All posts by Jen Thorpe

Gimlet Seeks Editor for Reply All Podcast



Gimlet looking for an editor for Reply All, a weekly podcast that covers the internet and “whatever else we are interested in” through a weird mix of ambitious narrative journalism and conversations between friends. The editor position is listed as a full-time role.

We’re looking for an editor. We do not understand sports, but we understand this role as some combination of team coach, team cheerleader, and last line of defense against all the errors and mediocrity that try to sneak into everything humans make. A bunch of smart and creative and sometimes anxious people will need to rely on and trust you.

They want someone who has years of experience in longform audio storytelling. The person must know how to structure and write for radio. They seek someone who is a pro at turning OK stories into good ones and good ones into great ones.

Some requirements include:

  • 5+ years of experience editing or story producing longform journalism, audio background is extremely important.
  • A deep comfort and proficiency in structuring and editing non-linear, narrative pieces
  • A proven knack for mentoring and helping others develop in their careers.

The editor position is listed as a full-time role. The editor must be able to work full-time in Gimlet’s Brooklyn, New York, offices. Visit the Gimlet website for more details.


Spreaker is Now an Amazon Alexa Skill



Spreaker announced that their 50,000+ show catalog is now on Amazon Alexa devices. Spreaker is now an Amazon Alexa skill. If your podcast is on Spreaker, then it is being syndicated on all Amazon Alexa devices.

Spreaker explains that Amazon Alexa devices are wireless, voice-activated “smart speakers” that feature a personal assistant voice service called “Alexa”. These devices include Amazon Echo and Amazon Echo Dot. Alexa is similar to Apple’s Siri, in that both will respond to commands that you say out loud to it.

We’ve added Spreaker’s catalog of podcasts to all Amazon Alexa devices (only English-language podcasts for now, due to some Amazon Echo limitations, but we hope to get everyone else in on it soon!), as well as Spreaker-specific commands your listeners can use to play, search, and take control of their listening experience.

With Amazon Alexa, together with automatic sharing to social media networks and syndication with Apple Podcasts, Google Play, iHeartRadio, and SONOS, podcasters who have their shows on Spreaker are getting open use of every distribution channel out there.

You don’t have to do anything to make that happen, Spreaker has already done that for you. Spreaker recommends that you let your listeners know that they can find your podcast on Amazon Alexa devices. Listeners will need to add the Spreaker Amazon Alexa skill to their device from the Amazon Store.


Podible Gives Stories a Voice



Podible is a podcast tech company that is using machine learning to solve both discovery and monetization for podcast authors and listeners. The point is to make it easy for you to discover your next favorite podcast.

You can start listening to podcasts on Podible for free on their website. It gives you the ability to personalize it. Start by selecting your favorite topics from a list of 20.

This brings up a selection of podcasts that podible things you will like, based on the topics you picked. If your favorite podcast is missing, you can add it to your list by typing the name of the podcast into the Podible search engine.

For people who regularly listen to podcasts, it will not be news to you that the podcasting industry has a Discovery problem. Since podcasting first came to the mainstream consumer’s attention, there has been an ever present issue of how to find new podcasts that are in line with a person’s listening history and general interests.

Podible offers the following:

  • Personalized Listening: Their proprietary algorithm will discover new podcasts you’ll love based on your interests.
  • Social Sharing: Easily share your favorite podcast series or episodes with friends with one simple click.
  • Any Device: Users can listen to a podcast across all their devices without any interruptions.
  • Endless Episodes: Stream millions of unique podcast episodes for free with no interruptions.

Podible sounds really good for people who like to listen to podcasts and who don’t want to spend a lot of time searching for new ones to listen to.  It also might be helpful for podcasters who want to get their podcast into the ears of new listeners.  I haven’t been able to figure out how Podible helps solve the problem of monetization for podcasters, and did not see information about that on their website.


RINGR Introduces Conference Calling



RINGR has introduced a new feature called Conference Calling. Since the RINGR beta, the ability to have conference calling was the most requested feature. Everyone wants to be able to connect and record with more than two people. And now, you can!

RINGR Conference Calling allows you to connect and record crystal-clear audio with up to five total participants… on desktop and mobile. Here is how it works:

Schedule: Send an email invitation using RINGR with a custom message and scheduled call time.

Connect: At the scheduled time, all participants using the RINGR Mobile app or a desktop browser.

Record: Each device records high quality audio while you talk over RINGR’s built-in Voice-over-IP (VoIP).

Upload: Once the call is complete, the high quality audio is uploaded to the RINGR cloud.

Merge: RINGR synchronizes, balances, and merges the individual tracks using a little audio magic.

Download: A download link is emailed to the host, with additional formats and separate tracks available to Premium members from the Account Website.

Those who want to use RINGR specifically for the Conference Calling feature will need to get a Premium account. It is $18.99 per month. The Basic account costs $7.99 per month, but does not include the new Conference Calling feature.


Listen Notes is a Podcast Search Engine



Listen Notes is a podcast search engine that actually works. At the time I am writing this, it includes 360,830 podcasts and 19,553,596 episodes.

Use the Listen Notes search engine to find people, places, topics, and more. Or, click on any of the subjects that are sitting below the search engine to have Listen Notes bring up a page filled with podcast episodes where that subject was discussed.

Listen Notes was built by a self-funded, one-person team: a software engineer in San Francisco who is going by the name Wenbin. Listen Notes has become Wenbin’s full-time job. Wenbin is an avid podcast listener who would become interested in a certain topic, find a lot of podcast episodes about that topic, and then binge listen to all of them.

Think about this: In the early days of the web, people bookmarked websites on their browsers and regularly visited those few websites. When Google became a verb, fewer and fewer people need to bookmark websites. We just search for pages. Oftentimes, we don’t care what websites these web pages belong to. A podcast is like a website. An episode is like a web page. I bet that the “Subscribe to a podcast then listen” model will change. Listeners will search & find individual episodes to listen, if there’s a podcast search engine that actually works.

Podcasters who would like to see their podcast on Listen Notes can submit a “missing podcast” form. Conversely, if you don’t want to have your podcast listed on Listen Notes, you can tell Wenbin (by sending an email to hello@listennotes.com). Your podcast will be removed within 12 hours.


Undark Seeks Creative Pitches for Undark Podcast



Undark Magazine is a non-profit, editorially independent digital magazine exploring the intersection of science and society. Undark is seeking creative pitches for the coming season of the Undark podcast.

The name Undark arises from a murky, century-old mingling of science and commerce – one that resulted in an industrial and consumer product that was both awe-inspiring and, as scientists would later prove, toxic and deadly. We appropriate the name as a signal to readers that our magazine will explore science not just as a “gee-whiz” phenomenon, but as a frequently wondrous, sometimes contentious, and occasionally troubling byproduct of human culture.

Pitches should fit within Undark’s editorial mission. They are looking for pieces with narrative and ambient sound captured from the field. By this, they mean ambient sound that is out in the world as opposed to pure interview pieces. They want a running length of 3 to 5 minutes.

Rates vary depending on the complexity of the project, among other factors, but typically range from $400 to $600. Undark encourages sticking to the time constraint so you’re compensated fairly.

Send your pitch to podcast@undark.org. Include a couple of sentences about your pitch, where/how you’ll incorporate field recording, and links to previous samples of your work.


WME Signs Panoply Media



The Hollywood Reporter appears to be the first to break the news that WME has signed podcasting company Panoply Media. WME is going to adapt Panoply projects into films, television shows, and live events.

Panoply Media was created by the people behind Slate’s award-winning audio network, one of the first podcast networks and still one of the most popular. Panoply believes that listeners want a place where they can easily find high quality programs from people and organizations they trust. Panoply creates programs that focus on news and politics, culture and lifestyle, sports, women’s issues, technology, business, and more.

WME was formed in 1898, as the William Morris Agency. It is the longest-running talent agency. In 2008, William Morris Agency merged with Endeavor to become one of the largest entertainment and media companies with an unparalleled list of artists and content creators. In 2014, WME acquired IMG, the global leader in sports, events, media and fashion, forming Endeavor.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Panoply announced a fall slate of podcasts including its first scripted comedy Dexter Guff is Smarter Than You, and the Sam Dingman-hosted Family Ghosts. WME has built up a large roster of podcasting clients in addition to Panoply. WME also represents Crooked Media (Pod Save America), Midroll Media, Two Up (Limetown), and Freakonomics Radio host Stephen Dubner.

On September 29, 2017, Panoply Media posted the news on their Facebook page. “Exciting news! William Morris Endeavor will partner with us to adapt our podcasts into films, television shows, and live events”. Panoply included a link to The Hollywood Reporter article.


Blue Introduces the Yeti Broadcaster



Blue microphones have helped the Internet’s favorite podcasters and YouTube stars take their projects to the professional level. Each Blue mic combines pristine sound with the inspiring design, versatility and performance found in the world’s leading studios. Blue has introduced the Yeti Broadcaster microphone. It is for podcasters.

The Yeti Broadcaster is designed to help you make the podcast you’ve been dreaming about. It is now available with Journalist – a powerful software application designed specifically for podcasting and broadcast production. The Yeti broadcaster microphone, bundled with Journalist software, is $199.00 (for a limited time.)

For years, podcasters have been searching for software that’s easy to use but not overly simplified, powerful but not overly complex. Journalist is the software we’ve been waiting for, and its now available with Yeti – the world’s #1 USB microphone. This limited bundle is only available on the Blue web store.

Hindenburg Journalist is a multitrack audio editor designed for podcasters, audio producers, and radio journalists. The design and features are tailored for spoken-word productions. Hindenburg Journalist’s focus is on storytelling.

Features:

  • Record voice and interview
  • Add sound and music by dragging any audio file into Hindenburg. Levels are set automatically in Hindenburg.
  • Organize the material with Hindenburg’s unique clipboard
  • Edit the story with Hindenburg’s editing tools and adjust the sound with Hindenburg’s Voice Profiler
  • Hindenburg has a Publishing tool that lets you upload your podcast or share it on Libsyn or Soundcloud. Once you have set it up, you can publish with a single click.

Patreon Raised $60M in New Funding



Patreon announced that it has raised $60M in new funding. CEO of Patreon, Jack Conte stated on Medium that Patreon will use that funding to scale their team, to build faster, and to build more. In other words, the money be used to help Patron’s product evolve.

Many podcasters use Patreon as a way to raise money so they can continue to podcast. It costs money to keep your website hosting going. Patreon is also a good way to deliver special content to your superfans.

TechCrunch reported that Patreon raised $60 million led by Chris Paik at Thrive Capital, which also led Patreon’s Series B funding. According to TechCrunch:

The new capital will go towards hiring to expand its 80 person team and scaling up growth by recruiting more creators including videographers, political pundits, game developers, illustrators, musicians, and comedians.

Here’s what Jack Conte says you can expect as a creator on Patreon:

  • Analytics for understanding your patrons, your rewards, and your income
  • Dashboards that summarize the performance of your membership business and give you clear and helpful suggestions
  • Rock solid and simple financials
  • Rewards management, automation, and delivery
  • Patron management (Who are my patrons? What are their Twitter handles? How much have they spent on me?)

In addition, there will be changes that will give creators everything they need to entice and keep their patrons. The idea is to make offering and fulfilling rewards or benefits to be seamless. In the Medium post, it says “We segment rewards into three main categories.” Those categories are:

  • Creator-patron intimacy, like live interactions and patron-only polls
  • Ongoing exclusivity, like access to a patron-only Discord server or early-access to content
  • Actual goods, whether digital or physical, like a signed poster or an extra episode