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Re: [podcasters] Re: Podcasting is "dead"?

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  • the Encaffeinated ONE
    ... Interesting... It s a shame that audio-podcasting didn t come a few years earlier, then, before radio became (generally) such a wasteland.. ... This echoes
    Message 1 of 23 , Feb 2, 2009
      On Mon, Feb 2, 2009 at 10:40 PM, RatbagMedia <ratbagradio@...> wrote:

      > --- In podcasters@yahoogroups.com, Dan Hughes <danhughes@...> wrote:
      > >
      > > I think there is a general feeling that podcasting is dead because it
      > > never became as popular as it should have.
      > >
      >
      >
      > Well the main complication is that podcasting re-invents radio and
      > suffers from the many handicaps that radio has had to deal with for so
      > many decades.
      >

      Interesting... It's a shame that audio-podcasting didn't come a few years
      earlier, then, before radio became (generally) such a wasteland..


      > (1)Video is treated much better on the web. The housing and


      This echoes a question I made months ago: what's the Youtube for
      audio-podcasting? Can it be? The general opinion seemed to be that there
      wouldn't be one, because audio is such a different medium, and the
      portability of audio trumped the social nature of a share listening space.
      Also, audio not being an inherently visual medium but the web definitely
      being one seems at odds.

      (2) While I also use YouTube (and can cross post to it via TubeMoghul)
      > the amount of traffic you'll get to your item on YouTUbe can leave the
      > podcasting sites way behind.


      I think one of the reasons for this is actually the structure of Youtube:
      you go to a central place to experience many different productions, carry a
      profile for your entire experience across all productions, and can
      share/communicate/rate all the things in one place.

      There are directories for audio podcasting, but they have not taken on to
      the same level.

      There might also be a problem with audio presentation lacking any chapter
      cues. I can skim through a video and have some idea where I'm skipping to by
      the frame of video that comes up. In audio, I will likely have to wait
      longer for a cue as to where it is. While there are chapters in the AAC
      format (I think that's the one), the process for making them always seems to
      be extraordinarily arcane and/or limited by platform or software
      availability.


      > (3) Video is a major dialogue media on the web when audio is not.
      > Despite a few initiatives such as on ODEO for a time -- it's video
      > rather than audio which people prefer to engage a discussion with.


      This I find strange, because the engagement is mostly textual, and that's
      just as easy for audio as it is for video. And audio is so much easier to
      feed back with, as long as you put mechanisms in place like a voicemail line
      or live call-in feature.


      > (4) Some of my podcasting was taken up by community radio but my video
      > output is in greater demand than I imagined possible.(it just goes to
      > show you how much poor quality video there is on the web).


      The sorry state of radio stations has lowered the expectations of people for
      what radio can be like, I suppose. I wonder if the omnipresent position of
      the CBC here in Canada is what gives me a very different perspective on the
      matter.. I should imagine that NPR listeners and BBC radio listeners might
      also be more willing to give audio podcasts a chance..


      > (5) Video is so much easier to edit and format than audio. It's the
      > graphic cues you get. I can edit up video footage in a twice compared


      That's the first time I have heard *anyone* suggest that! Most insist that
      video is dramatically harder than audio, because you have multiple streams
      of information which must be patched together as seamlessly as possible.

      Also, audio manipulation is far easier when one considers non-local
      contributors; I do Skype chats with people in 4 time zones: we could never
      do video.

      Finally, audio allows more easy manipulation for tricks such as multiple
      voices (or multiple characters with my own voice).

      (6)However, I don't think video makes a very useful podcasting option
      > -- ie: ran on a feed -- because of file size and customized
      > preferences. Thats' where audio rocks -- and the fact that you can
      > port it away from your computer so easily. The problem is that that is
      > the web's best kept secret -- and while I may listen to hours of
      > podcasts each week no one else I know does.They cannot see past video
      > if they see at all.


      I'm interested if people have suggestions about how we can reform the
      "image" of audio, how we can build a good community site like Youtube and
      also keep the portability.

      Devices like the iPod Touch and the iPhone give me hope that we can have a
      richer experience with audio and feedback. Imagine a podcast player
      application which has a "comment on this" button beside every "play" button.
      Press it, and voila! A feedback window (with both text window and audio
      recorder controls) pops up. You put in your comment, and the application
      delivers it to the feedback address given in the podcast episode itself.

      If someone could please plug that into iTunes and Juice, we'd capture a lot
      of the audience and start a revolution, I suspect... After all: that's
      exactly what RSS did, from what I understand, create a simple technology
      with an application, let it flow out..

      Oh, and create a nice, standard Wordpress plugin and centralized YouHere
      (HearHere? YouListen?) website where a podcast producer can put it all up in
      one place. Include community functions (commenting, rating, "you may also
      like X", recommendations, profiles, etc.).

      If I had time, I would have already built this. There are attempts at this,
      but they all seem very cumbersome, slow, misdirected energies for the most
      part.


      > So I'm shifting my focus a lot. And while I try to offer a mix of
      > media on site -- I am getting much more interest from video production
      > than audio.I also prefer to work in video because it is more
      > descriptive and you don;t have to lay down so much explanation.I can
      > also do video to DVD and present my work in real time gatherings. in a
      > way that audio doesn't suit.
      >
      > I have a portfolio in the way audio doens't allow.
      >
      > Essentially the cultural preference has shifted from auditory inputs
      > to visual ones and it is hard to buck the trend with the density of audio.


      The trend had switched from honest presentations to vacuous but slick ones,
      too, but that's changing..

      Until we all move to be chipped and deliver info to our brain, we will
      always hear, and we will always listen to one thing and do another. I don't
      believe audio is dead and gone, just abused and rusty..

      The other complication was that podcasting aped radio as it tried to
      > reproduce a web version of the AM/FM band. Aping radio when radio
      > could still be had only meant that radio too became podcastable -- as
      > is what has happened.


      I think this died away very quickly. Sure, there are still some things that
      are distinctly radio-like, but most things quickly have diverged away from
      that, and are diverging more and more. That's not say that they left them
      behind: radio has many years of hard-won lessons to teach, and ignoring the
      history and significance of that would probably be foolish..

      (I would be quick to point out that I don't think that the vast array of
      empty, robotized, copy-cat stations are worth emulating, but their
      predecessors are.)


      > So where do these media newbie others fit in? Where;'s the niche that
      > was sustainable? In fact podcasting fed that by trying to be very
      > regular and very episodic -- the terror of the RSS feed -- instead of
      > maybe slowing down and doing less often but quality products that
      > could live on the wed as a ongoing archive.


      I think one of the problems I've had is there is plenty of good stuff out
      there, and since I subscribe to it all (it feels like), I get behind on all
      the conversations. And anyone who wasn't there from the beginning is left
      out or has to run fast to catch up. It's a very good point that we might
      want to reconsider the linear, building-up nature of the medium of
      podcasting and consider more drop-in, drop-out or ambient conversation
      styles, or consider something to be taken at a time wholly different from
      when it was produced.

      That said, some audio is bound to be continual, some to be an ongoing
      barometer of current events or a measure of progress so far in some
      discussion.



      > Podcasting's complication was one of poor quality...that dragged the
      > medium down in popularity. There's heaps of crap video too on the web,
      > but it is much easier to sift through that.


      What makes it easier to sift through? Why can those tools not be applied to
      audio? I think the medium has grown in use to the point where there are
      almost always good quality programs in many niches, so much so that the
      lesser quality programs fade away. I don't think that it is easier to sift
      through the loads of crap video, I think that there are better tools to
      aggregate the sifting and make the better quality programs rise to the top.

      That's what video teaches you -- the quest for quality and substance
      > --when video on the web is so often neither, and audio podcasting on
      > the web is still an unknown in that regard.


      It is difficult to compare the medium of web video with the medium of
      podcasting (audio or video). They are *not* the same, I'd suggest, with web
      video largely consisting of a mountain of individual videos, largely
      disconnected from each other, and podcasts consisting of a series of related
      items. When you consume web video, you are looking for a one-off experience.
      When you consume a podcast, you are subscribing into a continuing, ongoing,
      periodic experience. It is a bigger committment to subscribe to a podcast,
      and that committment must be described and vetted with adequate description,
      features, commentary, social standing, etc..

      So the format can be a tyranny. This desire to replicate the "program
      > ' entity in time, place and subject.
      >
      > It's the radio trap.


      "The medium is the message," calls the ghost of McLuhan. But the medium is
      still malleable, and before Youtube the web video medium was pretty much
      crap.


      > I think the way to proceed is to mix media and draw in the best
      > options from video, audio and text. And always always look to your
      > content. I think content rules and, as Marshal McLuhan argued, can
      > always determine your medium -- and vice versa.


      Well, that interpretation is a little different from the ones I've heard;
      from what I understand, he was really suggesting that an awareness of the
      limitations and opportunities a medium can offer -- how it speaks to the
      consumer -- is vital to really understanding what you can say, and how it
      gets received. The content doesn't dictate the medium, but rather it is
      shaped by it. The podcast episode doesn't shape the podcasting medium, but
      is itself shaped by the periodic, linear, subscription, continuing, two-way,
      conversational, direct, interactive nature of the system.

      Podcasting is not radio; web video is not TV. They learn things from them,
      but go beyond them. There are limitations, but these are not hindrances,
      merely signals that we might change the medium if necessary, or embrace them
      and push them as benefits..

      This has been a very stimulating discussion! I hope that others will chime
      in with other suggestions of what we, the producers of podcasts (and also,
      in most cases, some of the consumers as well) can do to expand or understand
      our medium..

      encaf1/MK

      [image: Encaffeinated!] <http://encaffeinated.ca> *the Encaffeinated ONE
      * *"It Is by beans alone that I set my mind in motion."*
      Podcaster. Announcer. Audio Actor. Writer. Programmer. *Geek.*
      Host of The WEIRD Show <http://theweirdshow.com> and Wandering Out
      Loud<http://encaffeinated.ca>
      Crew of The 9th Heroescast <http://www.heroescast.com> and Buffy Between The
      Lines <http://buffybetweenthelines.com>


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • tom_a_sparks
      ... I dont want to be charged a dollar a second/Kilobyte to access the internet via my 3G internet-enabled device (I dont have one anyway) ... i understand
      Message 2 of 23 , Feb 2, 2009
        --- In podcasters@yahoogroups.com, Matthew Wayne Selznick
        <mwselznick@...> wrote:
        >
        > On Mon, Feb 2, 2009 at 4:05 PM, tom_a_sparks <tom_a_sparks@...> wrote:
        > > but I think that a lot of the so-called podcasters started doing
        > > videoblogs, but they f*cked up and started using youtube, Not a
        > > downloadalbe format like mp4/wmv etc
        >
        > The point of any media is to get it into the eyes / ears of the
        > audience. If YouTube is the best way to do that (user familiarity,
        > access on an increasing number of Internet-enabled devices) then so be
        > it. Why download something when you can stream it on your
        > Internet-enabled portable device?

        I dont want to be charged a dollar a second/Kilobyte to access the
        internet via my 3G internet-enabled device (I dont have one anyway)
        >
        > Video podcasters aren't fucking up when they use YouTube. They're
        > putting their content in the largest distribution stream available.

        i understand that view, but the limitions of youtube is what turn me
        off youtube see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_YouTube,
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blocking_of_YouTube and also the youtube
        corporation is making money of your video submitions

        > Now, I think it's smart to be on YouTube *and* offer a downloadable
        > option, as with my Teen Poetry podcast... but to say podcasters are
        > "doing it wrong" by using YouTube is as misguided as any right-wrong
        > "rules" when it comes to this medium.


        Wasn't the idea of podcasting to officer a downloadble file to be
        placed on your non-internet-enabled media player?
      • Matthew Wayne Selznick
        ... Google makes money off of your content in exchange for infinite bandwidth, near-perfect uptime, and infinite storage. Plus, if I tell someone, My video s
        Message 3 of 23 , Feb 2, 2009
          On Mon, Feb 2, 2009 at 8:56 PM, tom_a_sparks <tom_a_sparks@...> wrote:
          > i understand that view, but the limitions of youtube is what turn me
          > off youtube see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_YouTube,
          > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blocking_of_YouTube and also the youtube
          > corporation is making money of your video submitions

          Google makes money off of your content in exchange for infinite
          bandwidth, near-perfect uptime, and infinite storage. Plus, if I tell
          someone, "My video's on YouTube," they know exactly what I mean.
          Can't count on that if I say, "Have you seen my podcast?"

          There are plenty of ways smart people make money off their videos.
          Also, I believe YouTube offers ad service through AdSense to folks who
          upload videos, so you could even earn money directly.

          > Wasn't the idea of podcasting to officer a downloadble file to be
          > placed on your non-internet-enabled media player?

          No. The idea of podcasting was to deliver files (audio, video, or
          anything else) via RSS. You still need the Internet to get the
          content at some point.

          Has anyone noticed that YouTube is starting to offer downloadable video..?

          --
          Matthew Wayne Selznick
          Author, Podcaster, Social Media Authority
          ************************************
          "Reggie vs. Kaiju Storm Chimera Wolf"
          Signed and numbered limited edition chapbook
          http://www.mattselznick.com

          "Brave Men Run -- A Novel of the Sovereign Era"
          Paperback, Ebook, iPhone, Kindle, MP3 CD, Free Podcast
          http://www.bravemenrun.com
        • joshuamcnichols
          ... This may be true. But I contend that a smaller number of people prefer audio to video because it is a more intimate medium. I know video can portray
          Message 4 of 23 , Feb 3, 2009
            >
            > (3) Video is a major dialogue media on the web when audio is not.
            > Despite a few initiatives such as on ODEO for a time -- it's video
            > rather than audio which people prefer to engage a discussion with.
            >

            This may be true. But I contend that a smaller number of people
            prefer audio to video because it is a more intimate medium. I know
            video can portray intimate things. But audio has a special way of
            getting directly into your head. I believe it's because audio can be
            akin to the human voice, whereas video has all these layers between
            you and the content - a screen, a smaller scale, and the distractions
            in the room. Furthermore, I appreciate that audio podcasts allow me
            to do other things while I'm listening. Garden, exercise, wash
            dishes, rock my baby to sleep.

            I work in radio rather than television because I felt the intimacy of
            audio, and felt alienated by television. If video is inherently
            BETTER than audio, then why doesn't PBS make NPR obsolete? I know NPR
            is suffering financially, but it's doing way better than PBS.

            Audio is definitely a niche in a world dominated by video. But it's a
            time-tested niche with real strengths.

            That said, having photos or other web features to draw people into the
            audio-only content is critical in a world where web pages are the
            portals to audio work. Then once people tune in, the audio can do its
            work.

            My favorite model for audio content is PRX - the public radio
            exchange. It requires registration, but if they eliminated that and
            enhanced the ability to embed, they'd have something very much like
            you-tube.
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