Podnews Weekly Review

Podcast Search Optimisation, new IAB guidelines, and a special Aussie gift

March 01, 2024 James Cridland and Sam Sethi Season 2 Episode 63
Podnews Weekly Review
Podcast Search Optimisation, new IAB guidelines, and a special Aussie gift
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We talk:

  • Podcast Search Optimisation,
  • New IAB guidelines
  • Court cases, and lots more

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Speaker 1:

It's Friday, the first of March 2024.

Speaker 2:

The last word in podcasting news. This is the Pod News Weekly Review with James Cridland and Sam Sethi.

Speaker 1:

I'm James Cridland, the editor of Pod News, still here in Brisbane in Australia.

Speaker 3:

And sadly, I'm Sam Sethi, CEO of Truefans, back in the rainy wet UK.

Speaker 1:

Well, god help me. Sorry about that. In the chapters today podcast search optimization, new IAB guidelines, court cases and lots more. This podcast is sponsored by Buzzsprout. Podcast hosting made easy with easy and powerful tools, free learning materials and remarkable customer support.

Speaker 2:

From your daily newsletter, the Pod News Weekly Review.

Speaker 1:

So, sam, we didn't, we didn't give you anything exciting in Australia to take back to the UK with you, did we?

Speaker 3:

You know those Swifties. They couldn't leave me alone, could they? They had to give me Covid.

Speaker 1:

Oh, you got the Australian Covid.

Speaker 3:

Well, I got the Taylor Swift, covid. I don't know what's better or worse.

Speaker 1:

I'm sure it's not the Taylor Swift Covid, in case her lawyers are listening. I'm sure it's not the Taylor Swift Covid, are you? Are you mostly better now?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, it was the I've got. I did have all the horrible symptoms. I haven't had Covid up until now, so there you go.

Speaker 1:

So that was the first from Australia that you got. Yeah, thank you very much. No, it's our pleasure.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, the rest of the trip was very, very nice, but yeah, that was not me for six. Let's put it that way anyway.

Speaker 1:

Yeah well, the first time I got Covid was in Los Angeles, but I only developed it back in Australia. So, yeah, so I know I know what you, what you, what you're going through. It's not, it's not fun, that and jet lag. So, heavens, there we go, so it'll be a quick one this week. Goodbye, no, we were talking about Taylor.

Speaker 3:

To Taylor Swift's lawyers the stuff going on in the courts isn't there there is Now this has been an ongoing case that we've been covering, which is the National Association of the Deaf versus Ceres XM. It's a two year old legal case. It's basically about the National Association of Deaf saying that Ceres XM doesn't support transcripts. So, james, tell me more what's been happening.

Speaker 1:

Well, and I have to pay 20 US cents for every piece of paper that I download from this court case. So therefore, I'm enjoying paying ridiculously small amounts of money but still having to pay amounts of money for a public court case. Let me tell you. But what's been going on? Well, it's two years old so far, and the lawyers for the National Association of the Deaf are getting grumpy. They have been saying that Ceres XM didn't give them any information about its new app and they have asked for a further delay. They've accused Ceres XM of sandbagging, being incredibly vague and an effort to sabotage. Meanwhile, ceres XM's lawyers are furious and they say that Ceres XM had a new app on December the 12th, which they told the other side about within two months, and it does some transcripts now. And they say that the National Association of the Deaf are well they're a faint surprise acting improperly tenuous assertions, and these lawyers are also asking for a further delay.

Speaker 1:

Anybody would think that the lawyers are paid for by the hour, but yes, so all of that is going on. It's very tedious, it's very boring. So far as I can work out that Ceres XM app does have transcripts in it. I have asked them for comment and they haven't actually come back to me, but it does have some transcripts in it from Ceres XM shows. It's also got transcripts in there from the Daily, which is always interesting to see. No transcripts for most of the other podcasts in there, though. Meanwhile, of course, probably next week, apple Podcasts is going to roll out transcripts for basically everything.

Speaker 3:

Well, first of all, would you call a thousand lawyers at the bottom of the sea, james? A good start, exactly. And secondly, will it sounds like, look, ceres XM is just bagging for time? Clearly they are, so they can get a product out and say look, there you go, we've got it. End of story. Apple clearly have seen this in the background, so, as much as they have claimed to purport to support the podcasting to the O-transcript which they have, this is more to do with making sure that they aren't caught out legally, which then asks or raises another question James has an app developer, myself and other apps and hosts. Are we going to be liable if the case falls that every app needs to have transcripts? Are we therefore liable to support transcripts for everyone?

Speaker 1:

I mean technically we are, if you read the American Disability Act and the equivalence in other countries. Technically we're liable anyway. We should be giving them a little bit of a break. We're liable anyway. We should be giving transcripts of all of our shows anyway, because that's what the law says. In most of the cases. Most of the lawyers have gone after the big companies. I said two years ago when this started, I said it was a very clever plan from the National Association of the Deaf, because what they were doing is they were going after Ceres XM, who make shows but also have the platform as well. So they couldn't go to Apple Podcasts because Apple don't make shows themselves. They could go to Spotify, but they chose Ceres XM as an alternate and I thought that that was quite a good plan because at least we would get some very clear ruling as to where the transcripts should appear, how they should appear and all of that. But it does seem to be just an interminable set of foot-dragging from people who are paid for by the hour.

Speaker 3:

Well, that's clear, then. So to ask again as an app developer, should I be providing transcripts?

Speaker 1:

I think if you are an app developer, if you follow the letter of the law yes, you should I think the first step would be for you to turn around and say well, we can only provide transcripts for those shows which actually have transcripts in the RSS feed. So that would be at least a start. But I'm sure that you're showing transcripts in the Truefans app anyway, so I think that you're pretty well done there. This show, of course weeklypodnewsnet. You can have a look at every transcript on there as well. So I think we're probably OK.

Speaker 1:

But I think it makes sense for all podcast apps to have transcripts. That at least will show the transcripts available in an RSS feed. I think it's a little bit different what Apple is doing, because Apple is basically rolling them out for everybody, because they can afford that, because they can stick all of their stuff through a set of servers and all of that. But I think at the very least, if you are being fed a transcript by a podcast RSS feed, then you should be showing it, and that's why I'm excited that AntennaPod is busy working on making transcripts appear. That's a good thing. Transcripts appear in quite a lot of the podcasting 2.0 apps as well, and I'm rather hoping that we see more of those in the future.

Speaker 3:

Now moving on, let's talk about Apple. I do have a title for them, but I'll hold that off till next week, when I've seen what they've done in Europe. Apple have totally screwed. Small podcasts says what. How do you say?

Speaker 1:

Hank, hank. Hank from yes, let me try that. How do you pronounce Hank? No, it's the next bit. Gosh, the COVID's got you, hasn't it? Yes, hank Green, who presents a show called SciShow Tangents, which is very difficult to say, and, yes, it's a YouTube video, and he basically goes on. He makes some slightly strange assertions in there. One of the assertions that he makes is that when you skip an ad, then the advertisers know and they want their money back, which is not true, at least so far as I'm concerned, isn't true. I'm unaware of any podcast app which is feeding where people skipped back to, directly back to advertisers. I don't even think that Spotify is doing that. So, yes, I'm not entirely convinced about that, but I think he's absolutely right in that Apple has made changes and they were the right thing to do, and they have probably quite screwed things up for now, and that very much comes along after the story that I covered last week.

Speaker 3:

See, I don't think Apple have screwed things up. I think the only thing they screwed up is not telling people I think it's always been a dirty secret of podcasting. You know this? Oh yes, pay me for my third ad. Did anyone listen to it? Don't worry, we had loads of downloads. It's always been the emperor's new clothes and Apple just revealed that everyone was naked and basically not serving the industry properly and everyone's got oh really, oh damn, what can we do Apple, you bad people? Now, apple have done bad things, but in this case, I think they've done the right thing, which is basically reset the industry and said look, stop it. These are the correct number of downloads and tough luck if you've dropped your revenue by 17 million ACARS than everyone else. This is the actual industry We've reset to this bottom point. Let's go from here, yeah.

Speaker 1:

I think that's about right. I think it was the right thing to do. The numbers, by the way, that we're getting out of Apple still aren't right, because Apple does do an awful lot of auto downloads still. So we're still not getting the right numbers, but we are getting closer to the right numbers and that's a help. But I also think that it's accurate to say that many podcast companies have been a bit screwed by Apple, because they announced it three weeks after they put that new code into iPhones, and I think had they at least warned the industry that something was going to happen, then companies would have been able to plan for it. And I think that that's the point that Hank is making as well, in that it was a change. It was a change that wasn't expected, and it's a change that has actually meant that you're hearing twice as many ads as you used to hear in some cases. So yeah, so I think you're right and I'm right there. Good, if that's all right Now.

Speaker 3:

Apple appears to be removing suspicious five star ratings from some podcast. What, what an out-of-the-art joke.

Speaker 1:

Yes, now this is according to Daniel J Lewis, and he has been for his new engagement website thing. He has been spotting that Apple have been removing just those five star ratings that aren't that don't have a review attached to them, so they're just a rating and they've all been reviewed from, all been removed from one country. So you know, it's very clear that there is something a little bit weird going on. Lots of five star ratings, all from the US, all without any reviews attached. Probably to me sounds as if there's something a bit dodgy that's gone on with those ratings and Daniel spotted that and has spotted that the fact that Apple is taking those out. So perhaps that's good news for people who are trying to fiddle the numbers. I have to say I'm not sure that the ratings really mean anything to anybody, but yeah, but I think that that's probably a good plan.

Speaker 3:

Sadly, I do think they mean something to most people, james. I know they don't mean anything in the sense that you know okay, so it's got. But you know, when you go to Amazon reviews and you look at you know you do look at the reviews if you have no knowledge of anything the first thing oh that's, that's a five star rated podcast. Probably really good, maybe I'll give it a go, you don't. You do actually get a lot of people just using those as a barometer to say, look, yeah, I'll give that a go. If you've got load of one stars against the podcast, you're probably never going to listen to it, right? So there is a value to it somewhere. It may not be high value, but there is a value.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I don't think it makes podcasts more discoverable, but I think it does make them more trialable, and perhaps that's that's the thing, and that's the reason why some companies are going out and selling five star ratings for your individual shows. So, yeah, I will probably agree with that.

Speaker 3:

Now, what is this about? Motorola and your Android phone? Come on.

Speaker 1:

So I was setting up a brand new Motorola Android phone for my daughter actually over the weekend, and I noticed that, firstly, it comes pre installed with YouTube music. That's important because YouTube music is the new podcast app from Google, which is worthwhile knowing, so that's good news. Slightly worse news is that it also insisted on installing Google podcasts, which is is going to close this month in some countries. So why Google are still installing Google podcasts when they know that it's going away? It's a bit of a strange old thing. So I did spot that. I did think that that was a little bit weird.

Speaker 3:

Could that just be old Motorola code that's being thrown out the front door?

Speaker 1:

No, because the one of the first things that your Android phone does is it checks with Google whether or not it's got any updates downloaded all of those updates first, and then starts you through the setup you know process, so, and it only what it basically does once you've once you've typed in your username and password and all of that. It then goes okay, what, what apps have I got here to pre install onto this phone and? And so Google podcast is one of those. Also, I noticed TikTok was one of those which, for my 11 year old daughter, has been swiftly hidden. So so we won't be having that, but yeah, so I was just curious the fact that they were pre installing Google podcasts, because that seems a bit of a mistake from my point of view. But you know, talking about pre installing, of course Apple is just about to release, we think, ios 17.4.

Speaker 1:

The release candidate of that came out yesterday that's Wednesday my time and that's the version that brings transcripts to all of the podcasts. I think it has to be out by March the sixth, and I suspect it'll either be out Monday or Tuesday. That's what some of the news websites that are focused on Apple say, because that's when it when a new version of iOS normally comes out. So if you're interested in when you'll be able to see transcripts in the Apple podcasts app, then it's going to be that, and I would love to tell you some of my experiences with it. But I, as I've said before, I don't think it's fair until it's actually launched. Once it's launched, then we will be talking about whether or not their transcript service is actually working the way that we all want it to. But I think we should probably hold fire on that until they've actually launched the thing. Yeah, and if they've brought out what I think they're doing with the PWA.

Speaker 3:

I will be right into the EU very quickly. Yeah, I think Apple are just being evil and monopolistic. They don't have to break PWA, they're just simply going alternative way of actually running an app outside the app store break it. Yes, that's it, End of story. There was some evil Apple person sat down and made that decision. That is all I can say.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, no, I think it's going to be interesting to see quite what happens there with PWAs. This is PWAs in the EU. May or may not include the UK, I don't know, but because I think it's an EU law that was passed after the UK, I think after the UK left but who knows it?

Speaker 3:

doesn't really matter, does it? Because even if it is just purely the mainland of Europe, it's still an evil app.

Speaker 1:

It still affects? Yeah, of course it still affects you.

Speaker 3:

Three trillion dollar company and they can't be bothered. Can't be bothered to just let the little guy is creating a small app outside their little monopolistic store alone. Really.

Speaker 1:

Apple Really?

Speaker 1:

I mean, I think, I think I would, I would play, play Devils Averka and I know that some people say that playing Devils Averka is a bad thing now, but let's, let's, you know, let's have a look at the other side.

Speaker 1:

The other side is that they have been told that they have to use, that, they have to make available different browsers, and what they haven't been able to do in the time available is to make sure that all of those additional browsers work well with the, with the PWA code, and so they are a little bit stuck. They're not allowed just to put Safari on there, which would be the safest thing, but they but they also can't necessarily test Firefox in there and Chrome in there and everything else. And so I can, you know, I can see it a little bit from their side, but I also completely understand that for you in particular, it's a real frustration. I also use, I use a PWA on my, on my iPhone, which is called Panthe, which is a, which is a client for Mastered on, and it's a beautiful, beautiful thing and it's a PWA.

Speaker 3:

But you would never know, and so you know, I can imagine a lot of Europeans losing that and thinking what on earth is Apple doing, yeah, well look, okay, apple, if you're going to play the silly game of this, then I think that the EU should next go after Apple podcasts and make you, force you to have to give alternatives. If you're going to have to play this game, you should be able to have a carousel of all the other apps that are available. I don't have it because mine will be a PWA, but fountain pod verse, podcast guru should all be there as alternatives. Why should you be having this monopolistic control? You know we talk about RSS, right, james? We talk about RSS being an open standard that we all love and support and that we're 100% behind. We talk about HTML, we talk about JavaScript and then we all capitulate to a proprietary iOS and an operating system and a developer app and that a app store that we have little control over. I've heard so many developers going.

Speaker 3:

You know when I interviewed Jason from podcast guru, I want to make a change to podcast guru. You know this was when we were doing the anti-castello live stuff. I don't know if I'll be able to get the changes in in time because I have to wait for some week in Apple, in some unknown described box, to agree to tick some stupid box to say that my app's okay. Why are we capitulating to Apple? I don't get it. Produce PWAs and get rid of Apple podcast. Go with Google podcast, apple, and you will have my blessing. Sorry, I've had enough of them.

Speaker 1:

Well, there we are. I'm looking forward to you rocking a Google Pixel 5, Pixel 7, Pixel 8,.

Speaker 3:

Pixel 9, whatever, the Samsung Word 94 or whatever.

Speaker 1:

No, don't go for a Samsung. That's not a good experience, but, yes, it's a good hardware experience, not a good software experience. Let's move on. Yes, we better. Let's move on for the sake of your blood, your blood.

Speaker 3:

I blame it on COVID. I blame it on COVID, good Lord, good Lord, right. Well, I'm going to go and make a cup of tea while you tell me all about this one. The IAB Tech Club has released a new version of its podcast measurement guidelines for comment. Oh, this is where I get upset.

Speaker 1:

Oh good, go on then. Well, so this is version 2.2 of the guidelines. You've got until March the 23rd to try and send an email into the IAB. The last time that they opened up a new version of their podcast measurement guidelines, the email address that they used didn't actually work, which I managed to break as a story. So hopefully at least the email address will actually work and they'll just be removing your emails without reading them on the other side. But nevertheless, version 2.2, you would imagine talks a lot more about auto downloads. You would imagine, talks a lot more about streaming versus downloads and all of that sort of thing, but it does nothing of that.

Speaker 1:

The big changes, if there are any big changes, is that companies have to be clear whether they use a fixed or rolling 24-hour window for measurement. I mean, you know, if you were setting standards, you would probably say either use a rolling one or use a fixed one, but you can't pick and choose. But clearly this isn't a company who's producing standards, they're just producing guidelines. Secondly, a requirement to update safe IP addresses. For those you know, large corporations or universities, the requirement to update that safe IP address list is in these guidelines. I wonder who sells that safe IP address? Oh, the IP.

Speaker 1:

Thirdly, clarification that an ad can only be considered to be delivered if the overall episode download was valid, which is fair enough. And fourthly, a requirement for practices to be put in place to account for mass market technology changes and measurement reports, ie, if something changes, like iOS 17's auto downloads, then you should be able to notice that. I mean, that is literally what it is. So, as you can tell, I'm not a particular fan of them. I think that they've been very clever, sticking into the requirements that you have to update a IP address list that they sell and that costs thousands of dollars a year. I think that's a very clever plan, but I don't think it makes any change to the reliability of these download numbers at all you know a bit of a.

Speaker 3:

We will pay to get this certification so that we are in the club, so that people can say we're okay.

Speaker 1:

I mean, yeah, I mean you could say that, but there again, most podcast companies don't care and only five companies have undergone IAB certification in the last 12 months. Everybody should be doing it every 12 months, but only five companies have bothered Only 10 companies. Only five companies have bothered and 10 companies are only certified to version 2.0. So they're not even certified to version 2.1 yet. And another thing that I noticed on the IAB Tech Labs website is that a requirement to re-certify every year has been quietly removed.

Speaker 1:

I do not understand why we are giving this company money. I do not understand why we are backing this organization up. They don't care about podcasts. They don't frankly care, as is very clear care about measuring podcasts correctly. So far as I'm concerned, it's a big racket where they're trying to extract as much money as they possibly can from individual podcast hosts, and I do not understand why organizations such as maybe Sounds Profitable or the podcasting standards project, or someone isn't turning around and saying, no, iab, you have nothing to do with this and we actually fix it ourselves. Do not understand it. It's a big, big mystery to me. So, yeah, but anyway, march 23rd if you want to send an email in that. I mean when I sent an email in for version 2.1 of the guidelines. They didn't even bother replying. So you know, good luck.

Speaker 3:

Oh right, let's do some positive news.

Speaker 1:

James, I wasn't expecting that to be around, but it turned out to be around.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, no, I didn't expect mine to be either, but anyway, let's do some positive news, let's get back on the horse. Exclusive podcast host Usher has released its podcast search optimization tool for podcasts on all hosting platforms. Tell me more.

Speaker 1:

Yes, so they had quite a lot of people going to their webinars on podcast search optimization and they have a tool which they make available to their Usher customers and they have a apparently released that podcast search optimization tool for podcasts on all hosting platforms, so you don't have to be hosted with Usher anymore.

Speaker 3:

Moving on, Transistor has launched an AI speech-to-text transcription service, James.

Speaker 1:

Yes, this is pretty cool. They've done a very good job of this, launching it just in time for Apple Podcast, which is very clever. Very surprised that lots of other podcast hosts haven't even made a song and dance about their transcripts. Perhaps they're waiting until Monday, when, or Tuesday, when it's actually available. Maybe I'll be deluged with them, but these are all pretty cool.

Speaker 1:

It's got automatic speaker detection, like Buzzsprout's service does. A coming, by the way, justin Jackson tells me, is that it will recognize voices from a previous episode, so you won't have to type in Sam Sethi instead of speaker one all the time, as I have to do every single time that I do this. So that will be very cool, and it's linked to audio and the transcripts will appear on the transistor website and all of this. So it's all pretty cool. Everybody gets a go for free, which is nice. It will be charged, but it's charged very, very cheaply, and I think it's interesting seeing that they've actually used a company called DeepGram to produce their transcripts, rather than putting together something for themselves, just purely because it can then do voice recognition. It can do other things as well, and I think that that's quite an interesting plan. So, yeah, that's a smart thing, nice.

Speaker 3:

Now audio, not a company I know very well, but the company that announced an ad skipping podcast app last year, has announced a reverse stock split. The company's share price has dropped 87.5%. Sorry, I shouldn't laugh. Should not laugh. Sorry, that is not professional. The reverse split will combine 25 shares into one, thus increasing the share price to above the one pan required to remain listed on NASDAQ. It's currently trading at 16 cents, falling almost 20% on the news. Now, that's bad enough, but then, on the back of that, audia also launched an acquisition of Radio Streaming Mobile app, radio FM. If they can afford it, that says here closing the acquisition remains subject to financing and the acquisition cost, which is $15 million. The market didn't like that one either, and the shares fell a further 17% after that announcement. Who are Audia and what are they doing, james?

Speaker 1:

Well, who are Audia Exactly? I have to say that the stock price has now gone up. They've done that reverse split thing. The share price is now $3.26. So it's above the $1 that you need to be in NASDAQ for. But yeah, they're a company that you might remember.

Speaker 1:

At the end of last year, they announced an app called Fader which would automatically skip through the ads. Yeah, and so they were most upset. When I asked them pointed questions like what does this mean for podcast creators, they were most upset. They were going to go, going to come onto this and onto this show and talk to us. And then they turned around and said actually, we don't think that there's any benefit in us doing that. Yeah, probably not, but yes, so they have been selling an app for radio which allows you to skip past the ads on live radio, which is clever, and again, the radio stations earn no money out of that, so far as I can work out and now they're doing it for podcasts as well. It's just interesting seeing a company clearly not in the best of financial you know, a financial state, but doing some interesting things, I think.

Speaker 3:

Oh well, we'll see if they are still above $1 in a few months time.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think that'll be interesting to end up seeing. But there are some pretty good companies and some pretty good news coming out of the US. At the moment, the Leonardo media appears to be absolutely on fire. So they signed Meghan Markle. They've signed a bunch of shows from Earwolf. So Earwolf, which is a serious XM network. Earwolf appears to be imploding and even the co founder of Earwolf is now has now moved his show onto Leonardo media. So Leonardo media appears to be having an amazing time. And they've just made another signing of David Dukovny who, of course you'll know, was the was the lead actor that wasn't Gillian Anderson on X-Files, and he's doing a show called Fail Better, which will launch in May. What would be really good, sam, this is your, this is your thing, if you can manage. It is if you might be able to manage to get I don't know Jessica Cordova-Cramer. She's been on the show before. Do you think we can get her back? Sadly, yes, no, yes no, very, very much.

Speaker 3:

So. Ping Jessica and said, hey, would you come on and tell us all the great news and tell us what you're up to? And she kindly said yes. So I'm in contact with her PR people. I'm all firm up a date.

Speaker 1:

Excellent. Well, that's a fine thing and I believe that we have, I think we, we. We mentioned that we were going to get Greta from Pushkin on and she will be on next week, I believe, or maybe the week after, who knows.

Speaker 3:

No, next week. Next week is good. There you go.

Speaker 1:

All good. Let's have a look at some events and awards then, shall we? The International Women's Podcast Awards are open for entry, which is a good thing. Lots of events, as well happening. Art, the Sam what have we got coming up? Podfest Cairo is only this weekend, isn't it? Yes, so that's going on in Egypt.

Speaker 3:

We've got podcasting South by Southwest between the 8th and 15th of.

Speaker 1:

March, so that's good. Yeah, there's a bunch of different events going on there, including a big stage from Vox Media and a few other things as well, and then, of course, it's Evolutions by Podcast Movement 26th to the 29th of March, which I will be there. I should also tell you that there is another event. Let's find the other event. Let me grab it from my script here and paste it in there. There's an event happening in London on March the 20th. It's at City University of London. It's called Careers in Podcasting and the State of the Industry, and if you want to come to that, that would be fantastic because it's free and I'll be there. I'm one of the speakers alongside a bunch of others, so please do come to City University of London at that point. That will be a splendid thing. March the 20th. You'll find details of that at podnewsnet.

Speaker 3:

Finally, the Black Effect podcast festival is returning. I Heart Media and Charlemagne the God have announced the event. It will be on April, the 27th. Tickets are on sale now. Yeah.

Speaker 1:

He's not a real God. And the last one that I'm gonna mention is the podcast show which is happening in May. They've just released a tonne more information on that. One of the nice things is that there's going to be the Creator Village this year, which is sponsored by Spreaker, and it's basically a large space for creators. There's a studio in there, there's a business advice and feedback hub, there's a creator stage with talks in there as well. It's the first time that they've really properly done a specific area for creators. I understand talking to Jason, which I was yesterday that there will be.

Speaker 1:

You can expect to see more exhibitors this year at the podcast show London Less large exhibitors, but more exhibitors. So I would suspect that we will see fewer of those very large fancy stages and things like that, but we will see many more companies there and, to be honest, that's rather more exciting from my point of view. So, looking forward to that, you can save money if you buy your tickets before Monday, and if you want to save even more money, then Pod News 10, that's Pod News 1-0, will save money on selected passes, the more expensive ones, if you wanted to use that as well. So that's a good thing and I will be there and very much looking forward to it. And there are more events, both paid for and free, at Pod News virtual events or events in a place with people. If you're organizing something, tell the world about it. It's free to be listed.

Speaker 2:

Podnewsnet slash events the tech stuff, tech stuff On the Pod News Weekly Review.

Speaker 1:

Yes, it's the stuff you'll find every Monday in the Pod News newsletter. Here's where Sam talks technology. What have you got for us, Sam?

Speaker 3:

Well, let's start off first of all, james. With our friend over in Holland, barry he, at Pod Home, they've launched achievements and rewards. Podcast hosts who achieve certain levels will get money off on their next month's bill. I know that that's a really good idea. I like gamification and I think, yeah, anything that helps with podcast hosting and reducing that cost has got to be a good thing.

Speaker 1:

Yes, it's a very clever idea and I think Barry has done something clever there. He's also written a guide on how to do live podcasting, which is supported by a growing set of podcast apps, including Truefans. The company has its own streaming server and it looks as if he's done a pretty good job writing it up. So, yeah, if you've wanted to do a live podcast, I mean he did send me this information and then said sure, looking forward this is my Dutch accent, sorry, ok, show Schmock and a pancake. Looking forward for you moving over from Buzzsprout. And yeah, buzzsprout, our sponsor, we're very, very happy with that company. So, no, thank you, but thank you anyway, but yes, so that was very cool.

Speaker 3:

He actually did a live show last night and it all worked very well on Truefans, I can say. I don't know about other platforms. I assume it worked well on every other platform as well. There's no reason why not. But I did see it on Truefans last night and, yes, well done, barry, very nice. Now you need to explain this next one, james, because I don't know a lot about it.

Speaker 1:

Oh, yes, this, this was very cool. So a man called Spencer Walker-Fuchs I'm guessing he's quite posh with that name Spencer Walker-Fuchs Hello, anyway, he's built a little short, who knows. Anyway, he's built a very cool little thing. It uses a Raspberry Pi Zero and an e-ink display, an e-ink screen which basically sits there and every half hour or something goes off, checks some APIs, shows him how much he's earning on his crypto investment but, more to the point, shows him how his podcast is doing in terms of downloads through OP3.

Speaker 1:

And it struck me that, firstly, that looked very cool. It built a little case for it with a 3D printer. It looked very smart. You'll find it in Monday's pod news newsletter if you want to go and have a look at it. But also, it did remind me that there is a very clear and open API for OP3 download numbers for your podcast. There is not a API at all for Apple podcast download numbers Close proprietary platform, close proprietary platform and there is not a API that is available to the likes of you and me for Spotify. I believe that there is for podcast hosting companies, but not for the likes of you and me. So I did just think well, that's interesting. The only way that Spencer Walker-Fuchs has been able to produce this lovely little E-ink thing is because OP3 has an API, and I thought that that was a pretty cool thing, so yeah.

Speaker 3:

I did see the screen image of it, so have you bought one?

Speaker 1:

I have not. I don't think. I think he's made the code available on GitHub, but yeah, but you'd need to buy lots of things. I am and blaming Gene Bean for this. I am currently doing various things with home automation and I've got my home assistant box and goodness knows what else, and I'm busy fiddling around with that.

Speaker 1:

I switched electricity supplier last week, sam, just for this. Well, because instead of usual electricity suppliers who charge you a certain amount of money per amount of electricity that you use that's not how electricity suppliers are actually charged for electricity Electricity suppliers are charged with a five minute price that changes, and sometimes that price can be as low as $0.02. Sometimes that price can be as high as $5. It's massive, massive changes. And so I'm with this electricity company that has APIs coming out of it all over the place, but basically it tells you you pay for the wholesale price. So if it's $0.02 during the day, well great, you get it at $0.02. If it's, I think it went up to $7.00 half an hour ago and yeah, and you turn everything off and you make sure that you don't use everything. And so I've done that and I've bought a fancy colored bulb, colored light bulb. I've got a couple of those, and so one of those will be in the kitchen and one of those will be in the laundry. Basically, when that light bulb goes red, don't turn anything on.

Speaker 3:

It's going to be my plan. I love it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I'm looking forward to it. So that's a little plan for the weekend when I should be doing other things. But yes, there we are. Anyway, finally, we're doing a podcast, aren't we? Yes, back to this. You mentioned a thing called Fountain Radio. Is that anything to do with our friends at Fountain?

Speaker 3:

It is indeed. Yeah, they sent out an email. Yes, they're saying Fountain Radio is a community radio station for music powered by Bitcoin. Discover new music, support the artists directly, cue your favorite tracks and chat to other listeners. So it looks like they're taking music from Wave Lake, from LNB, to another places. They're creating a cue and then you can run that cue all day long if you want. So nice little feature. Well done, I thought that was very clever.

Speaker 1:

Very cool, very cool, excellent. I'm wondering when my email went there. It would be nice to have learned a little bit about that. But no, that sounds very cool. And why not? I mean to make a live radio station using that payment mechanism. Wow, that's a really interesting idea.

Speaker 2:

Boostergram, boostergram, corner, corner, corner on the Pod News Weekly Review.

Speaker 1:

Yes, it's our favorite time of the week. It's time for Boostergram Corner. This is where you support us, sam and I do this show as a separate thing to the rest of Pod News and Sam and I share everything, and that means that we can occasionally buy beers and things, and that's a jolly good thing. So we've got a bunch of sats 1,000 sats from Adam Curry, the Podfather himself, sent to the Pod News Daily Because we read out the boosts for that show as well here. And he says in the Pod News Daily loving the chapter art boosts, which is exciting, because I was unaware that the Pod News Daily had any. So I think that that is John Spurlock's clever relay thing, which I know that you hate, sam, but I think that's that one.

Speaker 3:

No, no, it's going to be fair. It's going to be fair. John's done something very clever. He's just put it in the wrong place. I don't want it in the chapters, I want it in the boosts it. Just it mucks up the UI. Ooh, it's the right, cool thing to do. It's just in the wrong place. Adam likes them and so we don't support it.

Speaker 1:

Well, there you go. What can I say? Move on. It's also sent something else, hasn't it?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I know, I mean you know. Let's read this out the Overcast. Marco supports the 2.0 project with $500 per month. We know that Uses the index and also contributes to it. So we have synchronized and up to date. Both Dave and I appreciate his time, talent and treasure and I'm confident he will eventually start adding features as competition from more rich feature apps. Great, I'm sure he will. All I was saying was when people say that the app, this is nothing to do with Marco's support of $500 a month, there's nothing to do with synchronization. This was purely why or when will he start support the tags features. And that was all it was, and I was calling it out. I'm saying we can't call out people like Libsyn for not doing it and then give leading apps he's got a high market rate percentage and then say, oh, but Marco gets a free pass. And all I was saying was when's he going to do this? That's it.

Speaker 1:

I think fair enough. Kairyn from the Mere Mortals podcast, your new best mate sent us a row of Richards. Thank you, kairyn, for that, and he says pleasure meeting you, sam and seeing you again. James, how was the Taylor Swift flight, sam, are you a Swifty now? Yes, because when you were in Brisbane last week, you then flew down to Sydney on the flight with lots of Taylor Swift fans. Were there lots of pink cowboy hats and all of that kind of thing?

Speaker 3:

It was like Barbie had gone, come alive in front of me.

Speaker 1:

Yes, I love the greatest I was I was?

Speaker 3:

yeah, I was. I was fully waiting for singing and dancing in the aisles or something else, but no, noise counselling. Headphones are the future. Thank God for them. No, and Karen, just saying thanks for the T-shirt. I did actually climb the Sydney Bridge the next day with your T-shirt on, so I'll send you the photo. Very good.

Speaker 1:

Angie recorded this very show last week with that T-shirt on as well. I seem to remember.

Speaker 1:

So yes, there you go A thousand sats from RW Nash. Now, this time last week, RW Nash sent us a thousand sats with the message Thank you. This week, RW Nash has sent us one thousand sats with the message Thank you again. Thank you again. That's very kind. Yes, no idea why, but that's very kind of you, Matt Cundle. Five thousand one hundred and fifty sats. Thank you, gentlemen. He says this is, this is a new plan. I'm liking it. In fact, Matt ended up. He's been making jingles and things and I'm assuming that I'm allowed to play this. Here's his kind of hoping this podcast supports podcasting 2.0.

Speaker 2:

So feel free to send us a boost if you're listening with a new podcast app. If you don't have one of those new podcasting apps, you can get one now at podcasting 2.org slash apps.

Speaker 1:

It's fancy, isn't it? Nice, and that's Matt himself doing that. Well, he's got a great voice. He does have a great voice. He should be in radio, shouldn't he?

Speaker 3:

Well, yeah, I've always said to him loads and loads of times Matt do radio.

Speaker 1:

So, yes, that's a very good thing, and my understanding is he's going to be making those available for anybody to use if they want to.

Speaker 3:

Genebean Centres are one, three, three, seven, seven. I don't know if that's oh, is it?

Speaker 1:

OK, yeah, great, it's a lead boost.

Speaker 3:

Thank, you, gene. Thank you very much. I too wish Marco would add 2.0 features to overcast. Is otherwise such a good app. Yeah, well, you know complexity and simplicity. We'll see, yes.

Speaker 1:

I agree, and also a row of ducks from Genebean. Apple Maps used to be rubbish here in the US too, but it's quite good now. He says hmm, yes, I've been sort of flicking between Apple Maps and Google Maps on this iPhone that I have and, yeah, I think I'm still a fan of Google Maps, although Apple Maps makes you Apple Watch sort of make sort of funny sort of noises when you when it's time for you to turn, which I quite like, but anyway, and then we've got a 1000 sats from Andrew Grummit.

Speaker 3:

No iOS PWAs in the EU.

Speaker 1:

Oh, don't get in going again, andrew. We nearly, we nearly got away with that If it wasn't for you. So what's been? So what else has been happening for you then this week, sam?

Speaker 3:

Well, apart from my swifty covid, one of the things we've done is we added activity streams, privacy controls, this week to Truefans, which I think is quite a big thing. What it means is, at the moment we use activity streams to track every user's activity and we've got 30 verbs, so play, follow whatever, boost, and up until now it's all been public and you know. You can go and look at someone's profile and you can see their activity and go on to another person's profile, etc. So the privacy controls are. Now you can turn it off and say no, no one else but me can see my own activity, or I can choose which of verbs I want to be public and which of verbs I want to be private, which is, again, I think, a very important step, allowing people to control their own data. It means that when you become a fan of a podcast, it also allows you to say what data you share with the podcast host. So, again, giving you total control, and that's what really the W3C standard activity streamed, an XML format allows you to do.

Speaker 1:

And are you able to mark individual shows as incognito shows or guilty secret shows?

Speaker 3:

Explain. So you don't want? Yes, so if you don't want someone to know that you've played a certain show individually, yes you can.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so I'm absolutely cool with everybody knowing that I listened to the pod news weekly review. I may be less keen for some people to know that I listen to the do you think you might be trans? Show that that that might be a bit of a bit of an issue. So, yeah, so that that sort of thing you'll be able to.

Speaker 3:

Yes, yeah, exactly. Well, that makes a bunch of sense. Now all we need is for somebody to allow us to extend blip 10. What is blip anyway? Do you know what blip stands for, james? Because I don't know.

Speaker 1:

I haven't faintest idea, no, no idea what is what is what is blip 10?

Speaker 3:

Well, when we first started building true fans, we looked up what was. Again, I still don't know what a TLV is. I use the words but I don't know what it mean. So the TLV record is basically the transaction of the payment that's been made. So if I'm streaming and I listening to this show, I will make a TLV record that shows how much I paid to stream this show.

Speaker 3:

Now in the blip 10, which is a document, you've got four verbs and you've got stream boost, I think boost to gram and auto and or this gram might be wrong Actually, so it might only be three. And so we had this real struggle. In the beginning, when I was listening to the casting to the OSHA, I'd be saying to Adam hey, I, you know I'm boosting you, can you see my record? And blah, blah, blah. And Adam, we're going. No, can't say a thing here. Looked on the box, nothing coming through. So I'm sorry and I'm like pulling my hair out and it's because they've got specific verbs in the blip 10. So now I understand that the blip 10 is a predetermined format and I think reply is the new one that's been added, because if you have a look in those boosts above James, you'll see that custommatic as a reply button. And what's the other one? What's that purple logo from Andrew Gromit? Is that his new with new one? His new platform?

Speaker 1:

That's a good question. Not quite sure. I think that's just the standard. Yeah, I don't know. I don't know what that one is.

Speaker 3:

You can see that you can see those reply options there against the boost, and so that's, I think, a new verb that's been added to the blip 10. So we've got this mechanism now, where we've got activity streams that have verbs and I have a structure active verb object and we have a blip 10. We could extend the blip 10 to these verbs and we can now do cross out comments. We can now do whatever we want and as a user, you can say yeah, I'm happy to allow you to see my comments, I'm happy to allow you to see who I follow, I'm happy to allow you to see who I played or not. It's a total control mechanism that we've built and we just need to extend blip 10 with more verbs, give a better functionality and then, yeah, anyway, that's what we've been working on.

Speaker 1:

Well, you asked what blip stood for and I said I don't know, and it's basically, it's the equivalent of a RFC. So so an RFC are the rules on which the internet works. So RFC, you know, four to two is you know, I don't know something, you know email or something like that. And blip is much the same. Rfc is a request for comment. That's what that essentially stood for, and blip is a Bitcoin lightning improvement proposal. Ah, ok, there you go. And so blip 10 is all about podcasting 2.0. Blip three is all about KeySend, and there's also blip 17, which is around hosted channels. So now we know. So, yes, so that's what a blip is. So it's very similar to RFC. Nobody was expecting that in the middle of the, in the middle of Sam and James's week, were they?

Speaker 3:

No, but no, that's a very cool thing. So what happened for you this week, James?

Speaker 1:

I ended up going to the University of South Queensland in Springfield not that one and and talked to the students there about the future of radio and the future of podcasting. They were very much more interested in the future of podcasting, it had to be said. So that was fun, enjoyed that, and also, what else did I do? Yes, and I was just pleasantly surprised at the setup of this relatively cheap Motorola Android phone, pleasantly surprised at how well I was able to set it so that I was in control of what happens on that phone. And you know, so my daughter can't install things that she shouldn't. She can't see things that she shouldn't. I mean, I'm sure that she will eventually, but you know what I mean. And yeah, and she can't use it after nine o'clock at night and all of these things.

Speaker 1:

It's a very smart thing and I think it's it's only once. Once you have kids and you realize all of the controls that you have to put in place, you know for them, to keep them safe. You know it does change your, you know your relationship with, with how the internet works and everything else. So interesting that you're talking about privacy controls for activity streams, and I'm there, you know, working out how to get this phone to be relatively safe for my, for my daughter Funniest thing. So she's been absolutely excited by the fact that she's had a mobile phone, super excited because she got it a little bit earlier than she thought that she was going to Right. And we went out today to the dog park to play Pokemon and she said, oh, my phone's not going to work over there because the Wi-Fi won't stretch, will it? And we had to remind her that it was actually. No, it's a proper phone. So, yeah, so it was glass, I know, I know.

Speaker 2:

There we go, and that's it for this week.

Speaker 1:

You can listen to the pod news daily, wherever you've got this podcast. You can subscribe to the pod news newsletter for more of these stories and much more. Actually, do that before you do anything else. Pod newsnet it's free and that would be a good thing. You can give feedback to James and I by sending this show a booster grant.

Speaker 3:

If your podcast doesn't support boosting, grab a new app from Pog podcasting2.org. Our music is from Studio Dragonfly.

Speaker 1:

Our voiceover is Sheila Dee. We use clean feed for our audio and we're hosted and sponsored by Buzzsprout podcast hosting made easy, get updated every day.

Speaker 2:

Subscribe to our newsletter at podnewsnet.

Speaker 1:

Tell your friends and grow the show and support us, and support us. The pod news weekly review will return next week.

Speaker 2:

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