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Getting started with Podcasts

Even if you don’t listen to podcasts, you’ve probably heard of them. Podcasts have become a new way for people to get their news, hear about books, get lost in a mystery or hear interviews. Radio stations like CBC, NPR and community radio stations like Powell River’s CJMP have even jumped on board making programming available for those using podcasts.

According to International Podcast Day, “A good starting point, is to think of a podcast as “Internet Radio On-Demand.” It’s similar in that you can usually listen to it on your computer — but it’s more than that.”

Unlike traditional broadcast radio, podcasts aren’t bound to advertising which means they can “narrowcast” or provide niche content to a specific audience.

What makes podcasting so distinct is that it’s able to be immediately delivered via multiple podcast distributors (ie. Google podcast, iTunes, Spotify, Radio Public) or through podcatcher applications through a process known as RSS (Real Simple Syndication). From here list

What truly makes a podcast unique, and what gives a podcast its “casting” ability, is how it is able to immediately deliver itself to multiple podcast distribution points (such as iTunes and Stitcher Radio) or podcatcher applications through a process of syndication known as RSS (Real Simple Syndication). Through various platforms listeners can easily “subscribe” either though the RSS icon or through a subscription button.

Accessing Podcasts on your tablet or smartphone:

There are a variety of apps you can access for your Android or Apple device that will allow you to listen to subscribe to your favourite podcasts. You can also search for Podcasts on your computer and listen to them online without downloading them through an app.

Options for podcast apps:

  • RadioPublic
  • Google Podcasts
  • Apple Podcasts
  • Pocket Casts
  • Castbox
  • Podbean
  • Luminary
  • Stitcher
  • Spotify
  • Overcast
  • Castro 3
  • Podcast Addict

Get started with some recommended Podcasts:

Podcasts have developed in a way that there is something for every subject matter and theme. Nearly any niche topic will have a podcast related to it. This is because unlike traditional radio which had to appease advertisers and large corporate values and interests, podcasts can be made by anyone.

Podcasts created in British Columbia about regional topics and themes:

  • Blood, Sweat and Fear: A True Crime Podcast by Eve Lazarus
  • Rookie Hunter
  • Relentless Knitting Podcast
  • Monograph: A podcast series that explores history and true-crime in British Columbia, Canada.
  • Vancouver Real: Vancouver Real is a podcast dedicated to cultural evolution. It is a melting pot of ideas, beliefs and questions explored by hosts, brothers, Andy and Mike Zaremba with guests both local and international.
  • The Cougar Lady ChroniclesThe Cougar Lady Chronicles is a true pioneering adventure story set in the rainforest of the West Coast of Canada in the 20th century.
  • Wild PickWild Pick is Grant Lawrence’s latest story-telling podcast: this is the true tale of the life and adventures of Linda Syms, oyster farmer of Desolation Sound.
  • The Hermit of Desolation SoundHermit of Desolation Sound is the story of a man who dropped out of society to live a self-imposed life of solitude along the shores of the West Coast Canadian rain forest for many years. Russell Letawsky is the hermit – a man who grew up in Alberta and was a downtown Toronto business man before something snapped.
  • Bernard the German: Bernard the German is the tragic tale of the giant of Desolation Sound, the true story of an ox of a man who died just as he lived- very remarkably, while following his dreams right to his grave.
  • The Spaghetti BanditThe Spaghetti Bandit is a true crime wilderness podcast series, originally intended for parents to enjoy with kids.
  • The Tale of a Town – Canada: Capturing the collective community memory of our country’s main streets, one story at a time.
  • Interesting Vancouver: Interesting Vancouver Portraits (previously IV Presents) is a podcast series hosted by David Swanson and Josh Gabert-Doyon featuring conversations with ordinary Vancouverites leading extraordinary lives.

Canadian literary podcasts

  • Writing the Coast: The BC and Yukon Book Prizes Podcast: Welcome to Writing the Coast! This is the bi-weekly podcast where we chat with the authors and illustrators of the books who make up the shortlist of the annual BC and Yukon Book Prizes.
  • Page Fright: Andrew French interviews established and emerging authors about breaking through as writers and finding their literary style.
  • The Can’t Lit Podcast: A podcast on all things Canadian and Literature. Hosted by Dina Del Bucchia and Jen Sookfong Lee.
  • Betrayed: A True Crime Podcast by Penguin Random House Canada: Betrayed is a podcast about the crimes that cut the deepest. What happens when we can’t trust the people and institutions that are supposed to protect us? Our partners, our parents, our government… In this weekly non-serialized podcast from Penguin Random House Canada, host and producer Tina Pittaway brings you riveting high-stakes stories about the most intimate of crimes. It will have you asking … could this happen to me?
  • Semi-Prose: semi-prose is the books podcast that’s half as serious and twice as smart as your other favorite books podcast.

Popular book podcasts:

  •  The Book Review – The New York Times: The world’s top authors and critics join host Pamela Paul and editors at The New York Times Book Review to talk about the week’s top books, what we’re reading and what’s going on in the literary world.
  • Backlisted: Each episode features a guest (usually a writer) who has chosen a book they love and which they think deserves a wider audience.
  • The New Yorker Fiction Podcast: A monthly reading and conversation with the New Yorker fiction editor Deborah Treisman.
  • What Should I Read Next? By Anne Bogel: What Should I Read Next? is the show for every reader who has ever finished a book and faced the problem of not knowing what to read next.
  • Get Booked: Personalized Book Recommendations: Get Booked is a weekly podcast for personalized reading recommendations, hosted by Book Riot’s Amanda Nelson and Jenn Northington.
  • The Guardian Books Podcast: The Guardian Books podcast is our weekly look at the world of books, presented by Claire Armitstead, Richard Lea and Sian Cain.