National Podcast Day
Today is National Podcast Day! Podcasting is the new kid on the block in the media space. But it’s growing by leaps and bounds and is well on its way to taking its place alongside other media channels like newspapers, magazines, TV, and radio.
Unlike those other types of media, podcasting is egalitarian and democratic. Anyone can start a podcast. No permission or license from the government is needed to start a podcast. This means you’ll hear voices and points of view that you can’t get in other media.
Unlike more traditional media, it’s very inexpensive to start a podcast. No expensive printing presses are required. Virtually no distribution costs are involved. This means volunteer run and non profit organizations can afford to publish to the world to support their mission. Money can’t be used to control, thwart, or distort the message coming from these organizations. You get to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth!
And it also means that artists can share their work with the world. There are video podcasts for artists that work visually, and there are audio podcasts for musicians.
And finally, it’s a new avenue for individuals like you to build a community around their common interests, hobbies, causes. If you can think of a topic, there’s probably a podcast about it!
What podcasts do you listen to?
Comment at the bottom of this post and share with the world your favorite podcasts so you can spread the love and support the podcast producers you enjoy.
Some of my favorites:
- The Americana Music Show: This is the podcast I host and produce that features “hand picked, road-tested american music and interviews with your next favorite bands.”
- Thanks For Giving A Damn: Another music interview podcast that I enjoy, hosted by a very cool songwriter, Otis Gibbs.
- Answer Me This!: A humorous Q&A podcast from Britain.
- The SF Signal: A podcast for science fiction fans.
- The Moth: A story telling podcast.
- Freakonomics Radio: A podcast that explores how economics influences every aspect of our lives.
How do I listen to a podcast?
Many podcasts have a web site that let’s you listen online by clicking a play button on the episode’s page at the web site. But most people listen to podcasts either through an application on their computer or an app on their phone.
For iOS devices, visit “Best podcast apps for iPhone and iPad.”
Where can I find podcasts?
First of all, go to your favorite search engine. Type in a few words about the subject you are interested in and add the word ‘podcast’ at the end of the list. Run the search. I bet you will be amazed at how many podcasts there are about your topic.
Some of the best directories of podcasts are:
- iTunes – This is by far the biggest podcast directory, but you have to have iTunes or their podcasts app installed to search it. This page will help you get started with the iTunes podcasts directory.
- Stitcher – After iTunes, Stitcher is probably the next biggest directory and it’s by far the most accessible way to listen to podcasts. You can listen to their podcasts online and they have apps available of bunches of different platforms, including Android and they are quickly rolling out deals to make Stitcher available in cars. You can browse and search their directory of shows at their web site.
- Miro – Miro is an open source and non-profit directory of podcasts and online music. Visit their web site to search and explore their directory.
Can I start a podcast?
You bet. It takes a little bit of money, but not that much. But it mostly takes your passion and time to produce a podcast. There are lots of online guides for how to get started creating a podcast, but the one I recommend is Dave Jackson’s School of Podcasting. He has plenty of free online resources (including the School of Podcasting podcast!). He also has a Quick Start program that can get your podcasting platform up and running for as little as $7. I have not used the that service personally, but as a long time listener of his podcast, I can say with confidence that he won’t steer you wrong.