I’ve been thinking about podcasts lately. Not of actually doing them–I loathe the sound of my recorded voice, and I have enough of that I have to listen to when I’m prepping my lectures for assorted online classes–but I guess I’m wondering about how popular they are. I mean, I know they are popular. ITunes is covered with them. In our ipod/mp3 player world where we’d rather plug in than carry on a conversation with a real human being, people clearly listen to them.
Don’t get me wrong. I listen to stuff. Audiobooks all the time. Pandora. Occasionally the radio if I’m in my car at some other time than peak advertising hour. But lately I’ve noticed some of the blogs I read either offering a podcast version of the post or basically making a brief intro post saying what the podcast is about. I have never clicked to listen to the podcast. Why? Because I read really fast. I can’t make a podcaster speak faster. Part of my morning routine during breakfast and the morning bootup at work is to zip through my bloglines. I can usually tell my skimming whether I’m going to find a post interesting or useful, and I often skip stuff based on that.
I can’t skim a podcast. That’s more of a time investment than I want to make. There are no nice, highlighted key phrases to draw the eye from beginning to end that follow all the principles of good blogging (which I often don’t here). I’ve tried listening to podcasts before. Katie MacAlister does one, and I find her hilarious. I’ve still never listened to more than a few. Maybe that makes me an anomaly. I don’t like talk radio either. If someone is talking, I want to hear fiction (hence the audiobooks), otherwise, there better be music, darn it!
Q4U: So am I the exception or the rule? Tell me, readers, do you listen to podcasts?