Today’s Boston Globe is just one of many daily news outlets (like CNN.com and the U.K.’s Times) or weekly magazines (like BusinessWeek) to have broached the topic of podcasting. The Globe’s front page story pins the trend on flourishing sales of Apple’s iPod music devices. Somewhat like an audio weblog that users download to their iPod (or similar device) podcasting has also been called “TiVo for radio.”
According to the Globe, “If Internet-based weblogs turned everyone into a potential newspaper columnist, and digital cameras let them become photojournalists, podcasting is promising to let everyone with a microphone and a computer become a radio commentator.”
It can be done by corporations or motivated individuals. (When the word first came to our attention here, we thought, “Do CIO.com readers want podcasting?” Pardon our presumption, but we decided it was safe to wait awhile. Please let us know if you feel otherwise!) There are few mass-market podcast programs at the moment, but Boston’s public radio station WGBH says podcast segments of its show Morning Stories has grown 12,000-fold in two months (i.e., from five downloads to 60,000).
So podcasting may prick up CEOs’ ears for two reasons: opportunity and risk. If your organization provides information to customers, there’s a decision to make whether podcasting is an appropriate medium for that. Perhaps of more concern is the notion of the rogue podcaster. What might a careless employee say in the creative and egotistical rush of suddenly being a radio star (albeit with an audience of 120…or 12)? All of which means there’s yet another IT avenue to develop policy for.