« Apple: Two Million Copies of OS X Tiger Shipped | Main | Apple's Jobs Calls Podcasting "hottest thing going in radio" »
5 Myths of Podcasting: Myth 1 - Podcasting is Tivo for Radio
June 06, 2005
Commentary: Elle Webb
Over and over, when writers try to describe what podcasting is, they use the same worn-out metaphor: Podcasting is like Tivo for Radio.
On first read, the comparison doesn't seem so bad. Both Tivo and podcasting do let you watch or listen to programming on-demand. They are both cool. They both let you avoid commercials.
What's different about them? Just about everything else!
Comparing podcasting to Tivo is bit like dancing about architecture.
Podcasting is not like Tivo for radio. Podcasting is using newsfeeds to distribute information about audio files. It's a way that you can use your computer to automatically download an amazing variety of shows, so you can listen to them (or watch them) at your convenience. It's not controlled by any company, so any one with a computer and an Internet connection can make a podcast.
Tivo is a little like podcasting.....except that Tivo locks you into one vendor, Tivo only lets you watch the same junk that you already watch, Tivo's adoption rate is pretty slow, you have to buy Tivo, and Tivo does nothing for content producers.
podcasting is not tivo it is desktop/portable push reinvented
Posted by: GK at June 12, 2005 02:20 PM
I've used the Tivo metaphor to help describe the mechanics of receiving podcasts - the whole it grabs what you want without you having to do anything. But most of the time my folks don't even know what a Tivo is! Then I ask them if they heard of a Betamax.
Posted by: Andy Wibbels at June 13, 2005 09:34 AM
The fact remains that beneath the surface of the comparison of Tivo and podcasting is a complexity that most people really don't care about. If giving them a hook to grab hold of like calling podcasting "Tivo for radio" turns on a lightbulb for people who don't know ANYTHING about podcasting, then, it's a valid way of introducing it to them that does no harm and creates a bit more understanding about this new medium than they had before.
Time after time, when I talk to groups about podcasting, almost to a person, they don't want to hear the details -- at least, initially. They want a tagline to wrap their minds around, to snuggle up to and get familiar with, before they let you get into the nitty gritty of what it is and is capable of and what it can do for them.
I respectfully disagree with your assertion that "Podcasting is not like Tivo for radio." It IS. . . until they're ready for the next step. Until podcasting is as simple as turning on a radio and changing the station, this multi-step process has to be boiled down to it's essence so non-techies can understand it.
Posted by: Lawrence Stevens at June 22, 2005 01:03 AM
Post a comment
Copyright 2004-5 Podcasting News