Why podcasting is valuable

Someone tweeted this today.

Now it’s unclear if this person was serious or attempting to craft a clickbaity tweet. In any case, I responded by offering my perspective on a more positive note.

This got me thinking more generally about the value of podcasting and would like to share some of those views here.

Podcasts are among the most accessible learning tool known to humankind. Most podcasts are free which makes them widely accessible to anyone with an Internet connection. Not only that, they provide a learning opportunity for every socio-economic class. Before podcasting, access to learning was limited to those who had time to read or attend some form of educational institution. This time just isn’t afforded to the poor who often spend much time commuting to and from work.

The growth of podcasting allows the underprivileged and the disadvantaged to transform idle time into time learning. They may even utilize time at work to learn. For example, a laborer in a field or a truck driver can listen to podcasts all day, maximizing what would otherwise be lost time.

There are podcasts for just about every area of human interest, and from all over the world. Think about this, someone on the Mongolian steppe can spend their days listening to one of the world’s leading astrophysicists, Neil Degrasse-Tyson if they so choose. To me, podcasts are a powerful education equalizer.

Podcasts also provide an open platform for anyone to express ideas in a free and censorship-resistant medium. Producing a podcast can be as easy and low-tech as speaking into the voice recorder app of a phone. And distribution is widely accessible and free. There is no one podcast platform to ban a podcast from distributing its content and distribution is direct, from podcaster to listener. In this sense, podcasts are democratic and resilient.

I’m only scratching the surface here but it’s clear that podcasts provide enormous value.



Host of The Interop and Epicenter. Founder of Interop Ventures.