what is a podcast?

community tower2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before diving into a lengthy explanation of what a podcast is, let’s look at the word “podcast” itself. First mentioned by Ben Hammersley in a 2004 Guardian newspaper article in which he rattled off possible names for this booming new medium, the “pod” of podcast is borrowed from Apple’s “iPod” digital media player; and the “cast” portion of podcast is taken from Radio’s “broadcast” term. As a mater of clarity, just because it’s named after Apple’s iPod, does not necessarily mean that you have to own or use an iPod — or any portable digital media player for that matter — to enjoy a podcast.

what is podcast4

Okay, with that out of the way, back to the original question: “What’s a podcast?”

A “podcast” is sort of difficult to explain because there really isn’t anything else like it — but rather, many things that are kind of like it.

A good starting point, is to think of a podcast as “Internet Radio On-Demand.” It’s similar in that you can usually listen to it on your computer — but it’s more than that. [However, and not to confuse the issue, podcasting isn’t confined to just audio but can be video as well].

It has well over 100,000 content specific “channels,” which are sure to suit just about anyone’s interests, and is available on the Internet. So, in a sense, it’s kind of like a Library.

With the amount of content that podcasting provides, regular Broadcast Radio, or “Terrestrial Radio” — as they call it — simply can never compete. The AM and FM radio band only podcast definition2has so many channels. Consequently, radio stations “Broadcast” their content — meaning that they attempt to appeal to as broad of an audience as possible. Because, afterall, this is what advertisers are looking for. But podcasting, by contrast, is not necessarily hamstrung to advertising revenue like its broadcasting cousin. With its specific and specialized content, it is able to “narrowcast” to only those who choose to listen. So while a particular podcast’s audience may be considerably smaller than the audience of a broadcast, one could argue that the podcast’s audience is a much more targeted and interested in the content being delivered. So, in a way, Satellite Radio, with its ability to provide more channels than Broadcast Radio, takes a step towards podcasting — but still does not come close.

Podcasts are “On Demand” and can be listened to on your schedule — not when a Radio Station decides to air it. So, it’s kind of like TiVo.

Each podcast has a website it calls “home” (like ours at www.residearchitecture.com/podcast ) where show episodes can be listened to or downloaded for future listening. With downloaded media, you can either listen to it on your computer or take it with you by transferring it to an iPod or any other portable digital media player. So, in this way, it’s kind of like a small paperback book.

click on the RSS button to subcribe to our podcast!
click on the RSS button to subcribe to our podcast!

The RSS icon allows you to subscribe to a podcast. Click on it to subscribe to ours!

But what truly makes a podcast unique, and what gives a podcast its “casting” ability, is how it is able immediately deliver itself to multiple podcast directory websites (such as iTunes, Podcast Alley, and Podcast Pickle) and podcatcher applications (like iTunes, Juice, and Zune) through a process of syndication known as RSS (Real Simple Syndication). Listeners can easily “subscribe” to podcasts (most are free) by clicking on its RSS icon or subscription button (ours is located in the upper left hand column). The listener is then walked through how to add that podcast’s syndication “feed” to a podcatching application of their choosing — or even good old-fashioned email. So, when a podcaster releases a new episode, subscribers are automatically notified without having to constantly check back with the podcast’s website to see if a new show has been produced. And, with the podcatching software, episodes of their favorite podcasts can be automatically downloaded and, if they choose, transferred to their portable listening device — all without having to lift a finger. So, in this way, podcasts are like magazine subscriptions.

Podcasts can be produced by just about anyone wanting to share and communicate with the world. They are not exclusive to Big Name Media. So, you could also say that podcasts are like Blogs.

Because podcast websites usually have ways for listeners to leave comments about each episode, and literally enter into a discussion with other listeners, podcasts are like a community of individuals sharing a common interest. And with an estimated 47 million podcast listeners out there in 2010, that’s a pretty hefty community.

Kind of cool if you ask me.

Still confused? The folks over at Common Craft have put together a nifty little 3 minute video that put’s it all in plain English. Perhaps that why they’ve entitled it “Podcasting in Plain English.” I encourage you to give it a view. It’s informative, easy to understand, and entertaining all at the same time.

Addendum:

To add to the comprehensiveness of our podcast explanation above, some might be interested to know that while the “pod” in podcast originally spawned from Apple’s iPod digital media player, a “backcronym” (an acronym developed after the fact) was developed with the “pod” of podcast alternatively standing for Personal On Demand or Programing On Demand.

many thanks: the above “what is a podcast” page was written and provided  by my podcasting friend,  Dr. Thomas Lamar of spinalcolumnradio.com. check out his great podcast! www.spinalcolumnradio.com. (i purchased the images at istockphoto.com).

839 Replies to “what is a podcast?”

  1. I really wanted to post a small comment in order to thank you for some of the great tips and hints you are posting at this website. My time consuming internet lookup has at the end been honored with reasonable tips to go over with my best friends. I would claim that many of us readers are extremely fortunate to be in a very good site with many brilliant individuals with interesting things. I feel really fortunate to have come across your entire website page and look forward to so many more excellent moments reading here. Thanks again for all the details.

  2. I in addition to my pals happened to be studying the best solutions from your site while suddenly I got a horrible suspicion I never thanked the web blog owner for those secrets. Most of the young men became totally excited to see all of them and have in effect seriously been making the most of them. Appreciate your actually being really helpful and then for settling on these kinds of incredibly good issues most people are really desirous to learn about. Our own sincere apologies for not expressing gratitude to sooner.

  3. Thanks for posting this awesome article. I’m a long time reader but I’ve never been compelled to leave a comment. I subscribed to your blog and shared this on my Facebook. Thanks again for a great article!

  4. ?fter ? initially left a comment I apper t?? have clicked t?e -Notify m? wh?n ne? comments
    ar? add?d- checkbox annd f?om now on whene?e? a comment is added I recieve four emails with th? exact
    s?me comment. ?here ha? to be a me?ns you can remove mme
    from th?t service? T?anks!

  5. I must show some thanks to this writer just for bailing me out of such a crisis. Just after searching through the internet and obtaining principles which are not powerful, I thought my entire life was over. Existing without the presence of solutions to the difficulties you’ve fixed through your posting is a serious case, and the ones that might have badly affected my career if I hadn’t encountered your blog. Your primary ability and kindness in playing with all things was priceless. I’m not sure what I would’ve done if I hadn’t come across such a thing like this. I can also at this point look ahead to my future. Thanks for your time so much for your skilled and result oriented help. I won’t think twice to endorse your web page to any individual who would like recommendations about this area.

  6. Outstanding post b?t I was ?anting to kno? ?f y?u ?ould write a littte more on this topic?
    ?’d be very thankfull if y?u ?ould elaborate ? l?ttle bit f?rther.
    Bless ?ou!

  7. A lot of thanks for each of your efforts on this web site. My daughter enjoys going through research and it’s really easy to see why. We all learn all of the powerful mode you provide sensible information on your website and in addition strongly encourage contribution from people on the theme while our own girl is undoubtedly learning a lot of things. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the year. You are conducting a powerful job.

  8. I just wanted to send a simple message so as to say thanks to you for some of the superb information you are placing on this website. My long internet investigation has now been rewarded with pleasant facts and strategies to exchange with my relatives. I ‘d mention that most of us site visitors are quite fortunate to dwell in a really good website with many outstanding individuals with great tricks. I feel extremely blessed to have come across your web page and look forward to really more fabulous moments reading here. Thank you again for everything.

  9. I actually wanted to develop a quick word in order to express gratitude to you for these pleasant pointers you are giving on this website. My extended internet look up has now been compensated with awesome strategies to talk about with my companions. I ‘d believe that we site visitors actually are undoubtedly fortunate to exist in a good place with many special people with good tactics. I feel extremely blessed to have encountered the web pages and look forward to really more exciting moments reading here. Thanks a lot once more for a lot of things.

  10. I want to show my admiration for your kind-heartedness for persons who really want assistance with this concern. Your personal commitment to getting the message along turned out to be astonishingly invaluable and have regularly helped employees like me to get to their ambitions. Your personal useful facts indicates so much to me and further more to my peers. With thanks; from all of us.

  11. fantastic submit, ?ery informative. ? pondwr ?hy the ot??r specialists of t?is sector don’t understand
    t?is. ??u m??t proceed ?our writing. I am confident, you h?ve a great readers’ base
    alre?dy!

  12. My wife and i felt quite contented that Emmanuel could deal with his researching via the precious recommendations he acquired out of the web pages. It’s not at all simplistic just to happen to be offering secrets and techniques which a number of people may have been making money from. We really see we have you to give thanks to because of that. The entire illustrations you made, the straightforward website menu, the friendships you help to instill – it is many wonderful, and it’s making our son in addition to the family believe that this subject is cool, and that’s particularly indispensable. Thank you for all the pieces!

  13. Thanks so much for providing individuals with remarkably terrific possiblity to read articles and blog posts from here. It is often very fantastic and as well , full of a lot of fun for me and my office friends to visit your website a minimum of three times every week to find out the fresh things you will have. And indeed, I am usually fulfilled with the terrific advice served by you. Certain 1 areas in this post are unequivocally the most suitable I have had.

  14. I actually wanted to compose a simple remark so as to thank you for all the wonderful information you are placing on this site. My prolonged internet search has finally been compensated with extremely good know-how to go over with my classmates and friends. I ‘d say that many of us visitors are definitely fortunate to exist in a fabulous site with so many marvellous people with valuable solutions. I feel somewhat privileged to have discovered the website and look forward to many more pleasurable moments reading here. Thanks once again for everything.

  15. I simply wanted to thank you so much yet again. I do not know what I might have taken care of in the absence of these points contributed by you relating to such a industry. Completely was a hard crisis in my position, nevertheless finding out your specialised style you managed the issue took me to weep with gladness. I am just happy for this help and expect you know what an amazing job you’re putting in instructing many others thru your webpage. I am sure you have never met all of us.

  16. Wow, amazing blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is fantastic, let alone the content!

  17. Wow! Thank you! I constantly wanted to write on my website something like that. Can I implement a portion of your post to my site?

  18. Magnificent goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just too excellent. I really like what you have acquired here, really like what you’re stating and the way in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still care for to keep it smart. I cant wait to read far more from you. This is actually a tremendous site.

  19. I have been surfing online more than three hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. In my opinion, if all website owners and bloggers made good content as you did, the internet will be much more useful than ever before.

  20. My husband and i got so thrilled when Michael could finish up his investigation by way of the ideas he acquired through the web site. It is now and again perplexing to just always be giving out secrets and techniques that many others may have been trying to sell. Therefore we see we now have the website owner to be grateful to for this. All of the illustrations you have made, the easy site menu, the friendships you can make it possible to instill – it is all terrific, and it’s really facilitating our son and our family reason why the subject matter is entertaining, and that’s wonderfully essential. Thanks for all the pieces!

  21. I intended to post you this very small remark just to say thanks the moment again for those lovely tricks you’ve documented at this time. This has been certainly wonderfully generous with you giving extensively what some people could possibly have advertised for an ebook to make some money for themselves, notably seeing that you might have tried it in case you wanted. The tactics in addition worked like a fantastic way to realize that most people have the same fervor the same as my own to know the truth significantly more on the topic of this issue. I know there are thousands of more fun situations ahead for many who see your blog.

  22. I simply wanted to thank you very much all over again. I am not sure what I could possibly have created in the absence of those solutions shown by you directly on that area of interest. It had been a very traumatic matter in my position, but understanding your skilled form you dealt with that made me to jump for happiness. I will be happier for this work and pray you realize what an amazing job you are getting into teaching other individuals all through your web site. I know that you’ve never come across any of us.

  23. I intended to compose you the tiny note so as to say thanks once again with the pretty views you’ve documented above. It was extremely open-handed with people like you to give easily exactly what many individuals would’ve offered as an electronic book to end up making some cash on their own, particularly considering that you might have done it if you ever considered necessary. The things additionally worked to become fantastic way to understand that other individuals have similar dreams much like my own to know a good deal more in regard to this condition. I’m sure there are several more pleasurable opportunities in the future for folks who scan your blog post.

  24. I and my friends came looking at the excellent secrets and techniques found on the blog and so then developed a terrible suspicion I had not thanked you for those techniques. All the men are already totally passionate to study all of them and now have really been taking advantage of those things. We appreciate you indeed being really kind as well as for considering this kind of great information millions of individuals are really eager to understand about. Our own sincere regret for not expressing gratitude to sooner.

  25. I want to show my passion for your kindness in support of folks that really need assistance with this topic. Your special commitment to passing the message around appears to be amazingly helpful and have consistently permitted people just like me to achieve their dreams. Your new warm and friendly tips and hints entails much to me and somewhat more to my office workers. Best wishes; from everyone of us.

  26. You actually make it seem really easy along with your presentation but I to find this matter to be actually something that I think I’d never understand. It seems too complicated and extremely huge for me. I am taking a look ahead for your next submit, I¡¦ll try to get the hang of it!

  27. Thank you a lot for providing individuals with an exceptionally nice chance to read in detail from this web site. It’s usually so excellent and also full of a great time for me personally and my office fellow workers to visit your site on the least three times a week to read the latest tips you have got. And definitely, I’m also always satisfied with the astounding tactics served by you. Certain 2 facts in this posting are really the most effective I’ve had.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *