The Last Archive: Jill Lepore Podcasts the History of Truth


PodMov Daily: Friday, June 12

Episode 225: Week Download Complete

The Last Archive: Jill Lepore Podcasts the History of Truth

Jill Lepore, the David Woods Kemper Professor of American History at Harvard University, is obsessed with radio drama. Her new (and first) history podcast is The Last Archive, a show about the history of knowledge, produced in that distinctive 1930s style. Colleen Walsh of The Harvard Gazette spoke with Lepore about the process.

Often approached about podcast projects, Lepore finally said yes to Jacob Weisberg and Malcolm Gladwell’s Pushkin Industries. “A former senior thesis advisee of mine, Ben Naddaff-Hafrey, did his Hist & Lit senior thesis on Orson Welles and War of the Worlds and the psychology of radio in the 1930s,” Lepore said. They kept in touch and are now podcast partners.

“It’s not like a true-crime podcast that is trying to solve a conventional crime, like who killed somebody,” Lepore says of the first season. “It’s an old-style radio whodunit, where the mystery is who killed truth.” With records from archival tape to YouTube videos, The Last Archive is the first of its kind in America’s self-documentary.

David Ruddock: How Spotify Deals are “Ruining the Podcast Experience”

Android Police managing editor David Ruddock really loves Last Podcast on the Left. (Your editor does as well.) However, the enormously popular horror-themed comedy show migrated to Spotify in February. Ruddock offers an honest take: “I support creators hustling corporations for cash, but Spotify is ruining the podcast experience.”

Ruddock’s well-reasoned argument comes with full support of the podcasters in question. It’s Spotify’s ‘fly trap' of invasive advertising and distraction that has made him inadvertently listen less often. Aggressive promotion of the company's own shows is successfully increasing downloads and further impressions. But the practice “is, to use an industry term, an engagement issue.”

In light of the Joe Rogan exclusivity deal, it seems inevitable that millions of podcast listeners will soon find themselves in the same boat. “Like Netflix, Spotify doesn't want to be a big, easily navigated list without any unnecessary distractions or promoted content,” says Ruddock. We all just want to tune in and connect, which RSS freely provides.

Spreaker’s Publisher Plan: Large-Scale Podcasting, Solved

It’s no secret that podcasting is essential to the marketing strategies of thousands of publishers. With Spreaker’s new Publisher Plan, enterprises and networks have a truly customizable solution for managing and monetizing massive amounts of audio content.

Spreaker’s popular enterprise level plan raised the bar in 2019. Now, the Publisher Plan offers a truly turnkey solution to the challenges of large-scale podcast operations. With a pay-as-you-go pricing structure and no download limits, it’s a complete platform that thrives on flexibility.

With Network Collaboration, users can extend higher-level permission to teammates involved across the network’s shows. The Organization feature gives one admin the power to bring every Network under one account, while maintaining different admin levels and permissions. Plus, Ad Manager makes it simpler to fully monetize your audio across all networks.

Publishers have specific needs — Spreaker specializes in solutions. Ready to find yours?

Remember there's no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.

Here's what else is going on:

  • Toast proposed: George the Poet has won a Peabody Award for Have You Heard George’s Podcast?, the first British podcast to receive the global media award created in 1941. Among other accolades, it also won 7 titles at the 2019 British Podcast Awards.
  • Mystery machine: Apple has removed Pocket Casts from the App Store in China, reports Sam Byford of The Verge. The Cyberspace Administration of China claims the app can be used to access “illegal” material. Castro was also pulled last weekend.
  • Film strip: Zencastr is testing a video podcasting tool in limited beta, reports Brian Heater of TechCrunch. The company is working toward a dedicated platform for prepackaged video shows. The beta will be free to start, and the waitlist is currently open.
  • Exchange rate: The podcast hosting platform Spreaker has announced integration with JioSaavn, South Asia's largest audio streaming platform. Over 104 million listeners will now have access to new content as India’s podcast consumption and creation rises.

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