Thursday, March 02, 2006

Podcasts need sponsors?

The whole point of podcasting seems to be to let a few guys have an interesting conversation in front of a reasonable recording system. From the few I've listened to, there seems to be no interest in cleaning up the audio, or even bothering to get a decent quality connection in some cases. Low quality phone connections seem to me to be part of the "charm" of podcasting.

I'm learning that a good blog entry has to be edited. Why can't the podcasters take the time to clean up the audio a bit?

If you're not going to be bothered to turn out a professional quality product, you've not sunk any costs. What qualifies the podcast for the value subtraction inherent in an AD? If you're not willing to add value to a few guys talking... you essentially lower the value back towards zero.

We're all supposed to ADD value to the blogosphere. Communism? Perhaps, but it's the community values we seem to share. Let's keep it that way.

It doesn't cost anything to do a digital sound recording. It costs little to do it right. Someone with a good ear for editing could clean things up. You can keep the dollar cost to zero, and avoid sponsorship.

To prove the point... here's an MP3 I made on a laptop, (349kb, 50 seconds) with the most basic software imaginable, Sound Recorder in Windows XP. Consider it my very first podcast, if you like. Here's my transcript (notably missing from most podcasts)

So, my question is...
since anybody can record a digital sound file for essentially no money,

and for tech guys should be able to do it for no money,

why do they need sponsors?

why does anybody need to be paid
to record something and record it to a file
and put it on a server
and let people download it

where's the money going
why does any sponsorship need to be there?

you don't have to pay to promote it
you really don't have to pay to produce it
doesn't make sense

that's it.

I found a cost... you need to have a host for your MP3 file... I happen to use 1and1 to host the family domain, so it's a sunk cost for me. I doubt this file will put me anywhere near my bandwidth cap. If it did, then it would be encrypted bittorrent time.

The biggest cost so far is the time to do the transcript, which is about 6 times the length of the recording. It's tempting to go back and edit out some pauses, etc.

I'm willing to give the benefit of the doubt... what are the costs associated with doing a podcast?

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