I enjoy listening to podcasts because it is convenient (I can listen to it on my phone at anytime and anywhere… usually when I’m in the car stuck in a traffic jam!). And I enjoy how creative story-telling can be with just audio as a driver.
I also enjoy creating podcasts, and my brother, Aizyl Azlee, and I have two that we produce on a weekly basis. One on media and current affairs called ‘The Fat Bidin Podcast‘, and another on film called ‘The Fat Bidin Film Club‘.
But with all the passion that I have, I also realise that podcasts really haven’t caught on in Malaysia (unless it has and only my podcasts are the ones not catching on!!). But it has become a really big thing in the United States.
I stumbled upon an article on NiemanLab.org talking about Radiotopia from PRX, a collective made up of ‘podcast producers who are trying to build a shared audience and develop a business model for audio entrepreneurs’.
Only slightly more than a year old, Radiotopia has seen the number of it’s shows grow from seven to eleven and it’s downloads from 900,000 to 7.5 million. Astounding! They also expect to be making more money in sponsorships.
But for now, they will be receiving a grant of US$1 million from the Knight Foundation. The foundation also granted Radiotopia their initial funding of US$200,000 in February 2014 when they first launched.
Now wouldn’t it be great if a whole bunch of Malaysian podcasters got together and started a collective just like this? I wonder how many we can gather if there was actually an effort to do so?