Good Morning, Podcasters!
Good Morning, Podcasters!

Episode 39 · 2 months ago

RSS Turns 20 Years Old!


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Good morning, podcasters, and happy birthday to our founding father, RSS, who turns a whopping twenty years old today. I'm going to talk about RSS, why we owe it our appreciation and what the future may look like in podcasting without it. That's up next. Without RSS, podcasting never happens, full stop. Without this speck of technology, this dialect of x am L, an audio file created by a random human of no importance as far as the mainstream media was concerned, would ever have been able to be uploaded to a server and distributed literally all over the world. RSS Enables a person to record their voice, their video or write their words and to distribute those things all over the planet for anyone to be able to receive and enjoy. It is the pirate radio wave of today. There is no gate keeping, no se Nuralization, there is just you, a message you want to get out,...

R S, s, the APPs that parse that RSS feed, and the people who want to listen, to watch or read that message. As a tool of information dissemination, it is the greatest thing since sliced bread, or perhaps Morse code. There's no doubt that we owe everything we have in podcasting today to the creation and existence of RSS, but how big a role does it play today and how big a role would it play in the future? Before we get into that, I want to remind you that this podcast is sponsored by focus right and their brand new votecaster one and votecaster to audio interface devices. You're hearing me through the votecaster one right now. It's driving my r e twenty without the need for a cloud lifter, and it even enables me to use my good microphones with APPs like clubhouse or twitter spaces on my phone. It is my daily driver and I love it. And if you're in the market for a new one or two xlr input audio interface device,...

...the team over at focus right has created these, the votecasters, just for podcasters, and I would suggest that you check them out. There's a link in the show notes, or you can just go to GM pod dot c o forward slash focus right. That's FO C U S R I t e to learn more. Back to RSS, the future of it anyway. Is it here to stay? Do podcasters still want it? Do they still need it? I think the answer is it depends on the kind of podcaster you are. R S S cannot die. It is a technology SPEC that will always exist and so long as there are apps and services around to Parse R S S feeds, it will always be available as a tool of information and media distribution. It is in this way immortal. Likewise, there will always be people who want to use R S S, because using it is free and it requires no one's permission to do so. If you have an idea that you wanted tostribute globally, simply stick it in an RSS feed.

Host that RSS feed on a server somewhere and give people the address to access it. No FCC, no government, no one getting in your way. But there are people who do not care about RSS, and we're seeing more and more of those people every day. Consider TIKTOK or twitter creators or personalities. Certainly, these platforms are closed platforms which require you to have an account and so are not free and open. You are subject to the terms and conditions of those platforms. You need their permission to remain creating with their tools. Break a rule and away you will go, as they ban or d platform you. But close platforms have multiple benefits that RSS does not and cannot have. They have a way to target listeners with ads, to grow your audience. They have monetization and engagement tools built into them. They have cool filters for your videos and pictures, cool music to use with your audio, a way to follow friends and have them follow you. And when it comes... monetization, well, let's just say people making millions on Youtube or Tiktok seem to be more frequent than those doing the same with any media delivered via RSS Alone. Creators of the future may not care about the open source benefits of RSS. They clearly already do not mind using and creating on closed platforms. They use tiktok to build businesses, instagram reels and youtube to do the same. And to these individuals, the idea of having to solve monetization, marketing and engagement all on their own is impractical as hell and asking too much. After all, their creators not marketers, not business magnates, not salesmen or saleswomen, just creators. For what it's worth, and in my opinion, I think the future is largely RSS Minimal. It will see RSS as an afterthought. RSS May be used by large closed platforms to deliver audio or whatever media, but creators won't even understand that it's there. Or why it's...

...there. They'll just care that they can create, distribute, reach people, grow an audience, make some money and find whatever their version of success is. Even if RSS is forever central to the delivery of PODCASTS, which it doesn't have to be. Creators won't care nor have any knowledge of it, just in the same way they don't understand the role other distribution methods play in, for example, the delivery of their favorite netflix series. They simply care that they can create and succeed, and that will be enough for them. Of course, the further we go in that direction, the easier it will become to forget these secondary and tertiary podcast players and begin to consume primarily, and we already do this kind of media mostly on Apple podcasts or spotify podcast directly, and the more that happens, the more likely it will be that those bigger platforms will no longer see the value of RSS and switch to some other form of proprietary delivery, in the same way that some file extensions only... with some programs or some programs only work on some operating systems. This is the way of things, usually, the behavior of the market, the needs of creators, these are the things that will drive the future, and the future will be what it becomes, regardless of what we pro R SS advocates might wish it to. The path of least resistance, unfortunately, is often, nearly always, the path most well traveled. That's all I've got for you today. Hope you learned something and, if you did, consider becoming a supporter and getting a new episode almost every day of the week. GO TO G MP DOT SUPERCAST DOT COM and sign up for five dollars and forty cents a month. That's like very few pennies per episode, and it's definitely less than most drinks at starbucks or whatever yuppy coffee shop you choose to go to every morning. Plus, it makes me feel warm and fuzzy. So give me some money, get more episodes and hang out with me in the morning more often. Again, that's GMP DOT supercast dot com. Thanks again for listening. I appreciate you being here and until next time, take...

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