Podcasting: The Bubble?

Chat with Scott Gatz of Yahoo about whether the numbers from a recent survey about RSS and podcasting underscore a bubble in podcasting.
Heather Green

Scott Gatz from Yahoo was in town for the BlogOn conference and he stopped by our offices to talk about a survey done in August about RSS and podcasting that Yahoo recently released.

Other bloggers covered the RSS results, but I was intrigued by the results on podcasting.....28% of the people surveyed were aware of podcasting, but only 2% actually listened to podcasts.

I asked Gatz, so is this a bubble? And he said, nope, an opportunity. He pointed out that this survey was done before Yahoo this month released its podcasting service. The difference between those who had heard of podcasts and those who had used them actually reflected the fact that the tools for finding and listening to podcasts were too hard to use. With their podcasting service, Gatz said, Yahoo planned to make podcasting as accesible as it had done with RSS.

Yahoo does seem to have had real success by embedding RSS within My Yahoo, so well that most people don't even know their using RSS. Gatz said that a few million people (under 10 million was the guidance he gave) now use RSS on My Yahoo, up from 6,000 in January.

There is some bubbliness going on though with podcasting. Apple in late June released its iTunes podcasting service, so that should have shown up a little in the numbers from Yahoo. That frenzy will have to right itself. But I think podcasting is around to stay, in whatever form it ends up taking, and that Gatz is right in saying that Yahoo will turn many more people into podcasting users.

    Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.