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Comparison: Podcasting and Blogging Part 1
Easton over at Business Blog Wire made a comment here recently about coming to understand podcasting. I made an off-the-cuff comment that podcasting is just like blogging, but more work. That got me to thinking about the ways that blogging and podcasting are similar, and the ways in that they differ. I haven't fully fleshed these ideas out yet, so this will be a multi-part series on the similarities and differences.

Let's kick off with a similarity.

Successful bloggers understand that blogging is really a conversation. A good blog is a forum where one (or sometimes more) people have a soapbox, but that 15 inches of height is the only thing that separates them from their readers. Thoughts and information are offered and readers have relatively unfettered access to respond. Sometimes the conversation is enlightening and sometimes it's frustrating, but it's almost never boring.

The podcasting conversation is extremely similar to the blogging conversation. A decent show blog should have comments enabled and, if you're a smart cookie like me, you'll allow audio comments either through Odeo or natively through your blogware like the excellent Loudblog. We get about a dozen comments or so per show which is only a small percentage of listeners, but that conversation is important.

The podcasting conversation is a little slower than the blogging conversation and I think that's for two reasons:
  1. Blog readers are already at your blog and are therefore able to respond immediately. Podcast listeners can be anywhere doing anything and likely can't respond right away and in many cases either don't bother or forget
  2. If a picture is worth a thousand words, an audio file is worth a handful of paragraphs. A podcaster's real feelings are much easier to derive from audio than text and therefore less open to interpretation. For example, read this sentence: I don't like dogs. Now listen to it by clicking here. Notwithstanding I do like dogs (I have two of them), my feelings are much clearer depending on how I say it. The written word is much more vague and open to a greater range of interpretation
I'll be talking more about the similarities and differences over the next few days.

1 Comments/Trackbacks

Thanks for this thoughtful comparison, Jon. I imagine that the tools that enable and enhance conversations over blogs and podcasts will only get better over time.

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