PodCon2 will happen in January of 2019



PodCon2 will take place at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, Washington, on January 19-20, 2019. Tickets are on sale now. It appears the way to purchase a ticket is do it through the PodCon IndieGogo campaign.

Once you’ve purchased your ticket for PodCon, you can book a discounted hotel room at the Sheraton Seattle, located across the street from the Washington State Convention Center. PodCon recommends you make sure to book your room before December 17, 2018, to get the group discount.

Featured Guests include:

  • Adal Rifai – Hello from the Magic Tavern
  • Arnie Nickapm – Hello from the Magic Tavern
  • Bianca Zelda – The Broadswords
  • Carrie Poppy – Oh No Ross and Carrie
  • Cecil Baldwin – Narrator of Welcome to Night Vale
  • Dylan Marron – Conversations With People Who Hate Me; Welcome to Night Vale
  • Griffin McElroy – My Brother, My Brother, and Me; The Adventure Zone; Wonderful!
  • Hana Baba – The Stoop
  • Hank Green – Dear Hank and John; Delete This
  • Jeffrey Cranor – Welcome to Night Vale; Night Vale Presents
  • John Green – Dear Hank and John; The Anthropocene Reviewed
  • Jon Bernstein – Welcome to Night Vale; Alice Isn’t Dead
  • Joseph Fink – Welcome to Night Vale; Night Vale Presents
  • Justin McElroy – My Brother, My Brother, and Me; The Adventure Zone; Sawbones
  • Katherine Green – Delete This
  • Kristin Felmons – The Broadswords
  • Lauren Shippen – The Bright Sessions
  • Lelia Day – The Stoop
  • Matt Young – Hello from the Magic Tavern
  • Meg Bashwiner – Welcome to Night Vale; Good Morning Night Vale
  • Paul Bae – The Big Loop; The Black Tapes
  • Roman Mars – 99% Invisible; Radiotopia
  • Ross Blocher – Oh No Ross and Carrie
  • Symphony Sanders – Welcome to Night Vale; Good Morning Night Vale
  • Tracy Gibbons – The Broadswords
  • Travis McElroy – My Brother, My Brother, and Me; The Adventure Zone, Shmanners; and more
  • Victoria Rogers – The Broadswords

2018 Third Coast Conference will be in Chicago



The 2018 Third Coast Conference will take place on October 4-6, 2018, in Chicago. They can accommodate only 800 people, and recommend that you do not wait to register.

Join us in Chicago for three chock-full days of learning about the art & craft of audio storytelling from the field’s top makers, making connections with other producers/podcasters/reporters from all over the world, and discovering impactful radio & podcasting opportunities. And celebrate with us on the final night (October 6) with an Awards Ceremony honoring the winners of the 2018 Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition.

They have room for 800 people, and that includes presenters, volunteers, and special guests. They expect to sell out quickly. Once all the spots are gone, the only way to get a registration is from someone who needs to transfer theirs. The Third Coast Conference does not have a waiting list.

Your registration fee is non-refundable, but is transferrable up through Friday, September 28, 2018, at midnight.

The Conference begins on Thursday, October 4, at 1pm with an afternoon of meet-ups. The 2018 Conference officially starts at 5pm. It goes “pretty much non-stop” until Saturday night on October 6, with the Third Coast Awards Ceremony and after-party.

Participants are also encouraged to come to Chicago early and stay late to take part in Third Coasts’ lineup of live podcasts: The Fest. Join them for a live show as part of The Fest on Wednesday, October 3 (Conference eve!). Plus, there will be more Fest events on Friday Night and Sunday.

You can keep up with the latest Third Coast Conference news and announcements by signing up for their newsletter and selecting “producer news”. A more detailed schedule will eventually be released.


SpermCast is a Podcast About Finding a Sperm Donor



There is something about podcasting that influences people to reveal extremely personal things about themselves, their life, and their relationships. SpermCast is a podcast about one woman’s quest to find a sperm donor. The subject is one that very few people would openly share with total strangers.

Welcome to SpermCast, with actor, writer and comedian, Molly Harkey. She wants a baby. The only problem is she’s 39, single, and not exactly ready for motherhood. So she’s on a quest – a quest for a sperm donor, and a quest for some personal growth. Each week you’ll hear interviews with potential donors, but she’ll also seek guidance from the pros: doctors, financial advisors, tarot card readers…whatever it takes. By the end of this series, if all goes according to plan, she’ll find her donor and inseminate herself.

The trailer for SpermCast was released on April 30, 2018. It was followed by the first full episode, which is titled: “Sperm Contestant #1 – Brandon Barrick” and is described as “It Takes a Village”. The description is a reference to the phrase “It takes a village to raise a child”.

At the time I am writing this blog post, Molly Harkey has interviewed 7 Sperm Contestants, spoke with a single mother by choice, and talked with her girlfriends about money, stability, and her housing situation.

Women who are visibly pregnant might receive a lot of praise and well-wishes – from loved ones and strangers alike. But, women who are struggling to get pregnant may find that there are very few people they can share that experience with. SpermCast is going to reach women who are quietly going through the same thing that Molly Harkey is.


Entale is a Visual Podcast App



Entale believes that podcast standards are out of date. They feel that podcasts are difficult to share to your social graph, and they lack any form of contextual data or intelligence to share with you. Entale is here to change that.

We are combining the best of audio storytelling with the richness of the web, to create a platform that builds the next-generation podcast experience.

Our publishing stack allows creators to build rich and enhanced listening experiences, while our web and mobile user apps allow listeners to dive deeper into their favorite audio experiences.

Entale: The Visual Podcast app is available on the App Store. It is free, and is for iOS devices. At the time I am writing this blog post, it does not appear that there is an Android version of the Entale app.

For Podcast Creators:

  • Easy-to-use hosting and distribution tools
  • Multi-platform players and social sharing
  • Unique monetisation opportunities

The Entale website does not have any specific information about the unique monetisiation it provides to podcast creators. It does provide a form for podcasters to fill out if they want to see their content enhanced with Entale.

For Podcast Listeners:

  • Enhanced Audio: See the full story with rich contextual content that accompanies your listening for a deeper, more engaging experience. Put faces to voices, watch the trailer, see the murder weapon – no more pausing to search for what’s being mentioned.
  • Chapters: Episodes are split into chapters, allowing you to share compelling moments from shows you listen to, and to explore and discover new favorites. Share the bit that matters directly with our enhanced embed, which plays directly in your social feed.
  • All your favorite shows: Listen to your favorite podcasts enhanced with Entale, as well as our library of exciting new Entale Exclusive shows.

You can keep up with what’s new at Entale by reading their blog posts on Medium.


TalkShoe is Relaunching



TalkShoe is relaunching this summer at Podcast Movement 2018. Those who are attending Podcast Movement can visit TalkShoe there. TalkShoe may sound familiar to you – they have been around for a very long time.

Introducing the new and improved TalkShoe. We kept the good stuff, and added more – still 100% free: free storage, free live streaming, state-of-the-art administrative tools, and a new partner from which to stream: YouTube. TalkShoe is easier than ever to use, allowing you to connect seamlessly with others. Whether phoning or tuning in, use TalkShoe, from podcast to broadcast.

TalkShoe keeps all your data in the same place, so you can grow your following, brand, and business from a centralized platform, which conveniently offers 100% free cloud storage. TalkShoe says you don’t have to worry about losing valuable content. They will take care of moving all your existing files to the new TalkShoe with a seamless switch over.

The new TalkShoe gives you the option to chat with guests from around the world by combining virtual conferencing solutions and live dial-in phone lines, at no cost whatsoever.

With TalkShoe, you can:

  • Connect: Build a profile, build a following, build a brand, build your community, at no cost to you.
  • Record: Record online with the touch of a button and share your podcast via RSS feed, post it on your website, or save it for later.
  • Stream: Connect with your audience by streaming your podcast live and encouraging listeners to call in.
  • Store: Manage and save your podcasts with TalkShoe’s unbeatable cloud storage, for free.
  • Know your Listener Activity: Check your profile for reviews, comments, and connections from fellow casters.

Con Before the Storm will Include World of Podcasts



Con Before the Storm is a Blizzcon event by fans, and for fans. It takes place the night before Blizzcon, and includes guest “personalities”, podcasters, streamers, pro teams, artists, and fans across all Blizzard Games. Con Before the Storm has announced that this year’s event will include World of Podcasts.

2018 is the sixth year of Con Before the Storm. They held a successful kickstarter in order to raise funding for the event. One of their stretch goals was a $24,500 tier which, if raised, would enable Con Before the Storm to include World of Podcasts in the 2018 event.

World of Podcasts will include live panels with your favorite podcasters from across the Blizzard Universe talking about Blizzard games. They also have virtual panels as well, and the audio is always posted for consumption on your favorite podcast listening device.

At the time I am writing this blog post, Con before the Storm is in the planning stages of the World of Podcasts event. They are seeking people who produce a podcast that covers a Blizzard game who are interested in participating on a World of Podcasts panel.


Lawsuit Filed Against S-Town Podcast



S-Town is a very popular podcast. The show has won three Webby Awards (Best Series, Best Writing, and People’s Choice). It also won a Peabody award. Participant Media has acquired the rights to turn S-Town into a movie.

The latest news about S-Town involves a lawsuit.

S-Town is a podcast from Serial Productions and This American Life. It is hosted by Brian Reed. The S-Town podcast focuses on a man from Alabama named John who “despises his Alabama town and decides to do something about it.” John asked a reporter to investigate the son of a wealthy family who’s allegedly been bragging that he got away with murder.

The lawsuit against S-Town was filed by Craig Cargile, the executor of John B. McLemore’s estate. The suit was filed in Bibb County, Alabama. The lawsuit contends that McLemore didn’t give permission to broadcast the intimate details of his sexual orientation, mental state or other aspects of his life.

Forbes reported that Alabama passed a right-of-publicity statute.

It says that it is fair use (and not a violation of the law) if the use of a person’s identity “is in connection with a news, public affairs, or public interest account, political speech or a political campaign, live or prerecorded broadcast or streaming of a sporting event or photos, clips, or highlights included in broadcasts or streaming of sports news or talk shows, or documentaries, or any advertising or promotion of the same (public interest work), or is part of an artistic or expressive work, such as a live performance, work of art, literary work, theatrical work, musical work, audiovisual work, motion picture, film, television program, radio program, or the like (artistic work), or any advertising or promotion of the same, unless the claimant proves…that the use in an artistic work is such a replica as to constitute a copy of the person’s indicia of identity for the purposes of trade.”

The statute also says: “It is not a fair use and is a violation… if a person’s indicia of identity is used, without such person’s permission, in a manner stating or implying that such a person has endorsed or supports a candidate for public office.”

The Associated Press received an emailed response about this lawsuit from Julie Snyder (S-Town’s executive producer). She said that she could not comment on the litigation other than to say it “lacks merit”. She also said, “S-Town is produced consistent with the highest journalistic standards and we intend to defend against this lawsuit aggressively.”

The Associated Press also reported that the lawsuit asks for compensatory and punitive damages.


Skype 8.0 Allows Call Recording



Skype is rolling out an updated version of Skype (version 8.0) for desktop that will replace Skype version 7.0 (which is also known as Skype classic). Skype is encouraging everyone to upgrade now to avoid any inconvenience. Only Skype version 8.0 will work after September 1, 2018.

Many podcasters use Skype to record shows that include more than one host, or that include guests. The most exciting thing in Skype 8.0 is that it will include call recording. Podcasters will no longer have to use third-party software in order to record their show through Skype.

Everything about this new version, from the underlying performance improvements to the usability enhancements, is designed to keep you connected to the people who matter most. We built Skype version 8.0 based on feedback from our community – adding exciting new features while ensuring it’s simple to use with the same familiar interface of Skype version 7.0.

New features include:

Free HD video and screensharing calls: Get together with 1 or 24 of your friends, families, or colleagues no matter what device they use Skype on. See everyone in high definition, view 1080px video, and share things together.

More productive messaging: Express how you’re feeling by reacting to messages in conversations. Use @mentions to easily grab someone’s attention in a group chat. Simply type the @ symbol followed by their name to trigger a notification for them. You can easily find all your @mentions and get back to people in the notification center.

Share photos, videos, and other files: Share up to 300 MB at a time over Skype just by dragging and dropping files into your conversation window.

Skype version 8.0 rolling out on iPad: Features such as quoted messages, personalized themes, chat list, @mentions, and more are now available on the Skype for iPad experience.

Call recording: Take call snapshots to the next level with call recording. Capture a special Skype calls with loved ones or record important meetings with colleagues. Call recording is completely cloud-based, and as soon as you start recording, everyone in the call is notified that the call is being recorder – so there are no surprises. Call recordings combine everyone’s video as well as any screens shared during the call.

Private Conversations: Have end-to-end encrypted Skype audio calls and send text messages or files – such as images, audio, or videos – with the industry standard Signal Protocol. Messages and notifications in these conversations will be hidden in the chat list to keep the information you share private.


Tess is Now Available for Download



Tess s a free and easy podcast creation, hosting, distribution, and listening service. The app is now available to download on the App Store and on Google Play. The Tess team includes three people: Tony Faieta, Nick Ruspantini and Taylor Shrum. Tess is located in Gainesville, Florida.

How is it that we can upload 8k videos onto YouTube for free but creators are still charged for podcast hosting and distribution?

Weird, right? We thought so too. The dream is simple, we feel that in order to help move podcasts forward we must break the cost barrier and provide easy and free creation, hosting, and distribution to all creators.

Tess explains how they will make money: “We make money by having strong creators who align with our mission come onboard our products. We need attention, buzz, hype, love of our product, once that happens, not only do will we make money but so will our creators.”

The phrase “once that happens” implies that Tess is not, at this moment, in the position to pay the podcast creators who put their podcast on Tess.

There are four podcasts listed on Tess as “Active Shows”. The Best Ideas Podcast is hosted by Taylor Shrum, who uses the tool of conversation with guests to analyze ideas that influence us today and have been valued across time. There is a link on the Tess website that brings you to Apple Podcasts.

IDK Podcast is described as: “There is something about a podcast studio that can make four friends feel the need to record a conversation about the things we want to talk about with each other. IDK is just that, a podcast where four friends dive deep into their favorite thoughts and opinions about their favorite and least favorite topics.” There is a link on the Tess website that brings you to Apple Podcasts.

Green Light Sports is described as: “Green Light Sports talk offers inside looks at all things sports, offers different perspectives on the hottest currents events and sports and aims to entertain whilst focusing on all of your favorite facets of the game.” Best of Gainesville Weekly has a “placeholder description.” Both of these podcasts appear to have a link that will take you to Apple Podcasts, but when you click on it, nothing happens.

Tess is clearly a new product, and is in the process of building itself up. I haven’t been able to find any clear information about what advertisers they are working with. Perhaps Tess can add that important information to its website in the future.