Podcasters Need to Learn from Ozy’s Downfall


PodMov Daily: Wednesday, October 13

Episode 519: Your Midweek Update

Podcasters Need to Learn from Ozy’s Downfall

Desperate audience-building tactics are rampant in podcasting. Amplifi Media CEO Steven Goldstein points to the collapse of Ozy Media to explain why — and what to look out for. Ozy promised “to vault you ahead of the curve,” which may sound familiar. Waves of new companies all want to project the same image.

“As podcasting has snowballed, creators, publishers, and advertisers find themselves competing for limited shelf space with escalating pressure on jammed social and marketing channels,” Goldstein says. Vanity metrics like subscriber numbers and ‘social impressions’ are powerful. They’re also easily manipulated.

While podcasters face fierce competition, they need to be aware of its effects all the way up the chain. Goldstein insists that trust shouldn’t be given blindly. “The real winners in our industry will be podcast companies with integrity and grace, even under pressure to ‘make the numbers’ without making the numbers up.”

Spotify Says It Won’t Allow “Inaccurate” Content

One word from CCO Dawn Ostroff says a lot about Spotify. Yesterday at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit, interviewer Kristen Bellstrom brought up Joe Rogan: “What is Spotify's strategy for dealing with this kind of issue, which I’m sure will come up again, when you have that many podcasts?”

Before describing investment efforts, Ostroff defended the hands-off approach. “First of all, there’s a difference between the content that we make and the content that we license and the content that's on the platform. But our policies are the same…and we will not allow any content that infringes or in any way is inaccurate.”

Rogan’s misinformation habit makes that statement, well, inaccurate. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek doesn’t believe the company has editorial responsibility for its podcasts, and Ostroff likely misspoke. Still, this calls attention to a huge policy gap that won’t solve itself. The rulebook is thin, and remains thin, by design.

For True Fans: Standup Comedy “Your Host & MC”

Every week on Your Host & MC, Scott Edwards celebrates 40+ years on the fringe of show business. It’s a podcast for true standup fans, with classic legends and fresh talent all on one stage. As a club founder, Scott shares the mic with the best working and retired comics.

Along with standup sets, you’ll hear interviews with the famous — and not-so-famous. Kick back with Dana Carvey, Jerry Seinfeld, Paula Poundstone, Bob Saget, and many (many) more, telling behind-the-scenes stories you won’t hear anywhere else. 

Episodes drop on Sundays, plus bonus shows every other week with fresh standup material. Ready to get back in the audience? Your Host & MC brings nonstop jokes from the greenroom to your living room. Listen, subscribe, and meet your new favorite podcast.

Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary: rationalize them, understand them thoroughly.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Day shift: A ‘New York Times Audio’ app is being tested as a “home for audio journalism,” reports Gerry Smith of Bloomberg. It features curated NYT podcasts, articles, and archives. Meanwhile, The Daily’s founding executive producer is leaving to launch her own production company.
  • Match box: Twitter Spaces’ new creator program, Spark, will take applications until October 22. The three-month social audio accelerator is open to established and experimental shows, reports Taylor Hatmaker of TechCrunch. Pay is $2,500 per month to run two Rooms each week.
  • Future tense: Sounds Profitable editor Bryan Barletta doesn’t speak Spanish, yet he’ll narrate the weekly podcast en español. How, exactly? Using text-to-speech and “speech-to-speech mapping” technology, a pro synthetic-voice service produces polished translations — in his actual voice.  
  • Look sharp: Unfortunately for new listeners, “the most recent episode you published may not be your best.” A greatest-hits showcase would make a stronger (and more accurate) impression, says Evo Terra in Podcast Pontifications. How can creators determine which ones make the cut?

Don't miss an episode of The Daily

Share With a Friend

About the Author


Join the Movement