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Podcasts shouldn’t aspire to be the next blogging platform. It should be the next HBO. → 

Posted on 20 December 2014

Nick Quah:

“I want, or would like, more Serials, more… Breaking Bads, more True Detectives, more Scandals, and more Game of Throneses in my headphones. In my eardrums. In my head.

“In my opinion, that’s the real North Star here. Podcasts shouldn’t aspire to be the next blogging platform, vis a vis Odeo. It should be the next-next HBO.”

I understand what Nick is saying- he wants high-quality, well-produced podcasts. So do I. But podcasts are just a media form, not a platform or producer. Just as video is used by YouTube and HBO, podcasts can be used by the low end and the high.

I think what we need to do is stop lumping all podcasts together. They are wildly different in scope, subject, and production. Four guys having an unedited conversation about movies for two hours is not the same as a skilled interviewer talking to someone for an hour, and that in itself is wildly different from a production like Serial. Categorizing them as a single genre and tier is like telling someone who enjoyed Breaking Bad to check out E-Talk Daily because it comes from that box in the living room, too.

That’s why some people are saying podcasts are having a renaissance while others are saying, no, they’ve been doing just fine, thanks. Both sides are correct. Podcasts, as a form of storing and delivering content, have been humming along just fine. The new thing is podcasts like SerialStartUp, and the Radiotopia network- high-quality, well-produced, podcast-first storytelling: the HBO-quality content.

As I’ve said before, podcasts aren’t back, a new type of podcast has arrived.

Update: Robert McGinley Myers has an excellent piece on this that you should read.

Filed under: radio

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