On Podcasting and Openness

The NYT published an article yesterday about a handful of anonymous big name podcasters meeting with some Apple execs to talk about the state of podcasting. Immediately afterwards, some non-anonymous big name podcasters expressed their concern that transforming podcasting into a data-driven walled garden would not be a good thing.

I love podcasting. I love the openness and approachability of it. And I love the community, tools, and culture that is growing up around that openness. I don’t want to see podcasting turned into the clickbait mess that most blogging has turned into.

From to the NYT article:

Apple’s conservative approach may be creating an opportunity for competitors, as has happened before. Apple’s iTunes software helped popularize online music, only to watch streaming services like Spotify and Pandora create compelling alternatives. Apple pressured the television and film industries to sell, and rent, their content online; then Netflix built subscription streaming into a business worth nearly $40 billion.

This is obviously a gross over simplification that gives Apple entirely too much credit, but the message is clear, and I don’t think it’s the one the author intended: openness and competition in these spaces is a really good thing.

And while I’m sure Tim Cook buys all his movies on iTunes, I’d be willing to bet he has a Netflix account too.