Are Podcasts the next Blogs?
Users can find podcasts all over the Internet, from technology news sites like news.com.com to alternative news sites like partipate.net, allowing users control over when, where and from whom they receive their news to going as far as actually creating their own blogs for anyone to read and uploading their own podcasts for anyone to download.
Ipodder.org, along with other sites like audio.weblogs.com, allow listeners to download mp3 files to their audio player so they can listen to it at any time.
Ipodder.org is an online directory of podcast feeds that users search and download according to their own interests.
Ipodder.org describes their software as a "small program that runs on your computer. Its only purpose is to download audio files, usually mp3's, directly to your mp3 device."
Companies have taken the idea of podcasting even further by creating a subscription service similar to newspapers and cable. The catch is one must download theiraggrevatorr, similar to the one found at ipodder.org and ipodderx.com, for the podcasts found on their directories and others. It is alternative software to iTunes.
According to ipodderx.com, this software allows users to "get [their] news, podcasts, video logs, or anything else in a newsfeed. Depending on which feeds you subscribe to, iPodderX will deliver Audio, Movies, Images, Documents, and any other kind of file right to your computer."
One doesn'’t even have to search for what one likes day after day. The aggrevator will do it for them based on what the user indicates, similar to the powers of Tivo recording shows the viewer will enjoy at a later date, removing the constraints of time to the viewer'’s schedule.
These mp3 devices are allowing users to digest the information that they prefer, silencing the controversial voices and ideas of others the user doesn't want to hear. People are selecting the news they would like to be exposed.
These devices also allowing greater participation on the users part. Now anyone can be a journalist.
Tony Pederson, the Belo Distinguished Chair of Journalism at Southern Methodist University, in a lecure to his ethics class Tuesday stated his belief that bloggers and other forthcoming technology will leave news in the hands of the people. With more voices out there who aren't trained to think objectively and hide their biases, more and more people will take what they read, see and hear on the Internet at face value.
Podcasting has become so great that Christopher Breen, in an article for the online Playlist magazine talked of his experience at the first ever Portable Media Expo in Ontario, CA where "podcasters where well represented."
It is becoming an acceptable form of journalism in part because it is so easy for the user to download the podcasts and listen to them later and because it allows everyone to have a say.
The article later went on to mention how google and yahoo along with other media sites are working on a way to create their own directories and pocast feeds.
What's next? Trying to figure out how companies and media organizations can make a profit from these feeds. If they are in demand, the media will deliver... but they also have to meet their own standards and that requires making money to keep the business going.