We've all been around long enough to remember when the internet was new. I can still remember the first place I had routine access - it was the summer of 1996 just before Mrs. TriSec and I were wed. I was hand-picked to be a part of a special project team at ol' Harvard Community Health Plan, and we were the first department in the entire company to have internet access.
It took a while to figure out what to do with the thing - but when I finally got access at home, one of the first things I happened to get into was something called "podcasting". Oh, I never made one, but I listened to an awful lot of them back during the "aughts". The BBC had good ones. I remain internet acquaintances with a West-Coast musician by the name of "Anji Bee
" because of her podcast. I was even part of a differently-winged podcast called "East Coast Conservatives" as their 'token Liberal', and was actually pleased to be called a friend of the show.
But like all things, it felt like podcasting had gone through a life-cycle. The last one I routinely listened to was "Baseball Tonight" from ESPN, which is still produced today. But when I stopped working out in Worcester and no longer had a long commute, my podcast-listening opportunities began to wane.
So - while I miss baseball, and Anji no longer routinely puts out a "Chillcast", I still listen on rare ocassions when I have the time and opportunity.
So imagine my surprise when earlier this year, I started hearing ads for Podcasts all over my local airwaves. (WBZ Radio). There's even a seminar this weekend, hosted by the station, which is billed as everything you need to know about podcasting as a business opportunity.
But listening to those ads - all this podcasting going on all of a sudden is all under the auspices of "iHeart Media", which as we should be aware is the former Clear Channel.
What this means is that the right-wing noise machine has finally figured out what to do with podcasts, and probably more importantly, how to make money off them.
Methinks this doesn't bode well.