I completely understand why people like Podcasts, but I don’t see why there is so much buzz about them. It’s nothing new for people to record some speech and post it on the web, but I suppose nothing was “new” with blogging besides permalinks and trackbacks.
This entry will simply be my thoughts on why I don’t see podcasting being as big as blogging. I am probably going to be wrong about every single thing I say here and next year podcasting will become the item that saves the world’s social climate, but until then here is what I think.
Want to link to a specific point in that 45 minute podcast? Too bad, all you can do is tell the reader around what time in the podcast that topic starts and link to the podcast. Blogs grew because you could link to a specific entry/comment and the reader knew where they were going. Very little time was wasted.
This can’t be done with podcasts and it sucks because this simply takes up a valuable resource that many of us can’t do without…
In 45 minutes how many different blog entries do you think you could go through? A lot I am sure. How many 45 minutes podcasts can you go through in 45 minutes? While the number of blogs you can go through seems unlimited (of course its not, but the number is huge), the number of podcasts you can go through is very limited.
In this environment the rich get richer with regards to traffic. If everyone is listening to one podcast and commenting on how great it is you are more likely to try it out. Trying out a new podcasts takes a considerable amount of time in comparison to reading a new blog.
Time is very limited and so are the number of podcasts I am willing to listen to. Many of you might have the ability to work and listen to a podcast at the same time, but for some reason I can’t. Unlike music, podcasts take a certain amount of attention that I am unwilling to give while trying to work.
I just focused on the reader side of podcasting. Let’s not even go into detail on how much time you must invest to create a quality podcast.
Blogging requires a browser (if you are using a webmin interface) and an Internet connection. That’s it. Podcasting takes it a step further by requiring a microphone. I know many of you have mics on your computers, but I know a lot of people who don’t. Podcasting adds one more step to the publsihing process and if you mess up during the podcast it isn’t as easy to correct with a press of the backspace button as it is in blogging.
The hype makes the money
With all of this said, two businesses (PodShow Inc. and Odeo) focused on podcasting have been able to secure funding and it makes me wonder what exactly am I missing? Does podcasting deserve the attention that it’s receiving and am I simply missing the big picture? I’d appreciate any insight I can get on this one.