Saturday, February 12, 2005
With articles in USA Today and nearly everywhere else anyone looked, I think it's fair to say this week was the official tipping point for podcasting. I hadn't even heard of podcasting myself until less than three weeks ago, when DJ Timmah mentioned it to me. Now I'm obsessed and I can't wait to do my first podcast.
In a nutshell, it's portable web-based radio. Sorta. If you want to do a show, you pre-record it at home or wherever and then upload it to your blog or website in MP3 form. Anyone who wants to listen can download it to their hard drive. If you want, after downloading it you can transfer the MP3 to your iPod or other portable listening device. There's also software that acts as a "podcast aggregator" which allows you to "subscribe" to your favorite podcasts. The software can check to see if the podcasts you like have posted a new addition, and if you want, you can set it to download it automatically and even move it to your iTunes library. Forget TV On The Radio; this is TiVo On The Internet.
Ex-MTV VJ Adam Curry actually invented this. His daily podcast is a primarily tech show, The Daily Source Code, although he also played Michael Jackson's "Don't Stop Till You Get Enough" on one show earlier this week. So far I've listened to Adam's show, Coverville, Reel Reviews' interesting take on the Sex Pistols film The Filth And The Fury (which has been languishing in the middle of my Netflix queue forever), and the mad British rantings of Dark Compass. Podcast Alley is a good source of info on the variety of podcasts out there.
Most podcasts are primarily talk, with some dabbling in music. Mine will be the opposite. This week, ASCAP began offering a $250 annual license allowing non-commercial podcasters to play ASCAP music. This might sound like a lot of cash, but it's only a couple bucks more than I was paying crappy Live365 for the privilege of doing the same for six months, and that setup was about a billion times lamer. I know not everyone who wants to do a podcast will be able to afford the license, and that sucks, but right now it seems like a fair option. This despite the fact that there are a bunch of restrictions: you can't take requests, nor can you post the or disseminate info about copyrighted material contained in the program.
So, I'm jumping on this. I bought an iMic yesterday. Why I waited so long to buy this essential tool that costs all of $35, I don't know. Now I can also burn dj mixes, vinyl, and more onto CD, or make them into MP3s. My home dj rig is hooked into my Mac and, with the help of Audio Hijack Pro and iTunes, I am about to become a podcaster. I'm not sure when the show will debut, but it will be soon, and it will be here, so watch this space. I've already recorded a couple short test demos for myself.
And speaking of tipping points, thanks to all those who read and/or linked my site this week. Traffic is way, way up. I'm also pretty psyched that if you type the words Hoboken blog into Google, the first site that pops up is this blog. As Mark Borchardt said in American Movie, "Kick fuckin' ass!"