Step one of solving a problem? Spotting a problem.
Take the first item in this week’s Scan, which tackles a very basic problem with podcasting: We don’t know how many people are actually listening.
Without that number (or without a consistent standard for what a “popular” podcast is), advertisers, underwriters and trendspotter can’t accurately compare one show to another — or begin to understand how the digital/mobile/time-shifting audience fits into the larger universe of media.
Take a look, give it a think, enjoy:
• Listeners ≠ Downloads. Pete Davies reminds everyone why podcast metrics are a mess right now. Who’s sorting this out?
• ‘Stickup Kid.’ This doc about a boy who spent 13 years in prison with adults started as a longform film. Frontline’s digital team built a multimedia version to fill out the spots where video didn’t exist.
• Better Mousetrap. Designer/developer/SoundCloud user Evan Simoni proposes improvements. (N.B. SoundCloud is the No. 1 distribution platform for AIR’s network of producers.)