Can you hear me?
: I’m starting to see/hear more good audio work from audio amateurs on the web.
It’s very much in the style of Ira Glass on NPR’s This American Life: Let people narrate their own stories but make sure it is told as a story (not a ramble).
Transom.org — which features Glass right now — does a good job of telling you and me how we can create such online radio ourselves. And it has some of the radio that has resulted; I listened to a report about a German rider lawnmower race, also good.
Now that I have my iPod, I was hoping to hear more Chris Lydon interviews but, unfortunately, his work is now streamed instead of downloadable. Which leads me to a minor rant:
Why can’t we download all of NPR?
: I don’t understand why NPR streams most of its programs or sells others via Audible (about whose product and customer service I’ve had a few minor rants as well).
Of course, I understand why record companies don’t want songs downloaded; they want to sell records. I understand why, say, Stern doesn’t want his shows streamed or downloaded; he doesn’t want to undercut his syndication.
But isn’t NPR’s mission to reach the largest possible audience? Why not make all shows downloadable? It’s not as if that would undercut advertising revenue; they have none. It’s not as if they’re making a fortune from Audible; I can’t imagine they are (or they’d be offering more shows there).
In fact, I’d bet that if NPR made all its shows available for download as MP3s — freely shared — it would increase not only its audience but also its donations: More grateful listeners means more bucks, no? And by making shows available for download instead of streaming and allowing them to be shared (or BitTorrented), NPR would save a fortune on bandwidth. Can’t lose.
So open the gates, NPR, and let us listen: MP3 it!
: UPDATE: I had mislinked to Linda Blake’s site. It’s here.