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Saturday, 04 November 2006


Mark Vogelzang

Steve, If you don't know, we really don't know here in public radio! Our theory is this. We believe actively in offering our podcasts for free - (and that may be our biggest problem) giving away our content in hopes that listeners will use it, feeling good about the extra value in service, and hoping that some day those podcast subscribers will pledge during a membership drive to our member supported station. Nearly every NPR member station offers podcasts of its local news and interview programs, and many folks download shows every day and every week. But on an individual level, a subscription to download a podcast does not equate with actually playing it on your iPod, or actually listening to it on your laptop. My experience as a public radio manager is one of being overwhelmed by the free choices to which I can subscribe locally & nationally; never having time to sync up my iPod; and always ALWAYS having an equally compelling new program to listen to on the radio. Hitting the delete button is one way of clearing away the clutter, but there are new podcasts rolling out down the pipeline every day into my Mac, and not enough hours in the day to get to them. I've given up for the time being. Free is great when it comes to content, but we may need to have our listeners actually pay for our excellent programs before we can conclusively assume that they are using our podcasts...and then we'll have to face your dilemma all over again...

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