Issue 287,  published January 5, 2021

Tracking: January 5, 2021

Selected Notes…

  • The team behind Breaker, a fairly nifty third-party podcast app that’s been around for a few years now, is joining Twitter, and the app is shutting down.
  • I have been informed that Bean Dad drama is technically a subset of Podcast Drama, given that the aforementioned Bean Dad is a prolific podcaster.
  • ICYMI: the Duke and Duchess of Sussex dropped their holiday podcast special on December 29, exclusive to Spotify.
  • Speaking of Spotify… From Variety: “Spotify’s Podcasting Problem: Loophole Allows Remixes and Unreleased Songs to Hide in Plain Sight.” Again: YouTube-style ambitions, YouTube-style challenges.
  • From South China Morning Post: “China’s podcasters wary of censors as popularity grows.” I’m keeping an eye on this, given my general frustration with how podcasting in China has been discussed in the past.
  • Here’s something interesting: Kerning Cultures, a podcast network based in the Middle East that we wrote about in 2018, has launched a fiction podcast that it’s calling an “Arabic immersive thriller.” The show is called Saqr’s Eclipse, and it’s out now.
  • Sweet dreams, KCRW Berlin.
In tomorrow’s Servant of Pod By The Book’s Jolenta Greenberg and Kristen Meinzer are on the show this week. The hook, of course, is that it’s the New Year, which typically brings with it New Years’ resolutions, which is something neither I nor the By The Book duo put much stock in.

In any case, I just figured it was a good time to highlight By The Book, which is a show I really enjoy. If you’re unfamiliar with the show, every episode sees Greenberg and Meinzer pick a different book from the self-help section and live by its tenets for two weeks, after which they evaluate just how useful these books are anyway. As you would probably expect, only some are actually useful, most not so much. Either way, I really enjoyed talking to Greenberg and Meinzer about self-help books, who tends to write them, and what kinds of books in this genre are actually helpful.

You can find Servant of Pod on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or the great assortment of third-party podcast apps that are hooked up to the open publishing ecosystem. Desktop listening is also recommended. Share, leave a review, so on.

Oh, speaking of which. I had the pleasure of doing a bunch of audio spots last month to talk about the ~Year in Podcasting~. Here’s me on Minnesota Public Radio, on Nerdette, on All Of It with Alison Stewart

… and on Fresh Air, where I put on my best Justin Chang impression.

I run this thing.