Dan Gillmor says esentailly the same thing Adam Curry told the BBC a few days ago. Curry was talking about podcasting, the online radio equivalent of weblogs, when he said podcasting will kill the business model of radio. Gillmor's article suggests a similar shift will happen in the newspaper realm.
I agree that podcasting and weblogs will have powerful influences in toppling the traditional media business model. All too often, however, this is taken as an excuse for producing a poor quality product. Podcasts-a-plenty are full of folksy poorly produced blots of sound. Of the many podcasts that have at one time or another crossed my iPod the only ones that have stayed are IT Conversations, Career Opportunities and New York Public Radio's On the Media. All three share several things in common. Among them high production values and they are the right length. What is the right length? Long enough to cover the subject and short enough to keep it interesting.
I suspect I am not alone in that after the first "wow" factor wears off listening to someone who is not good at radio will loose its allure quickly. There is a reason Rush Limbaugh has a radio show. It is not his politics. There are conservatives behind every corner these days. The reason his show is on the air is he knows how to put together a good radio program. The same will be true of weblogs and podcasts. The good among them, those that find a stride and figure out how to put a professional polish on the product will likely replace many of the mainstays of the media machine. Read more about Changes