14 Ways Radio Is Getting Podcasts Wrong

Some general thoughts on the current state of podcasts as created by terrestrial radio stations courtesy consultant Mark Ramsey:

One of radio’s great opportunities is to get our communal heads and hands around the form and manner in which we post audio online.  Yes, I’m talking about the dreaded podcasts, people!

If you’re a radio broadcaster then chances are you have a section of your website devoted to show podcasts (assuming you have a show worthy enough to warrant on-demand listening).

Some stations refer to that page as an audio “archive.”  I refer to it as an audio dungeon.  Because only someone held captive against their will would possibly want to spend much time or effort there.

Here are just a few of the problems associated with many radio station podcasts.  Solve these if you have an eye (or ear) to the future:

  1. They are too long.  Okay, long podcasts are fine, but excerpt the bite-sized chunks for me, too.
  2. You don’t know what’s on them.  The tagging is either poor or, more likely, nonexistent.
  3. They’re locked away in “archives.”  In a search-friendly world, everything’s an archive.
  4. They are anti-social.  You can’t generally share the audio – only (if you’re lucky) the page the audio lives on.
  5. It takes a thousand words to make one picture.  Podcast tools should be built to enable images to be attached to the audio.  That way, users could scan the images as a shorthand to what’s on the audio.  Consider the fact that YouTube fans commonly upload audio content to YouTube and build a slide show around it.  Is this a poor way to use YouTube?  Or a better way to display audio?

Read the rest here.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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