I was curious about the validity of these claims, so I did some googling.
I found the Time article which appears to be the source of most of your claims. It has most of the same quotes and goes roughly in the same order as your article. https://time.com/5388681/audiobooks-reading-books/
Interesting to me is how willfully you left out the part that comprehension and retention is roughly the same for both formats.
Instead, you focused on the screen vs. book and the podcast vs. book. Obviously a podcast, which is usually informal and freewheeling, is going to be less efficient than reading a book, which has been edited and condensed by a dozen people. Screens also have a disadvantage, because they lack the spatial queues, like you mentioned.
However, audio has a HUGE advantage because we are originally an aural creature. We love spoken stories. The fact that you can have a story told to you while you chop carrots is nothing short of a miracle.
You actually can multitask doing automatic functions, like walking, driving, or folding laundry. Are you really going to make the claim that you can't have a deep conversation while walking? That's the best place to have ideas, according to thinkers like Danny Kahneman. Audiobooks are wonderful, because these times would otherwise be wasted.
Personally, I was curious because I like audiobooks and I hoped your claims were wrong. What I found relieved me. Turns out that the difference in retention, if any, is small.
Also, the claim that audiobooks are for people with short attention spans--huh? How is a 30-hour lecture good for a short attention span?
To those audiobook lovers who read this article and felt shitty: Listen if you enjoy, and know that it is pretty much no different than physical reading.
Especially if you don't tend to drift out much, which I don't. I pretty much never have to go back. My preferred method of learning is listening!
However, if you love physical books, enjoy those!
There is no reason to get all snobby about how we read, especially if you are willfully withholding information to make a bold point. Seems kinda shitty.
I don't mean to call you out, but I really think it's damaging to discourage people who enjoy listening to books. And to hide behind "defending culture" really comes off as disingenuous to me. Long before books were even around, the spoken word was passing down culture from generation to generation.
There is no evidence to suggest listening is "impeding your learning." In fact, we are in the midst of a learning revolution because of all the new ways to take in information. Why put the brakes on something wonderful like that?