Podcasts are audio files on internet.When clubbed together, it can be termed net radio,which broadcast off-live using the free net space provided by international players like Clickcaster,Podbean,Podbazar,E-snipes etc.
I owe it to Joe,whose M-Pod is the first podcast in Malayalam.Inspired by an article by him in Keraleeyam,a little magazine in Thrissur in 2006,I launched GREENRADIO in Sept 2007,in
clickcaster.com platform,which is defunct now.Presently it is available in Podbean;address http://greenradio.podbean.com.
Podcasts transcend the inherent flaws of existing broadcast media,which lack universal appeal due to its geographical constraints.Even the Short Wave transmission fail to cover one third of the globe, whereas podcasts are omnipresent;universal.Podcasts are accessible to everyone through internet.It excels FM channels in quality of sound ;which is digital. Podcasts can be listened to instantly or later by downloading and saving them in computer.Feedbacks can be mailed or the audio be forwarded to friends at the click of a mouse.Therefore, traditional radio brodcasts and net radio cater to different audience.The podcasts cover those who are being left out due to geographical barriers.
Malayalam podcasting ,still at its infancy,has just crossed the single digit.Like blogs ,Malayali diaspora are the listeners of podcasts.Cut-off from the mother land,they turn to net radio/podcasts,nostalgically.Not so comfortable with the Malayalam fonts on the net,they are enthused listening their mother tongue.Content-wise , poetry/recitation outnumber otherones,followed by music and humour.
Out of about 20 podcasters ,noted singers Pradeep Somasundaran and Kallara Gopan have since been shifted to audio websites.The rest are mostly poets including Kuzhoor Wilson.Mine is perhaphs the only exception . I concentrate on audio skits and satires on social issues ,as I have been writing them for the last 5 years for A I R and print media.
Greenradio podcasts receive overwhelming response from all over the world,especially from the West.The visitors' stat shows that about 40000 netisons visited Greenradio podcasts during the past 7 years. .An average of 100 visitors listen to the podcasts on holidays.Half of them download the popular podcasts. Audio skits written by me,tops the list followed by recitation of popular poems .
Anybody can start podcasting on desktop using a headset and recording softwares like Sony Sound forge or Audacity,which is an open-sourced one.All audio files need to be uploaded in MP-3 format.Broadband connection is required for uninterrupted transmission and reception.
Malayalam podcasting are yet to enter the commercial era.Audio albums,especially Mappila songs,gazals,folk and classical music can be marketed on line through podcasts.
- My dream project is a weekly talk show or radio cartoons on current affairs,which will be satirical and humourous-black humour indeed!