Podcasting is a good medium for voyeurs…Helen Zaltzman presented how she got her start in Podcasting.
Podcasts need to be well produced, edited and in her eyes should contain some specific elements – 17 seconds is the golden number for capturing peoples attention online. Talking about producing a show on linguistics takes preparation, research and topics which captures the imagination or in her words ‘how to find interesting’.
Curiosity also drives the content of her shows for example interviews with people who have interesting jobs or situations. She treats high culture in a low way and vice versa, this leads to comedy in her shows and makes them more accessible to more people especially for a linguistics show. Dealing with Latin in the English language was a typical example of having to show how she needed to deal with a serious subject in an accessible way.
Editing and formats are easily changed due to the flexibility of podcasting – one show was recorded using a megaphone and another show she used her friends to improvise cold calling calls.
One of the challenges she has faced was advertising and making ads not boring. She did this through making the ads fun and rather silly. She has written 19 jingles for Square Space, ‘as a new digital media you need to be creative’. On finishing she said ‘The creative challenge is to make people not fast forward through ads’.