Podcast: The B.S. Report

There are many different podcasts out there on the internet but it is my belief that ESPN consistently puts out the most well-produced and interesting sports podcasts that gives a different perspective than their radio and T.V. shows such as SportsCenter. My personal favorite out of their suite of podcasts is The B.S. Report, featuring the sportswriter and journalist Bill Simmons. It is generally produced weekly covers all the sports of the weeks as well as going off-topic on ramblings on various celebrities, news in the world, movies, t.v. shows, and pop culture in general. Many times he has guests that recur on the show such as the clip I chose here with the comedian Cousin Sal. He has had other entertainers, athletes, sports writers, and personalities on the show in the past as well. There is no real structure to the show as te host tends to discuss subjects that he wants to which many times lead to him talking about his love and at times disgust for his Boston area teams. In the clip below he discusses the outcomes of the games on Sunday for the NFL as well as how he won his gambling bet with three tams. It gives you an idea of the kind of flavor he brings to the show. It isn’t just a dry radio host giving you information; he gives you an interesting and often times humorous view on the world of sports. His words can sometimes be controversial but he does not bite his tongue and says what’s on his mind which is why he has become so popular. I recommend this podcast for anyone who is interested in sports but gets tired with the boring ways that it has been covered by the media and are looking for something fresh. There is a reason why it is always near the top of the overall iTunes list for podcasts and now is as good a time as any to find out why.

How To Podcast

When you decide that you want to create your own podcast there are a number of steps that need to be followed. First, I would say that you need to be committed and stick with it. I would say on average that you should post a new podcast around once a week. Before you actually record yourself it is good to have a general idea and plan on what it is you are talking about. Before you turn on the mic you should´nt have a word for word script but you should have an outline on what you´re going to say. You should decide the topic and format and how long you generally want it to be. This will give you a focus that will help you to gain more listeners. Then you need to create the podcast. Nowadays there are many different audio programs you can use that allow you to record your voice and edit it with just your computer. One of the best programs to use is Audacity. Afterwards, you have to decide which way you want to upload it to the internet so that people can subscribe to it and download it. There are many services such as Soundcloud and blip.tv that allow you to upload mp3 files and share it with others. It is important to come up with a name for your podcast that catches the attention of people. Also, when uploading your podcast make sure to create an ID3 tag, which can be done in Audacity, so that you can put the information of your podcast there. The final step is for you to do some self-promotion of your podcast through any and all channels you can. Whether it´s your Twitter, Facebook, website forums, it is important that you draw attention and get people noticing your work. Once you follow all of these steps you will become a podcast-making expert.

Podcasting

Podcasting is a fairly new idea in the realm of web 2.0 that has revolutionized the way we listen to and watch our favorite shows. In the spirit of everything 2.0 podcasts allow the user to choose what they want to watch, when they want to watch it, and where because you can take it with you on a any one of your portable devices. There are a variety of different podcasts out there from comedy to music to how-to shows. Many websites and radio shows now have their own podcasts to add additional content for viewers who want something extra. The key feature of podcasts is that you can subscribe to them through RSS feeds or other ways that can download them to your iTunes directly once a new show is released. Podcasting has almost allowed people to make their own radio stations for themselves. Before when you turned on the radio you had to listen to whatever was on at the time. Now, you can edit your own podcast together bringing in parts of your favorite shows such as sports, politics, world news, and so forth and you don’t need to rely on your own radio dial. It is also another way for the average joe to get their voice out and create their own type of radio show with friends or by themselves and distribute it to the world very easily. If you are good enough, you can gain a following and become famous on the internet through your podcast. It is a great and new way to make a living through the power of technology. The greatest podcasts are those that give us new and original content and not just re-purposed information that can be found on a radio show or website. They can give us new insight into topics on the world or be shows that are there to entertain us with humor. Whatever you wish to listen to it is all at your fingertips due to the power of podcasting.

Here is a great list that Paste Magazine made of their 10 favorite podcasts.

Are Corporate Blogs Good Or Bad?

In the age of information that we live in now everybody is always trying to be in constant contact with each other. That philosophy is no different to a huge corporation that now realize they have to be engaged with their consumer base in order to stay at the top. One of the ways that companies now try to stay in touch with their audience and get feedback is through corporate blogs. Some companies try to have different employees give their accounts on what is going on and others have a general blog for the company that informs people on changes being made, addresses problems, and lets people see what is on the horizon. In some ways these blogs can feel less than genuine as it can seem like the company is being fake in order to have more supporters of a product. To me, it works best if you have various employees writing on what is on their mind that is less academic and can give the audience a sense of transparency and make a huge billion dollar corporation a little bit down to earth. I believe it´s important for companies to always have a sense of constant communication with the people who support them. You want to feel to these people that you care so you can have that dialogue with a specific customer in the comments section. Before the world of web 2.0 people felt completely distant from these monolithic corporations that were seen as only interested in your money. Now, you can build a strong positive brand image by connecting with the people in an honest way through corporate blogs. Nowadays, the market is so competitive and everyone has a choice in everything. One of the top ways to build up a big consumer base is to have a strong presence on the web whether through a corporate blog or through social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. In the end, the blog helps the relationship between consumer and producer as well as keeping the corporation on their toes and always delivering the best products.

Catalunya Radio Visit

For one of our classes we took a field trip to Catalunya Radio, the top radio station for all of Catalunya located in Barcelona. Our professor works there so we got a chance to get a tour and see how it all works. While being there I started to think about how the radio fits into our 2.0 world. How does the radio continue to survive when you can get your information so much quicker and you have the choice to select which news or music you want to hear. If you look at the iPod it has changed how we get our music. The newest music is now almost always released on the internet first before you can hear it on the radio. To me, I think the radio is generally listened to by older people who have a longer commute to work and don´t really use technology like the iPod. But you can see the way radio has tried to adapt to our Web 2.0 way of thinking. Many different radio stations such as Catalunya Radio have presences on various social networks like Facebook and Twitter. They use their website and these other avenues to get in touch with their audience and have a constant conversation with them. The problem becomes when you have too many ways to get in touch and everything gets scattered all over the place. Our professor was telling us that it was a problem for Catalunya Radio because they had to tell everyone so many different options to get in contact with them. It was important to find a centralized way in which to relieve and respond to messages from viewers. That is one issue sometimes with this information age that we live in: sometimes there can be too much noise and you can get overwhelmed with everything. It spreads everything out so there is not one place you can go. My solution to that would be to have all the complaints or comments be able to be directed to the main web site of the station. That is where people get the majority of their information from about the shows and different aspects of the station itself. This way they can get everything they could want to know about the station all in one place without being pulled in many directions.

Politics 2.0

It is clear in today’s world as a political candidate you need to reach the people in every avenue possible, which includes the internet. Politicians now use Twitter and other services in web 2.0 to get their message across and gain a following which will hopefully help them get elected in the long run. It is now one of the best ways to get your postion to the masses, especially younger people, because it is not as expensive as ads on television and there are more people that you can get their attention than one commercial at a certain time. Obama is the most recent and prominent example of how social networks and web 2.0 can help to get a candidate elected. He really captured the attention of the young generation and embraced the new technology unlike anyone before. His campaign has changed how everyone else from now on must promote themselves in politics. Now with the internet the people have a chance to influence campaigns and politics more than ever before. The power is now in the hands of the voter more so than ever. There is now more of a dialogue between the politicians and the people so the discussion allows for many sides to a story. I think the web 2.0 has helped us gain transparency with our politicians and allowed for a better understanding of what they do and the impact we can expect from them.

Multimedia Journalism

Multimedia storytelling involves the use of various types of media such as text, photos, video, and an amount of interactivity on a website that is presented in a nonlinear format. This means that each piece of different media complements each other and is not redundant information. You can also skip around to different areas of the story and not feel lost because it isn’t a linear progression. The user is allowed to choose how they want to view a story, giving them control which is a product of Web 2.0. These types of stories usually have much more depth into a topic and allow for a more immersive experience for the user. Multimedia storytelling helps to gain new perspectives on issues in a user-friendly way. Here are some of my favorite examples of great multimedia stories:

The Dragon Children talks about how chinese parents expect so much out of their children.

Unsung New Yorkers is about all of the individuals no one really thinks about who help to keep a huge city like New York running.

Reframing Mexico looks at Mexico City past all of the violence and gets to the heart of a community with strong values and pride.