Have you ever dreamed of having your own radio show? Are you a recording artist hoping to have your songs heard by the masses? Decades ago, you would have needed a lot of connections — or a fortune — to get heard.
But now, thanks to the Internet and its instantaneous connection to millions of people, your dreams can become reality. Just as blogging has enabled almost anyone with a computer to become a bona fide reporter, podcasting allows virtually anyone with a computer to become a radio disc jockey, talk show host or recording artist.
Although podcasting first found popularity within the techie set, it has since caught on with the general public. Log on to one of several podcast sites on the Web, and you can download content ranging from music to philosophy to sports. Podcasting combines the freedom of blogging with digital audio technology to create an almost endless supply of content. Some say this new technology is democratizing the once corporate-run world of radio.
A podcast, is an episodic series of digital audio which a user can download and listen to. It is often available for subscription, so that new episodes are automatically downloaded via web syndication to the user’s own local computer, mobile application, or portable media player. It is very similar to, and may overlap with, Internet radio, though perhaps distinct in revolving around topics personalized exactly to listener preferences, plus podcasts are often able be streamed or downloaded on demand.
The word was originally suggested by Ben Hammersley as a portmanteau of “iPod” (a brand of media player) and “broadcast”.
Some have labeled podcasting as a converged medium bringing together audio, the web, and portable media players, as well as a disruptive technology that has caused some people in the radio business to reconsider established practices and preconceptions about audiences, consumption, production, and distribution.
Podcast creators can monetize their podcasts by allowing companies to purchase ad time, as well as via sites such as Patreon, which provides special extras and content to listeners for a fee. Podcasting is very much a horizontal media form – producers are consumers, consumers may become producers, and both can engage in conversations with each other.
Some experts say podcasting still has a long way to go before it catches on with the masses, but its growing popularity is undeniable. It’s possible that podcasting will eventually become as popular as text blogging, which grew from a few thousand blogs in the late ’90s to more than 7 million today. Some podcasts are already providing thousand of downloads a day, and they’re not just entertaining their listeners — they’re also doing business.
We create a number of Podcast shows including the ONLY Pidgin show dedicated to Nigerian Arsenal fans, Up Gunners Podcast.
We also facilitate Podcast Production Classes at the Broadcast Radio Masterclass.