Gervais, Pay to Play

Posted on February 21, 2006
Filed Under podcasting | 6 Comments

Via Podcasting News I see that the Ricky Gervais podcast is going subscription via Audible. Now, I’m contrarian on this particular cast. I happen to have access to a data set that tells me that most people that have an opinion on the show really love it, yet I hate it. I cannot listen to an entire episode. I think I made it 10 minutes into the first one I tried, and less than 5 every subsequent attempt. I am also immune to the charms of The Office, a show everyone else seems to find brilliant and which I find unwatchable. I must lack the Gervais appreciation gene.

I’ll be interested in how the attempt goes. They are charging $2 per episode for a show that is, at best, completely pulled out of their ass. They recently were on about this Guiness Record nonsense. Here’s my prediction: fewer than 1% of their current listeners continue on to the paid subscription. It’s just not that high a value to charge the same amount as an episode of the Lost TV show, and almost no one is going to want to dick with all the Audible stuff anyway.

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6 Responses to “Gervais, Pay to Play”

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  1. Brian W. on February 21st, 2006 10:29 pm

    I think it’s kinda funny that they’re all talking about how they have the guiness record for most downloaded podcast right before they tank their own ratings by charging admission. It just doesn’t make sense to me. I know I’m not listening anymore, that’s for sure. I enjoyed the show, but not enough to go pay for it. There are few shows I would support w/ my wallet.

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  3. Eddie Dickey on February 21st, 2006 10:37 pm

    I didn’t care for it either. Plus they kept saying that they would podcast 12 or so editions for free.. So I knew this was coming and with that knowledge alone, I did not want to invest the time..

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  5. Mike Seyfang on February 22nd, 2006 1:53 am

    Well I love the show, have the appropriate gene (being a cynical Aussie bastard) and would gladly pony up my $$$ to get a deeper connection with Ricky + team.

    BUT…

    The ‘business model’ is fucked.
    - I ain’t gunna pay $$$ for DRM’d content (aka our previous rants)
    - I probably won’t even bother to find a new RSS feed (assuming that would be necessary to get future stuff)

    If the new shows kept on rollin down the same RSS feed as .mp3 in the clear, I’d happily pony up for something smarter like, oh, gee, a ‘stuff package’ or maybe even a ‘premium membership’ that had some tangible priveleges (like priority feedback mechanism to/from the show, extra goodies etc)

    Would love to hear some discussion on smarter business models on a clambake sometime.

    Fang – Mike Seyfang – LearnDog

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  7. matthew on February 22nd, 2006 4:32 am

    As much as Id like to disagree (I do find the first 12 podcasts very funny) sadly I just cant. I wont be paying $2 for any podcasts from Gervais and Co.

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  9. Sam Abuelsamid on February 22nd, 2006 11:54 am

    I actually do like the gervais podcast and the office. However, I don’t like it enough to pay any amount for it. After 12 episodes the schtick is already getting old. I agree with Dave that they do appear to be pulling it out of their ass. I have contributed financially to several podcasts that I have enjoyed and felt deserved my support, including buying dave’s stuff package. I don’t mind supporting the production costs of entertainment that I enjoy, and I think that people should be able to earn a living. I just think the kind of price that these guys are looking for is completely out of line for what they are providing. I agree that the whole guinness thing is bogus.

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  11. Johnny on February 23rd, 2006 2:30 pm

    I did find it to be one great podcast, but there is no way they are going to make any money off of it. Especially through audible.com.

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