Saturday, January 21, 2006

Open Stacks: It's not a podcast unless...

Greg at Open Stacks shares my frustration:

It's not a podcast unless...

I'm becoming mildly frustrated (don't have time to be more impassioned, sorry) by entities in the LIS world who slap some mp3s on their website and call it a podcast. After all, podcasting is about harnessing the power of syndication to distribute audio content, not just making audio content available.

I love that there is an mp3 of Barbara Quint's Searcher's Voice column. But sorry, folks: no feed, no podcast. What we're left with is misappropriation of a buzzword that misses the whole point of podcasting.

I just finished speaking with Chad about the new Alden Library Podcast Tour. When I see such a page, I expect there to be a feed for the audio content. Otherwise, I'm just staring at a cluster of audio files. In this case, there actually is a feed with the requisite enclosures, but it's the feed from their News Blog. We talked about some avenues for clarification and I'm confident that Chad will be fine-tuning the presentation in the forthcoming weeks. It's a laudable first effort and worth checking out.

But I can't stress enough that the magic of podcasting lies completely in the syndication. Not enough of our patrons understand this and the last thing we need to do is contribute to their misunderstanding.

No comments: