percentage of their podcasts than their articles at this point. My biggest hope is that this doesn’t interrupt Binge Mode: Lord of the Rings (my hope and educated guess for what might be next).

    also, @Jason Tate to my knowledge, Spotify has not made any Gimlet content exclusive to their platform, so I imagine we will all be able to continue listening to our favorite pods on our podcast app of choice (Overcast for me).
  6. Full Effect Ed

    ...In F*cking Full Effect Prestigious

    They already have a Spotify exclusive podcast called “The Hottest Take” but that’s been ongoing since last Summer
  7. artbynickferran

    My biggest gripe here is that Spotify's desktop UI for Podcast listening is almost unusable – I assume I'm not the only one who uses desktop just as much, if not more than mobile. With their heavy focus on podcast content, it's crazy to me that they haven't addressed the issues it has yet.
  8. KyleK

    Let's get these people moving faster! Supporter

    I consume a silly amount of Ringer content, just as I did Grantland before that. Was pretty shocked to see this news, even though it feels like a natural step from recent forays into more exclusive podcast content. I am a Spotify subscriber, so there's no real risk for me, but from a sheer convenience standpoint hope it doesn't get walled off, as I use Podcast Addict for my mobile app (discontinuing the spotify widget led to me rolling back its app - and UI is an ongoing issue with them).
    Steeeve Perry likes this.
  9. Steeeve Perry


    Yeah I have Spotify so I'll still catch the pods. I just hope they stick to their word and let the rest of the site run as it has been, rather than pivoting away from all the other things The Ringer does well to focus more/solely on podcasts.
    Also glad no more Ringer pods will be exclusive to Luminary now.
  10. simonthebutler


    Last podcast network got bought up by Spotify and are going Spotify exclusive from next week, they have been quite transparent about their reasons for taking the Spotify dollar but seem to have upset a lot of fans. They have said that the shows will still be available on Spotify free but will have about 15 minutes of adverts per episode, I assume premium will be as free but no idea.
  11. bestofmoss


  12. omgrawr

    That loneliness is not a function of solitude.

    The Spotify app sucks for listening to podcasts. I often pop in and out of podcasts and Spotify never saves my spot, so I have no idea where to pick back up from. I’m not sure if that’s a feature it’s supposed to have that doesn’t work, or isn’t even feature at all right now.