is a series of digital-media files which are distributed over the
Internet using syndication feeds for playback on portable
media players and computers. The term podcast, like broadcast,
can refer either to the series of content itself or to the method by
which it is syndicated; the latter is also called podcasting. The
host or author of a podcast is often called a podcaster.
The term is a portmanteau of the words "iPod" and "broadcast" the Apple iPod being the brand of portable media player for which the first podcasting scripts were developed. These scripts allowed podcasts to be automatically transferred to a mobile device after they are downloaded.
Though podcaster's web sites may also offer direct download or streaming of their content, a podcast is distinguished from other digital media formats by its ability to be syndicated, subscribed to, and downloaded automatically when new content is added, using an aggregator or feed reader capable of reading feed formats such as RSS or Atom.
PUBLISHED BY KEN DUNN - DUNWAY ENTERPRISES
Because podcasting is such a new, exciting, cutting edge phenomena, many people are eager to get connected, and hence the Howard Stern podcast.
Everyone wants to be part of the next big thing, but not everyone is suited or ready to do so. The Howard Stern Podcast was created and shown on iTunes, the Apple company's music store. However, the podcast was never updated, and the only clip ever provided didn't even include Howard Stern.
This has brought a lot of flack down on Howard Stern, as well as Sirius Radio, which broadcasts Stern. Many of these people would have preferred to hear Stern when they wanted to, as a podcast, and were disappointed that the feed was not being used.
The Howard Stern podcast is probably an example of some of the problems that can arise with podcasting. Its new, and very hyped, so everyone wants to be a part of it. However, the podcast is designed to be free.
RSS feeds are designed to easily distribute files, that can then be redistributed and shared by the users who download them. It would be close to impossible for a podcaster to charge for their content.
Either the podcaster would have a small circle of people who enjoy the feed, and very few who would want to pay for it, or be very popular, as Stern is, and have the problem of paying customers possibly redistributing the content so others won't need to pay.
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