10 April 2009

Podcasting - Netcasting. My thoughts on the concept

Depending on your loyalties, it's either a Podcast, or a Netcast.  Call it what you will, I discovered this medium in mid 2007.   I'd heard of the concept before that, but had not really bothered to see what it was all about.  And of course, I'm now a devotee.

The idea that you can sample whatever content takes your interest, whenever it suits you, is revolutionary.  However, the aspect that really impresses me is that it creates a real online community.  And more than just a community for the tech geeks, it encompases virtually any field of interest you can imagine.

The most appealing aspect of this medium is that it's not only for the media professionals.  Anyone can have a go at it with the minimum of equipment.  You can take in the excellent and professionally produced tech content from podcasting god, Leo Laporte, right through the spectrum to the completely amateur shows made on laptops with USB mics.  And it's all free to download whenever you choose.

Having an aviation background naturally swayed my interest in that direction when searching for content.  There are many excellent shows to be sampled here, covering everything from airlines to general aviation, news to politics and technical issues.  And the best part of it is the active encouragement by many podcasters for their audience to participate in the community.  Posting in the forums at Uncontrolled Airspace has allowed me to communicate with many others who, although I've never met them, share a common bond - people who "get it".

Relative newcomers to the aviation podcasting sphere are the Airplane Geeks.  These guys cover the aviation news of the week, and have a guest each week to cover various topics.  Of all the podcasters I've listened to, these guys offers the widest range of ways to participate in the online community they're building.  Email, voice mail, even audio files.  I recently decided to send in a couple of articles from local newspapers here in Australia which I thought they might find newsworthy, and was thrilled when the "Geeks" included them in an episode.  They appeared to appreciate the participation, so I sent in a few more articles & links, and now I'm the "Australia Desk".  

This is the greatest aspect of the new media era.  Allowing regular people to be active in their fields of interest, rather than just being spectators.  I'm really enjoying it, and I'm very grateful to Max & Courtney at the Geeks for allowing me the opportunity to contribute to their show.

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