What is a Podcast? Think iPod and Broadcast….you get Podcast. These are MP3 recording files that can be streamed or downloaded via the internet. Each mobile phone has a recording device, and most have a built-in app for listening to podcasts, such as the Podcasts app which is default on all iPhones. There is Stitcher, for Desktop, Apple and Android systems, and software like Audacity and Soundcloud to record with.
Why are Podcasts important? According to Williams & Sawyer (2013), who wrote the book Using Information Technology, podcasts are an expression of personalised media. Today there is virtually a podcast on any topic.
A few days before I read through the Rudaí 23 Thing 7 write-up about Podcasting, I spent some time thinking about what I would do with a podcast. The idea of making one for librarians came to mind. So I was thrilled to discover the link in Thing 7’s write-up, to Steve Thomas’ Circulating Ideas podcast for librarians. 😀 What a treasure trove! Food for librarians. Here is a link to his interview with public librarians attending the PLA 2016 Conference in Denver, Colorado. Bonus: at the end of this particular episode, Steve gives a talk on the ‘how to’ of Podcasting. Thanks Steve!
I took my time about getting to Thing 7. I had decided to challenge myself and record a Podcast. But with the challenge came procrastination. Well, besides the fact that it is Eid and the entire family is at home (making it rather difficult to get any serious writing done), I don’t relish the sound of my own voice. And it’s the Tour-de-France! And Wimbledon! Aaaah, choices, time, priorities…. I know that I am going to record, re-record, RE-record…etc., so I’m trying to find the moment when it’s going to (sort of) go smoothly. 😉
How can libraries incorporate podcasts? I’d love to hear suggestions from librarians who read this, or from anyone with great ideas. One use I thought of, was to record stories from folk in the community, and to post them on a page affiliated to the library website. These could be stories of survival, historic times, how tos (from experts), mothering, business tips, etc. Whatever the community has to offer, really. Thing 7’s writer, Emmet Keoghan, provides a link to a site that is an example of this. Personally, I’m sad that I did not think of recording my parents when they spoke of days gone by in the town where I grew up, or of their young days. These are stories that belong to the community really; conversations that we should foster. In current times we are connected by various devices and apps, but we are often disconnected from each other. Libraries can bring a whole community together, building a sense of belonging.
“To be a librarian is not to be neutral, or passive, or waiting for a question. It is to be a radical positive change agent within your community.”
R. David Lankes
In libraries they can be used for book reviews, author interviews, guides to using sources, and I’m sure much more. Here is a site with ideas for podcasting aimed at teachers, but since librarians can be seen as teachers/facilitators, we can use and adapt these suggestions too.
Podcasts are great for commuting. Plug in the headset and engage your mind while you drive, ride the bus or train. Here is a site I found for 6 Career-boosting Podcasts To Listen To, or how about 51 Smart Podcasts That Will Make Your Commute Way Better. My all-time favourite list that I discovered while doing an online course is the College InfoGeek’s 21 Educational Podcasts that’ll make you smarter. Ooooh, and this…
Remember to subscribe to your favourite podcast by way of the RSS feed.
Overdrive, the popular provider for e-books and audio books to public libraries and schools have a podcast blog, Professional Book Nerds, where they discuss new books, interview authors and do book recommendations.
I also found myself wondering about the legal side of things and discovered an article from creative commons.org, the Podcast Legal Guide.
And so, to my (8 minute) contribution folks. (Umm, please forgive the hiccups during the reading. 🙂 ) I read an excerpt from one of my favourite authors (on librarianship) – R David Lankes‘ book for librarians and their communities, called…
Image from Goodreads.com
It was hard to choose which excerpt to read from. I chose a section about ‘walled gardens’ (he uses a classic example – Facebook) from Chapter 5, and then a piece about librarians from Chapter 7. 🙂 Thank you David, for permission to read.
I actually found a great App for the iPhone, called OPINION. Super easy to download and use. It also allows simple editing of a recording. I uploaded my recording really fast to my Dropbox account, and from there I uploaded it to my Soundcloud account. Voila!
Hoping you’re inspired to search out some podcasts, or to get PODCASTING!
My thanks for stopping by. 🙂 Have a great day.
Clipart of person recording from http://publicdomainvectors.org/en/public-domain/ Dolphin clapping gif from gifanimations.com (public domain) Reference sources Lankes, R. David. 2012. Expect more: demanding better libraries for today's complex world. https://rilandpub.wordpress.com/ Williams, BK & Sawyer, SC. 2013. Using information technology: a practical introduction to computers & communications. 10th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill.