The Conversations of PRX’s Podcast Privacy Symposium


PodMov Daily: Friday, March 20

Episode 167: Week Download Complete

The Conversations of PRX's Podcast Privacy Symposium

Blake Eskin of PRX has shared essential notes, quotes, and video from PRX’s Podcast Privacy Symposium. Last month, more than 100 podcasting and tech professionals gathered at The New School in New York City to discuss what the future holds and how to meaningfully prepare for invasive pressure.

PRX’s CEO Kerri Hoffman set the tone in opening remarks, emphasizing the symposium title, “Emerging Threats to Podcasting’s Open Ecosystem.” Eskin conducted the day’s keynote interview with Manoush Zamorodi, the incoming host of TED Radio Hour.

Zamorodi is a journalist, author, and podcaster known for Note to Self and ZigZag. The latter show documents the recent launch of her media company with Jen Poyant, Stable Genius Productions. Eskin’s post includes video of the entire keynote conversation, plus several key panels.

The Case of The Missing Hit: The NYT on That Reply All Episode

Released on March 5, the Reply All episode “The Case of the Missing Hit” has become a viral delight, described by the Guardian as “perhaps the best-ever episode of any podcast.” Reggie Ugwu of The New York Times spoke to its creators about their compelling, twisting plunge into ’90s alt-rock.

The episode’s premise: “A man in California is haunted by the memory of a pop song from his youth. He can remember the lyrics and the melody. But the song itself has vanished, completely scrubbed from the internet.” (Reply All routinely solves fascinatingly personal mysteries. Just go with it.)

Ugwu shares “edited (and spoiler-free) excerpts from the conversation” with PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman, who “have made a specialty of exploring the strange and ineffable experience of life in the internet age.” Vogt and Goldman began their first podcast, TLDR, in 2013.

The Infinite Dial 2020: Findings from Edison Research and Triton Digital

The Infinite Dial 2020 from Edison Research and Triton Digital presents the latest figures illustrating change across podcasting. As awareness increases, so has habit: “More than one-third of Americans age 12 and over (104 Million) are consuming podcasts regularly.”

“This year’s study also continues the legacy of measuring developing technologies,” including growth in smart speaker ownership. Car manufacturers, too, are quickly adapting to audio demand. 18% of American adults now “own a car with an in-dash information and entertainment system.”

As creation flourishes, podcasts “are attracting an increasingly diverse audience,” said Tom Webster, SVP of Edison Research. “Also, with 62% of Americans now saying they have used some kind of voice assistance technology, audio is becoming a bigger part of our everyday lives.”

Happy Friday, readers, and sincere thanks for sending friends and colleagues to the newsletter. This is the last day to rack up those referrals ― the three with the highest number this week will receive a PM prize pack, and the top dog will score a free pass to PM20 or any future event!

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I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Stay bright: Amplifi Media CEO Steven Goldstein explains how “podcasts can truly shine” amidst uncertainty and isolation. The “best ones make ‘eye contact’ with their listeners” by developing “companionship, connection and authenticity” while remaining flexible.
  • To infinity: The Verge’s Dan Rosenbaum has tips for boosting your home Wi-Fi, from basic diagnostic tests to major overhauls like switching to a mesh network. Instructions include measuring speed and performing a bandwidth test to reveal ‘dead spots' in coverage.
  • Crypto trip: Anita Posch shares the experience of making the new, six-part documentary podcast series Bitcoin in Africa: The Ubuntu Way. Last month Posch traveled to Zimbabwe and Botswana “to listen, learn and record about the usage of bitcoin in these countries.”
  • Who knows: Jason Zinoman of The New York Times reviews Marc Maron's standup special “End Times Fun.” A long-reigning royal of podcasting, Maron seems to have replaced “old anger” with uncertainty and “a skepticism of unshakable belief of any kind.”

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