Aussie Muso & Software Engineer Creates Triple J Watchdog For 'Transparent Insight' Into Radio

26 June 2024 | 12:26 pm | Mary Varvaris

The website analyses triple j by artist and genre. Data has been collected since 31 March 2024.

triple j's One Night Stand

triple j's One Night Stand (Supplied)

Earlier this month, Harrison Khannah, a Sydney-based software engineer, musician, and passionate advocate for media transparency, launched a new website called Triple J Watchdog.

Featuring statistics about the music that plays on the national broadcaster, the website made The Conversation today in a new piece about triple j’s propensity for playing mainstream popular music.

Khannah’s website analyses triple j by artist and genre, with genres defined by Spotify classifications. Data has been collected since 31 March 2024.

The website contains eight categories – with accompanying graphs for half of them – and they are:

  • Top 10 Countries of Origin of Artists and Bands

  • Pronoun spread of artists played

  • Top tracks

  • Top 15 Artists

  • Average popularity of an artist played on triple j

  • Average follower count (an artist’s follower count on Spotify)

  • Top 10 Genres

  • Most Played Two Genres per Hour

According to Khannah’s analysis, which is built using an openly available Application Programming Interface (API) from the ABC and additional tools like Spotify and Make Music Equal, the top four artists on triple j are international: WILLOW, girl in red, Griff and Billie Eilish.

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

At #5 is Hockey Dad, followed by Royel Otis. Other Australian artists who have made the Top 15 Artists lists are Angus & Julia Stone (#8), The Rions (#10), and DICE (#15).

If you regularly listen to triple j, the top genres aren’t surprising, covering pop, Australian indie, Australian surf rock, Australian indie rock, modern rock, rap, and more. Australian indie also dominated the Most Played Two Genres per Hour category, with metalcore making an appearance from the 9 pm mark.

Khannah is devoted to transparency in media, so they created Triple J Watchdog “as a means to have transparent insight into what our government station is playing and, more importantly, have this information always in the hand of the consumer,” they tell The Music.

Triple J Watchdog will remain free to access and completely transparent, with Khannah hoping to achieve “nothing more than” providing data accessible to the public “about what our national tastemakers are playing, with the hopes that it will become an even representation of the Australian music landscape.”

Khannah adds, “I am using an openly available API from the ABC to gather information about triple j, alongside datasets like the Spotify API and Make Music Equal to better enrich the data.

“With my experience in web development and data analysis, I aim to provide valuable insights and ensure that the public has easy access to the information they need.”

You can check out Triple J Watchdog here.

And the most popular song on triple j this week is…