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the Big Blog Company | Podcasting - coming to blogosphere near you…
“Who yer callin' a sparrow, you schmuck?!”
The bird on the back.
November 03 2004
Podcasting - coming to blogosphere near you…
Adriana Cronin-Lukas • Blogs & Blogging • Trends 
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Amy Gahran has a good round up on her blog about podcasting - What Is Podcasting and Why Should You Care?

In a nutshell, podcasting is simply online audio content that’s delivered via webfeed. (Background: What’s a webfeed?) Think of it as radio on demand. However, it gives you far more options in terms of content and program style than radio. While the field of radio has generally settled into few established types of programs, podcasting reflects more of the variety that is available on CDs.

Plus, podcasting is like TiVo for radio. That is, you can download whatever programming you want and listen to it whenever and wherever you want. You also generally have full access to the audio archives for the programs you like. This removes time, use, and content restraints.

Yesterday I listened to an interview by Dave Winer, which made it think again the issue of audioblogging and podcasting. Initially, I was not exactly sceptical, more like neutral on the issue of audio blogging. There did not seem much point although, yes, it is cool that a blogger could post sound as well as text. Great, provided his voice did not let the content down and all that. But there is a big difference between audio blogging and podcasting, in my opinion, not in the technology but in their different direction, embodied in their names.

Audio blogging is blogging in sound, the only difference seems to be the format, not the approach.  The spoken post is trying to achieve pretty much the same as a written post. Podcasting on the other hand, shifts the emphasis to more broadcasting style, i.e. the format influences the content and there is a distinct reason why something is podcasted rather than text blogged. For example, I can interview someone and rather than posting a transcript I can relay the entire experience. That’s what broadcasting does.

However, blogs do have an important role to play. There were the infrustructure for podcasting to take off much faster than blogging itself did. Blogs have done the work, they have created the ‘last mile’ for other formats and tools to spread. (Indeed, that is why we keep banging on about the network effect blogs enable when it comes to diffusion of information.) By the way, all this and more is discussed in the aforementioned interview. My favourite bit is the one about technology that users understand better than geek usually takes off big. Sounds about right…

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