Former NOVA exec slams ‘trolling’ on podcast charts

Former Editor & Content Director

Jay Walkerden, formerly the head of NOVA Entertainment’s podcast operation, has criticised what he sees as trolling on Apple’s podcast platform.

Walkerden’s Podshape operation now houses podcasts including What Happens After, fronted by controversial Married At First Sight contestant and former radio host Bryce Ruthven and his on-screen partner Melissa Rawson.

The decision by Walkerden to give the duo a platform beyond their television appearance was met with criticism, including in the Radio Today comment thread.

“Yea, listen, that’s probably one of my pet peeves in podcasting, and less so on RT [Radio Today] than it is on Apple – but one of the things that I really don’t like is that you can troll someone on Apple Podcasts, and nobody knows who you are and it’s totally anonymous and you can change your name and call yourself ‘triple j’ or whatever you want, or call yourself someone else, and you can give it a one-star and give it a rating,” he said in a chat with Radio Today.

“So I think that for me, it’s an annoyance.”

Despite his frustrations with people who may not have even listened to the podcast giving it a poor review, Walkerden did concede that the engagement is actually helping the podcast’s progression.

“But what [the trolls] don’t realise is when they’re doing that, they’re actually pushing it up the charts. If you like and comment, or even if you hate something and give it a one-star and you write a comment you’re pushing it up the Apple charts because it’s engagement,” he said.

“It actually drives it up because it’s just activity. So it’s like ‘Oh, okay, thank you’.”

Walkerden also said that even without the trolling, there is an audience for What Happens After.

“Why the hell did I go after them to have them on? Because they have a story to tell. It’s their story. And they did that. You don’t have to listen to it, that’s cool. But they wanted to tell their story, so we gave them that platform,” he said.

“But there’s an audience for it. And the audience that is listening to it, loves it, because they keep coming back for every episode.”

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24 May 2021 - 4:25 pm

Well said Jay. Most outlets turn them off for good legal reasons.

Curious George
24 May 2021 - 5:37 pm

Hey Jay,

Since I know you’re reading this champ, you’ll be able to answer:

Why are you listed as “Founder” but Katie is only listed as “Co-founder”?

Aren’t you both co-founders? Or are you insecure being equal to a woman?

24 May 2021 - 6:06 pm

Brice is a goose, the industry has zero interest in employing him and Jay has the irrits because he can’t monazite a yawn fest that has such high neg.

Wasn’t the money spinner the ambulance chaser was hoping.

Appears story checks out!

Mike E
24 May 2021 - 6:41 pm

Is this the same guy who was complaining about indi postcasts complaining about not being on his so called podcast charts?

24 May 2021 - 7:34 pm

When you sign one of the most hated guys in Australia what do you actually expect.. He wasn’t the greatest presenter when he had a job either so I don know how MAFS gives you magical talent upgrades…

25 May 2021 - 8:33 am

Clumsy of him. He was probably not aware of the saying that there’s no such thing as bad publicity, although even that has its exceptions.

25 May 2021 - 12:50 pm

Get over it Jay not one of your better hires.
Bryce who really ……

Old Bean
25 May 2021 - 5:15 pm

Hey Curious, I don’t know but a quick google showed me that he set up a company while she was still at Nova and then when she left she joined it. He is also a programmer and talent manager, and a good one.. so don’t throw mud that doesn’t stick bloke


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