Sunday, April 5, 2015

Why I listen to Podcasts (and you should too)

Dear Hashtag,

This is the first in a series of discussion on podcasts, including why I listen to them, my methods for listening to them, and my favorite podcasts, along with reviews, if I get that far. My current subscription list for podcasts is nearing 100, and I generally manage to get through the entire list about once a week or so, which is a lot of listening time, so I feel comfortable declaring myself an expert as a podcast listener. To start, here are my stats.

Current Stats:

Total Number of Episodes downloaded: 12
Total Playtime of downloaded episodes: 7:55:38
Total Number of Podcasts Subscribed: 91 (80 with episodes available)
Total Number of Unlistened Episodes: 8022
Estimated Time of Unlistened Episodes: 12139 Hours. Or 1 Year, 20 Weeks, and 19 Hours.
Podcast I'm in the middle of: The Tome Show

3 Reasons Why I Listen to Podcasts:

#3. Podcasts act as white noise. Particularly at work, podcasts allow me to ignore the office distractions, the pointless conversations, and the general noise and hubbub of the cubicle farm. When I'm doing something mundane, a good intellectual podcast helps pass the time without me getting bored and wandering facebook for the sixth time that hour. When I'm doing something that takes significantly more brain power, a music podcast or a topic I'm more familiar with helps me concentrate and focus on the task at hand.

#2. Podcasts make the commute go faster. While I try to read on the bus itself, I listen to podcasts on the walk to the train station, or from the bus stop to work, or down to the grocery store. In these moments I tend to prefer story oriented podcasts, or the stuff that is harder to concentrate on at work, like history podcasts or the faster moving trivia shows.

#1. Podcasts Educate! Podcasts Inform! Podcasts Entertain! Podcasts are, well, just plain awesome. Podcasts have all the advantages of radio, with a few extra to boot. They can be as long or short as the podcaster desires. They can be as foul-mouthed as they want, and can discuss topics which would never get past the censorship boards. They generally have far fewer ads, with most having one or two sponsors (although I can't even begin to explain how tired I am of hearing about Audible).

So that's why I listen to podcasts. Soon I'll have my top ten up, and then I'll probably start doing specific genres and discussing the podcasts I listen to within those genres. Mixed in with those I'll talk about the methods I use, the crazy ways I organize things, a full list of my current subscriptions, and more. If it lasts long enough, I'll start doing reviews of individual podcasts.

Thanks for reading,


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  2. But I can't listen to them on my car radio because it's not equipped for it. Sigh. And my smart phone has so little memory it can't do much extra. However, you come close to talking me into it. I know books on CD were the only thing that kept me at the encoding center for so long. Not to mention the commute...currently going through October 2014 conference talks again while I wait for the new ones. But hey, when you start listing them, will you star the foul-mouthed ones? 'cause, you know, Momm's kinda picky about that.