I saw a post on Facebook this morning that made me want to spew my guts in a rant. I’ll try and keep it dialed down, since I don’t know all of the details, but suffice it to say that apparently a “fan” gave a podcaster some degree of grief for not giving away all of their stuff for free.
I got into podcasting for a few reasons. The first and foremost was that I was inspired by the likes of Mur Lafferty, JC Hutchins, Scott Sigler, and a whole host of the first generation podcast fiction writers. They were getting their words in front of people in a new way. It helped them build an audience and a community of support. Their generosity (and taking the untold hours to create the audio after taking the hours to write is beyond generous) was inspiring. I wanted to do that. So, I did.
There’s a problem though. In some circles it seems that this generosity has created a sense of entitlement. I’ll admit to falling prey to that a time or two. When Hutch stepped down from podcasting his fiction my gut reaction was somewhat negative. He owed his fans, didn’t he? Eventually I realized the bullshit behind my anger. I cheered him on and he’s doing some awesome things.
Here’s how you respond to the generosity that podcasters are displaying, when/if they decide to put down the microphone (or even before then). Buy their stuff if they have stuff for sale. If they don’t, and not all podcasters are fiction writers who put their works out there in e-book/dead tree formats, or if you can’t (hey, times are tough and we don’t all have ducats to spare), there are other options. Review their podcasts on iTunes and the other venues set up for that. Blog about them. Use social media to spread the word.
To that end, I give my heartfelt thanks to Mur, Scott, and JC. There are more people than that though.
Currently in my iPod I’m pleased to be listening to:
Decoder Ring Theatre
Every Photo Tells
The Functional Nerds
How To Disappear Completely
Jen And Dave
The Roundtable Podcast
Timothy C Ward
And that doesn’t count the dozens of podcasters, bloggers, and other folks that have given me years of FREE CONTENT since I’ve been traveling the intertubes. You people are all awesome. Please keep it coming and let me know how I can help you!