Podcasting: the First Ten Years

Planning the documentary the high-tech way

Planning the documentary the high-tech way

I have no recollection of how I marked my own tenth birthday, but I’ll certainly remember how I celebrated a decade since the word ‘podcast’ was born, because Olly and I made a Radio 4 documentary about it! Here is Part 1 and here is Part 2. If those links aren’t working for you, go here, but don’t say I sent you.

We spoke to lots of interesting and inspiring people to make the show, including (but not limited to):

Ben Hammersley, who invented the word although doesn’t seem too happy about it; one of my favourite podcasters, Flight Attendant Betty; the mighty Marc Maron; our former adversary Richard Herring; Theresa Thorn of the excellent One Bad Mother, and one half of the podcasting power couple behind the Maximum Fun empire; Nate Lanxon, editor of Wired.co.uk; Adam Curry, who was podcasting way before ‘podcasting’ even was named; Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, who begat the stratospherically successful Welcome To Night Vale, though it does not seemed to have turned their heads at all; Keith and the Girl, whose fans are so devoted, they cause themselves permanent flesh wounds; Roman Mars, who Kickstarted a shitload of money to fund 99% Invisible because the show is fantastic and so are podcast fans; Pete Donaldson of the refreshingly non-blokey (for a sports show) Football Ramble; and Producer Chris*, John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman (yes my brother) of The Bugle.

There were numerous more excellent contributors, so rather than take my word for it, you’d better listen instead.

*Fun fact: initially Chris missed our interview, because he was recovering from surgery and fell asleep doing a 1,500-piece jigsaw of a map of the world. I can’t be mad at that.

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3 Comments to “Podcasting: the First Ten Years”

  1. Is there any obvious reason why “Podcasting: The First Ten Years” has never been available as a podcast?

  2. ….and a very good summation it was too. I cannot believe its only been 10 years. All this entertainment & knowledge now in my brainbox. What did i do before it all?

    I know you mentioned monetising podcasts a little. I find Kevin Smith a fascinating case in this. The fact that he can sell out the Hammersmith Odeon/Apollo/wharever its called now just by having a live recording of one of his many podcasts is fascinatingly bizarre! (When are you, olly & martin gonna announce a date there?). The fact that Kevin Smith has said we is going to give up filmmaking and concentrate on is ‘Smodcast’ network of podcasts is also really interesting. Well, to me it is (Course, subsequently, he has announced a couple of other movies he’s working on. So, maybe he’s just talking crap. Although one of his latest flicks is based on an episode of one of his podcasts. Which, again, is fascinating. (a link : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tusk_(2014_film) ))

    Im rambling…..basically, you did good. well done etc. 🙂

    • Thanks Moz! We could easily have made a whole series about monetizing podcasts – so many diverse ways to do it, and interesting stories along the way. But I guess I do understand why R4 wouldn’t have commissioned that series…

      I think we did invite Kevin Smith onto the show but he was washing his hair that day.

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