Maybe I'm odd, but I don't really do podcasts at all.
Which is quite frustrating, as there are various technical blogs I've followed over the years, and when some of them transition to a podcast, or a video equivalent, I just stop following.
There's probably some useful/interesting information in there, I'm just not interested in suffering through the 40-50% waffle, or worse - meaningless video of a talking head.
I don't disagree with the premise of this article, but it's an incredible act of erasure to declare the meaningful start of podcasts to be 2014.
There's a rich history in the preceding decade that's completely ignored (and would help explicate what's happened since).
Podcasting exited way before 2014. Just check Wikipedia.
In fact Steve Jobs talked about it on stage so they were important enough for him, yet he died 2011...
Great journalism /s
I host a nationwide radio show that we also publish as a podcast. Podcasting is not radio, as much as I'd enjoy that. We are the only show I'm aware of that publishes "show notes", links to things we talk about on the radio, encouraging listeners to check those things out. We are also deeply tied to the schedule: some of my favorite podcasts vary greatly in length, our show is exactly 25 minutes every time, with a reminder "what show you are listening to" around 12 minutes.
Radio is still great at having massive, immediate, but highly passive audience. In every other regard, podcasts are so much better.
Eh. There’s a podcast for every topic under the sun, and I can listen whenever I want, wherever I want; even offline. Podcasts are like Spotify or Napster or something. They’re a marked improvement over local radio, and by a long shot.
It was always going to be a sea of shows - the low barrier for entry, basically owning a microphone, means anyone can at least give it a shot. A bunch of friends rambling on Discord and calling that a podcast, is now a common practice.
You need a very specific kind of person to produce a podcast worth your while. It needs to be extremely well researched, written for audio, and delivered a certain way. It will never be radio, regardless of the monetization model, because it's not live - which is arguably one of its biggest draws.
I was listening to podcasts that were more radio than art long before 2014. Surely that was the origin of the medium, and Serial was notable by its being an exception rather than the rule?
A really good discussion of this I heard recently (on a podcast) talked about how just like in the early days of YouTube people could tell there was potential there but nobody could quite tell how much effort it would take to make money off it and what kind of ROI there was. Then things like Serial (and specific YouTube properties they mentioned like Rocket Jump and VGHS) showed exactly what it took and what could be made from content specifically created for these platforms and now people have more of a blueprint.
For example (these are my thoughts now), you can’t release a $300m AAA blockbuster movie directly on YouTube because you will never make your money back. But you can make money off unboxing videos.
Zoomers and young millenials can't listen to radio - the word itself is uncool.
Re-branding is important. If it's new, it's cool. And everything old is made new again.
Functionally, of course there's some differences: podcasts are free from the physical limitations of radio, there's an unlimited number of channels, and anyone can start one. But at their essence, they're the same.
What is "just" radio suppose to mean? Radio is awesome.