The (Sort of) Growth of the Podcast
Podcasts weren't born last year with the arrival of Serial, the wildly successful story of an unsolved 1999 murder that you could hear solely on podcast.
Serial likely provided the first encounter with podcasts for a lot of listeners, but podcasts first entered the consciousness and our iPods ten years ago last weekend, when early adopters saw in them the next great media revolution. The New Oxford American Dictionary even named "podcast" the word of the year in 2005. What wasn't to love?
It turns out a lot. Early podcasts were hard to access. Most non-tech people didn't know they existed, advertisers didn't get them, and their deep association to public radio made them look less like the next creative frontier, and more like an alternate distribution medium for popular public radio shows like This American Life and Radiolab.
Thanks to Serial, a renaissance may be underway. Edison Research reported in February that 17 percent of Americans listened to at least one podcast in the prior month, up from 14 percent in 2012.
- Nicole Taylor - host of Hot Grease, a podcast on Heritage Media Network
- Matthew Lieber - co-founder and President of Gimlet Media
- Jenna Weiss-Berman - Director of Audio at BuzzFeed.She previously produced for public radio
- Nicholas Quah - founder of Hot Pod, a podcasting newsletter. He also works in audience development at Panoply
Listen to these great podcast recommendations from our guests:
- Nicole - "Gravy" - produced by Southern Foodways Alliance
- Jenna- "Mystery Show," "Reply All," "Start Up" - produced by Gimlet Media
- Matt - "Another Round," - produced by BuzzFeed
- Matt - "Longform Podcast" - produced by Longform and The Atavist
- Nick - "The Gist" - produced by Slate
- Nick - "Song Exploder" - produced by Radiotopia
- Nick - "Hollywood Prospectus" - produced by Grantland
- "Listening To Serial" - Zach Sherwin
- "Podcasts Overtake My Life" - The Passionate & Objective Jokerfan
- "4X Upright Bass Cover of Serial Podcast Theme" - Dave Speranza
Mark Oppenheimer guest-hosted today's show. Chion Wolf is our technical producer.