Media Monday Edmonton: Update #302

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Mayor Don Iveson speaking with the media
Mayor Iveson preparing to speak with the media last month

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #301

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Carbon Copy Unveiling
Carbon Copy was unveiled recently in the Brewery District

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

  • About 75 people were laid off on June 14 from Rogers Media’s digital content & publishing team. Here’s a statement from Rogers Media on the layoffs: “We have reorganized our…structure to reflect the headwinds the industry is facing and make the business sustainable.”
  • Following in the footsteps of Postmedia, Global News is launching a new podcast called “This is Why” to delve “deeper into the stories that matter to Canadians.”
  • The Logic is a new Canadian subscription news outlet. “Information wants to be $300 a year — and it wants to be exclusive, high quality, and lower quantity,” reports Nieman Lab.
  • Concordia University is launching the Institute for Investigative Journalism, the first of its kind in Canada, to be headquartered in the Department of Journalism.
  • From Quartz: “Next year, for the first time, we’ll spend more time using the internet than watching TV.”
  • Based on a new report from PwC, the Wall Street Journal reports that “advertisers spent an estimated $313.9 million on podcast ads in 2017, an increase of 86% from about $169.1 million a year earlier”.
  • Did you enjoy the S-Town podcast? Well, get ready for the movie. Participant Media has acquired the rights and Spotlight‘s Tom McCarthy is in negotiations to direct.
  • Don’t worry, #mprraccoon reached the roof and was rescued. Think about everything this story tells us about the state of media right now!

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #300

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Alberta offering gender-inclusive ID documents 98927
Alberta offering gender-inclusive ID documents, photo by Premier of Alberta

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

  • Roger Millions has announced he is retiring from sports broadcasting “after 39 incredible years” to pursue the UCP nomination in Airdrie-East.
  • Postmedia is eliminating 52 positions in Calgary with the closure of its printing plant. Black Press Group Inc. will begin printing the Calgary Sun this summer (the Calgary Herald printing moved to TC Transcontinental Printing in 2013).
  • From The Walrus: Inside the Toronto Star’s Bold Plan to Save Itself. “The crisis in media, in other words, has evolved from being technological to existential, as a news darkness threatens to descend wherever metro dailies are snuffed out.”
  • Ryerson’s multimedia publication The Future of Local News “is the culmination of several years of academic research, complemented by a year of student journalism, an international conference, and a cross-Atlantic editorial collaboration focused specifically on the current and future state of local news around the world.” They’re also now publishing content on Medium.
  • Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist, is giving $20 million to the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, which will rename itself the “Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York.” There’s a certain amount of irony in the news, given that Craiglist at least contributed to the decline of newspapers’ revenue. “When asked if his desire to give millions of dollars to the journalism school had sprung from a sense of guilt, Mr. Newmark said no.”
  • Postmedia has launched TheGrowthOp.com, a new website focused on the “quickly evolving world of cannabis.” The new site aims to “keep audiences informed and educated while working to normalize cannabis information from its long-time taboo and counter-culture status to its newly legitimized role in our communities.”

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #299

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Mayor Don Iveson
Mayor Don Iveson does the media scrum at the State of the City

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

  • In a new report, the CRTC recommends that ISPs and foreign streaming services should contribute to media funding in the same way that cable providers do.
  • The Hidden Costs of Losing Your City’s Newspaper: “Without investigative daily reporters around to call bullshit on city hall, three years after a newspaper closes, that city or county’s municipal bond offering yields increased on average by 5.5 basis points, while bond yields in the secondary market increased by 6.4 basis points—statistically significant effects.”
  • The Wall Street Journal reports on The Athletic, which says it now has more than 100,000 subscribers and 150 employees. “The Athletic has shown flexibility around its paywall in attempts to hire big-name writers.”
  • Plex, a popular service for managing and streaming media, has added support for podcasts. “Podcasts are also a great fit for the media platform we’ve built here at Plex, which is probably why people have asked us to add them for years.”
  • New data from Chartbeat suggests that “the number of mobile readers visiting news sites directly has surpassed the number visiting from Facebook.”

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #298

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

2018 State of the City Address

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #297

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

  • Effective Tuesday, May 29, CHQT-AM will be rebranded from “iNews 880” to “Global News Radio 880 Edmonton”. The memo announcing the news says that “880 will further integrate with the team at Global Edmonton” and that “some positions have been eliminated” as a result.
  • Puget Sound Radio reports that KiSS 91.7 FM afternoon hosts Mike & Helena have been let go. “Speculation is Jeff Holland who had previously worked at Calgary 101.5 Kool FM and recently left there and moved back to Edmonton is taking over the afternoon show on Kiss.”
  • CBC Edmonton’s 14-month investigative project Private Health, Public Risk? has been named as one of eight finalists for the prestigious 2017 Michener Award for public-service journalism.
  • The St. Albert Gazette is looking for a new editor. The deadline to apply is June 1. No word yet on what’s next for current editor Carolyn Martindale.
  • Vue Weekly spoke with Karen Unland and Chris Chang-Yen Phillips about podcasting a couple of weeks ago. “Podcasting has been incredibly accessible over the past few years compared to the early days, and more local, independent content is being produced from this technologically accessible era of content creation.”
  • Here’s a popular Twitter thread from Duncan Kinney: “Can we take a minute to talk about how messed up Alberta’s opinion media landscape is and how it consistently gives a platform to extreme far-right positions.” Later in the thread he tweets: “I’ve long toyed with the idea of building a news and opinion hub for progressives in Alberta. A Tyee for Albertans. I think it’s needed now more than ever as the provincial election in 2019 looms in the future.”
  • Matthew Dance wrote a teardown of a David Staples column on speed limits in Edmonton. “And for Staples’ credibility, it only gets worse.”
  • Here is the latest Alberta Podcast Network Roundup.
  • Internet cat sensation Nala, with 3.6 million followers, will be featured on Saturday at the Edmonton International Cat Festival.
  • Beaumont is going to be featured in an upcoming episode of the real estate TV show SEE it. LOVE it. BUY it.. “Last week, Visland issued a casting call for all home buyers in the Beaumont area to appear on the show.” The episode is slated to air next spring.
  • Gig City reports that Hellfire Heroes, an eight-show documentary series, “follows teams of firefighters working in two rural Alberta communities.” It premieres tomorrow on Discovery Canada.
  • The Yards will host its Summer Salon at CKUA on Thursday, June 7.
  • An Edmonton Radio Reunion is coming up on June 23. “Open to anyone that has worked in Edmonton radio.”

Premier welcomes Vancouver Board of Trade 95387
Premier welcomes Vancouver Board of Trade, photo by Premier of Alberta

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Recap: PodSummit 2018

I was really glad to have had the opportunity to attend PodSummit 2018 on Saturday, May 5 at CKUA in downtown Edmonton. About 100 “podcasters and the podcast-curious” attended the event to learn about starting a podcast, making it sound amazing, growing an audience, and creating content that listeners will love. Organized by Ernest Barbaric, the sold out event featured six sessions punctuated by ice-breakers and other fun activities. Every single talk was interesting and informative, so well done to the organizers and speakers on knocking it out of the park!

PodSummit

Before I share some of my notes from the day, you might be wondering why I (as primarily a blogger) would attend an event about podcasting!

My podcasting story

I started a podcast in 2013 with Graham Hicks called Mack & Cheese. We published 59 episodes before calling it quits and moving on to other projects. But my history with podcasting goes back much further, to 2004 when I launched a podcast called Blogosphere Radio before we even called them podcasts (we just called it a show). That helped me to see an opportunity, and in 2006 I launched Podcast Spot, a hosting service for podcasters. We ended up shutting it down a couple of years later.

Reflecting in October 2008 on what I might have done differently, I wrote:

“There’s a ton of things I might have done differently, but two things in particular: I would have avoided using the word “podcast” in the name of our service; and, I would have focused on sharing audio and video for a specific niche.”

At the time, podcasts were very associated with the iPod, and they were fairly difficult to work with. You still had to plug your device into a computer to sync the audio files! It was far from certain that podcasting would take off. Today it seems almost silly to question the success of podcasting, given the popularity of podcasts like Serial and The Daily, the latter of which apparently averages about 1 million listeners a day (and I am one of them).

Here’s what we learned at PodSummit

PodSummit reflected the current state of podcasting with a much more diverse audience than the geeks and old white guys that were common a decade ago. There was a good mix of podcasting vets and newbies.

The day started with Rob Greenlee‘s State of the Podcasting Union. He noted there has been “steady growth” but thanks to media coverage there’s “a perception that things are exploding.” Rob cited The Infinite Dial Canada, a new study of consumer behavior and media consumption, and noted that 61% of Canadians 18+ are familiar with the term podcast. There are something like 525,000 podcasts in existence, about half of which are active, with maybe 2,000 new ones added each month. The number of listeners for all of those podcasts could get much bigger in the months ahead as both Google and Spotify are ramping up their activities in the space. Rob finished by suggesting that dynamic ad insertion will be a big thing for podcasting in the year ahead.

PodSummit

Next up was Roger Kingkade who shared tips on how to design a successful podcast. “People will listen,” he said, noting that both David Letterman and Howard Stern amassed large audiences even though their topics don’t at first seem that interesting. “You are what will connect with the audience.” Here are his tips for podcasting success:

  • Your topic should be about someone else’s problem or interest. Start from a place of servitude, and know you’re filling a gap in your listener’s life.
  • You can find an existing community and learn about their wants and needs, then answer their questions on your podcast.
  • Make a perspective statement, and run every episode through it, to ensure that you stay on track.
  • Think about your approach: will be you be the Jedi teacher, the explorer, or the guide?
  • Ask your audience for ratings and reviews – they’re much more likely to do it if you ask!
  • You need to be consistent. Roger recommends recording a bunch of episodes before you launch, and publish the first three right away, to help develop a rapport with your audience.

Topic, Audience, and Perspective form the golden triangle for your podcast, he said. Roger suggested planning your podcast (one tool you could use is Karen’s Podcast Canvas) to ensure you focus on answering the right questions.

PodSummit

The final session of the morning was from Andrea Beça, who shared her tips on growth & promotion strategies. She echoed the importance of fulfilling a need or solving a problem with your podcast. “Podcasts are not an ‘if you build it they will come’ kind of thing,” she told us. It takes work, and you will put “way too many” hours into creating your podcast! Building your community is key to building your podcast, and Andrea shared a number of useful suggestions like choosing the right social media channels for your audience, thinking about visuals to help promote your work, and keeping tabs on previous guests to support them (and have them support you back). Speaking of guests, Andrea said to choose them wisely, and noted that the first 40 listeners will do more for you than your next 400, so honor them! She also said it is ok to reference past episodes, something that too many people are surprisingly reluctant to do. “Don’t let your content die,” she said.

PodSummit

I skipped lunch, but I understand that Ernest himself gave a great talk on how to start a podcast.

After lunch we heard from Mike Russell, who gave a masterclass on editing and production. His tool of choice is Adobe Audition, so that’s what he used to illustrate his tips:

  • Don’t edit out every pause or breath, otherwise it’ll sound unnatural.
  • Start with good audio – you can’t fix a terrible recording!
  • Don’t worry about mistakes: just be you.
  • You can make a voice sound better using the parametric equalizer tool.
  • You can also compress a voice a little, which will even out the loud and quiet parts of your voice.
  • You can add a noise gate to help get rid of background noises.
  • Use ripple deletes to trip an edit without leaving a gap.
  • If you’re interviewing someone via Skype, adaptive noise reduction can be very useful.

Mike was a great presenter, and I loved the approach he used, handing off to his pre-recorded self to demo things.

PodSummit

Next up was Andreas Schwabe who spoke about the art of podcasting. He’s a former teacher at NAIT and was the Director of Digital Media for the Oilers. He had some fantastic tips and suggestions:

  • Sound like you mean it!
  • Planning ahead is key. Reinforce the three phases: what you’re going to tell them, tell them, then recap it.
  • Writing for the ear is a different thing than normal writing. You can find this out by recording yourself and then transcribing the audio.
  • Keep it short using declarative sentences.
  • Avoid cliches like Monday soup. (Because the Friday leftovers go into the Monday soup!)
  • Play with turns of phrase. “You can lead a chicken to ice but you can’t make it skate.”
  • Sound provides a lot of information, including location, speed, material, mass, and density.
  • You can convey a lot with your voice through pacing, tension, etc.
  • Talk to an audience of one, not many.
  • Refer to events rather than dates or times, and rough figures rather than exact numbers (unless you need to be specific for a reason).
  • Identify your crutches like “so” or “ok” or “um” and work to reduce them.
  • Listen to lots of podcasts to find out what you hate about them so you can avoid that in your own podcast!
  • Remember that no one sets out to make a bad podcast.

Such a fantastic talk.

PodSummit

The final session of the day was a monetization campfire chat featuring Andrea Beça, Erika Ensign, and Karen Unland. It was a great chat on the three legs of the podcast monetization stool: sponsorship/ads, listener support, and feeding your business. They noted the chances are good that while you might earn enough to cover your costs, earning enough to cover your time is a whole other thing. The fact is, many podcasts are labors of love.

Wrap-up

As mentioned there were some great activities throughout the day, like Podcast Bingo. It was a fun way to move around the room meeting other people and learning a thing or two about them or their podcast. I also liked the Pitch It Forward activity that Karen from the Alberta Podcast Network hosted, which got people to pitch other people’s podcasts!

It’s really encouraging to see such a strong podcast community here in Edmonton. If you’re pod-curious, I encourage you to check out the Edmonton Podcasting Meetup. And if you’re looking for some great local podcasts to listen to, be sure to read the Alberta Podcast Network’s regular roundups.

PodSummit

Congratulations to Ernest, his wife, their adorable daughter, and all of the other volunteers on hosting such a useful and successful event!

You can see the rest of my photos here.

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #296

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Mayor Don Iveson speaking with the media

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #295

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

PodSummit
Roger Kingkade speaking at PodSummit on Saturday, May 5

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!

Media Monday Edmonton: Update #294

Here’s my latest update on local media stuff:

Slave Lake 91982Premier Rachel Notley at boom 92.7 in Slave Lake, photo by Premier of Alberta

And here is some slightly less local media stuff:

Follow Edmonton media news using the hashtag #yegmedia and be sure to check out Mediagazer for the latest media news from elsewhere. You can see past Media Monday Edmonton entries here. If you have a tip or suggestion for future updates, let me know.

At Taproot Edmonton we’re working hard to ensure that local journalism has a future in our city. Join us to be part of the movement.

Thanks for reading! Want to support my blog? Buy me a coffee!