Dan Gillmor has a post about podcasting. Check out the comments below it to get a sneak preview what the next few months will be like. This is all the same stuff I’ve grown so fond of in my 5 years of ebook advocacy. The amazing part of the detraction is that a lot of these are the same arguments why weblogs were unnecessary and irrelevant. “We have pros to do this, why bother with this amateur stuff?” To appropriate a line from Steve Gillmor’s defense of RSS:
Nothing indicates success more than the counterattack by those threatened by disruptive innovation.
This is all predicated on asking the wrong question. It isn’t “What is so important about these guys in their basements talking to their computers?” The real question is “How has modern commercial radio failed us so badly that these guys and their homegrown content is more compelling than what huge corporations are able to provide?” The answer is simply – relevance. Clear Channel has gone out of its way to make radio less relevant to the listeners. Instead of locally programmed and DJ’ed shows, it is national playlists and DJs that run 20 different stations simultaneously from Scottsdale Arizona. On the otherhand, when I pick podcasts to subscribe to, it is relevant to me. If it isn’t, I unsubscribe from it. It’s a remarkably efficient system. If someone is talking about a subject I care about, it need not have the highest production values. I’m starved for relevance, and all the highly produced bullshit served out by big media isn’t giving it to me. Listening to guys talk about board games is more interesting to me than anything I can find on the 200 digital cable channels available to me right now.