Anyone want to do a MetaFilter podcast? August 4, 2005 2:52 PM   Subscribe

Anyone want to do a MetaFilter podcast? I know slashdot and digg have toyed with these where basically some users grab a six-pack, turn on a microphone, and scroll through the previous week's posts and discuss them. I tried it by myself and quickly realized I hadn't read all the posts or had much to say about the popular ones. Anyone that's an avid reader and wants to try doing the audio thing want to take a crack at it? I'd be happy to host a podcast and deal with all the bandwidth costs.
posted by mathowie to Feature Requests at 2:52 PM (133 comments total)

also, it could be collaborative or whatever. Maybe someone does just Ask MeFi, maybe three people do different stuff with a "this week's best posts" thing. Maybe someone could record a skype conference call with a bunch of users.

I'm just putting it out there if anyone wants to try -- I think it could be kind of cool if the right person did it. Probably be more fun to listen to than to read the site. :)
posted by mathowie (staff) at 2:55 PM on August 4, 2005


I'd talk about my thoughts.

(Of course, I haven't a clue what podcasting is or how one does it).

Why not just irc?
posted by dios at 2:56 PM on August 4, 2005


Fishfucker would be great at this. Get him.
posted by dios at 2:58 PM on August 4, 2005


I haven't a clue what podcasting is or how one does it

You turn on a microphone, start recording a mp3 and just talk about whatever. I thought someone doing a review of mefi might be worth listening to since the slashdot guys used to do a weekly hour audio show.

The actual "podcasting" part is some mild technical stuff that I could setup, so that you could have iTunes download all the mefi podcasts automatically.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:07 PM on August 4, 2005


I would love to do something like this if I had time, but it just doesn't seem possible right now. If it got started then I would definately participate in the future.

Right now I can't get my headset microphone to work. Dunno if it is a driver or hardware issue but I am considering buying a cheapo mic just to see if it works.
posted by weretable and the undead chairs at 3:11 PM on August 4, 2005


How to Create Your Own Podcast - A Step-by-Step Tutorial

That said, I don't really see the need.
posted by crunchland at 3:15 PM on August 4, 2005


I would loooove this but I'm not the one for the job. Should we have a constant crew? Rotating assignments?

#1, this might slip off the grey before the right person sees it, and I think it's sorta a BFD ... sidebar link?
posted by lbergstr at 3:20 PM on August 4, 2005


i vote for quonsar.
posted by keswick at 3:21 PM on August 4, 2005


quonsar eats podcasts.
posted by I EAT TAPES at 3:29 PM on August 4, 2005


Man, that "__ eats ___" thing never gets tired.
posted by Mid at 3:38 PM on August 4, 2005


I'd volunteer, except I hate the sound of my recorded voice. I KNOW I speak at least an octave lower than I sound.
posted by WolfDaddy at 3:39 PM on August 4, 2005



Fishfucker would be great at this. Get him.


get me what? a bowlful of ice-cream? a bottle of vodka? a cure for cancer?

don't keep me in suspense.
posted by fishfucker at 3:40 PM on August 4, 2005


How about a fish?
posted by dios at 3:56 PM on August 4, 2005


You could do a MetaTalk podcast and have people screaming at each other about politics, religion, and Pepsi Blue/Apple.
posted by matildaben at 3:58 PM on August 4, 2005


I was asked to post this by a person I shall not name unless threatened by a judge:

"Who wants to listen to 2 hours of some guy saying "Unable to connect to JRun server"?"

But that said I think it would be spiffy and I would like to participate however I haven't got the time, really.
posted by beth at 3:59 PM on August 4, 2005


With the right person it could be very funny, very good. With the wrong person (much easier to find), it could be amazingly awful (and chances are the 'right' person wouldn't want to do it).

I would personally vote for languagehat.
posted by justgary at 4:05 PM on August 4, 2005


I don't like Podcasting-TiVotasting, how about a page where the best of the week is highlit by say 3 or 4 people, esp. mjjj.
posted by riffola at 4:06 PM on August 4, 2005


Is highlit not a proper word? My Queen's English educamationtron fails me. :(
posted by riffola at 4:07 PM on August 4, 2005


I'm totally up for this. The one thing my new computer won't do properly is record, though, at the moment, but I've got an iRivier H320 on order at the moment, and it should be here next week. I can record to mp3 on that.

I'd be downright keen to give it a shot.

Better would be a recorded Skype conference, maybe, with a few participants. I'd love jonmc to be in there. He's got the Voice. Timezones suck, though, for me at least.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:08 PM on August 4, 2005


I said 'at the moment' twice on purpose.


OK, no I didn't. I'm on my first coffee of the morning.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:08 PM on August 4, 2005


I know the one done by the former TechTV people is done via skype. It seems to work for them.
posted by smackfu at 4:09 PM on August 4, 2005


how about a page where the best of the week is highlit by say 3 or 4 people, esp. mjjj.

You mean, MeFiDistilled?
posted by SeizeTheDay at 4:10 PM on August 4, 2005


basically some users grab a six-pack

I have to admit, this is part of what attracts me to the idea. I may not post under the influence these days, but podcasting under the influence seems like the Wave of The Future!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:18 PM on August 4, 2005


::pretends to threaten beth with a judge::

I would love to do this, but I haven't been around much lately and it looks like I may be going back to work soon, so time would be a factor.

Also, I hate my voice, ugh@me
posted by kamylyon at 4:18 PM on August 4, 2005


Yeah, like MeFiDistilled, only you know on MeFi.
posted by riffola at 4:22 PM on August 4, 2005


I think the best discussion of posts here happens in the related thread.

Having said that, it could work. I would like to see maybe a podcast.metafilter.com where there would be a semi-transcript featuring the posts/links being discussed in easily clickable format. Otherwise there would be too much pausing involved as the listener tried to catch up on something they missed on the site.

It would be nice (and also impractical) to rotate the commentators as in most chat/discussion shows. People here are way too politically (and *ally) sensitive to accept the viewpoints of another person (regardless of orientation) for longer than 5-10 mins, and it would be difficult to keep discussions completely neutral. The podcast would also have to be strictly for the best of Metafilter to avoid the harping and callouts of metatalk.mefi, and hopefully the "I have a rash" of ask.mefi :|
posted by fire&wings at 4:58 PM on August 4, 2005


rcade should really do it, with q and jon and dong and some other funny members, with Very Special Guest Stars juju or jess or dejah.
posted by amberglow at 5:45 PM on August 4, 2005


I'll say it.

Most podcasts are worse than most blogs (self promoting, everyone wants to be a star.)

Want a good podcast. Follow this simple storytelling technique.

Less is more.

40 min is better than 60.
15 is better than 40
Somwhere around 10 minutes...low committment high fun.
posted by filmgeek at 5:56 PM on August 4, 2005


yeah, I was thinking 10 minutes is about all you'd need.

A member emailed a great idea: make the podcast anonymous, so that it didn't really matter who was doing the recording and they could feel free to say anything they wanted.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:03 PM on August 4, 2005


What if we get away from the notion of a monolithic Podcast and had people submit tiny little recordings that could be collated?

And we could even have one or more editors to put in a little work each week to throw it together.
posted by cortex at 6:12 PM on August 4, 2005


Which has the advantage of allowing a wider variety of people to talk for shorter (and thus, presumably, higher average quality) segments about things that specifically interest them.

KMFI -- Metafilter Radio
posted by cortex at 6:14 PM on August 4, 2005


Nah, come on, you over-competitive bastards... This is clearly a podcastbattle in waiting! What are the most frequently meety-uppy cities? I'm guessing NY, SF, LA, maybe London, maybe Toronto, maybe Vancouver, maybe somewhere crazy and antipodean or some shit like that...

Set a timeframe. Set a topic. Suggest an appropriate amount of beer. And wait for the words to spill out - like glittering shards of condensed wit, spewed forth joyfully into the gloomy ether - as every area that can get a discursive crew together fights for the pride of their hometown in attempting to prove themselves masters of loquacity and semantic prestidigitation.

It would be awesome. Or, you know, shit. One or the other.
posted by flashboy at 6:21 PM on August 4, 2005


Alright, I was going to say that this is just not a good idea -- I've thought of it myself, but distilling MeFi down to something listenable just doesn't seem possible without sucking in one way or another (or two or seven.)

But fire&wings seems to have an interesting take on it. If we could actually get some people together, multiple commentators, on the really big topics of the past week (or couple of days, or whatever), that might actually be something quite listenable. But choosing the people, getting them scheduled, orchestrating it and editing it nicely... it wouldn't be a small amount of work.

Looking for some topics from the past couple days... there's been a lot of shit lately, very few things have broken the 100 comment line. There's the CIA-beat-up-guy-in-Iraq thread, Health Escalators, Meth Fiends .. oh here we go. Intelligent Design in Schools. We could have tddl and dios go against each other in live-to-podcast audio. On that. Next week, y2karl and quonsar in a no-holds-barred deathmatch.
posted by blacklite at 6:55 PM on August 4, 2005


I don't get it . . . I mean, doesn't every user already have the opportunity to express his opinion about each post in its respective thread? Why do we need one or two people to be the voice of Fate Big Brother MetaFilter?
posted by jenovus at 6:57 PM on August 4, 2005


Uh, on post: 'On that' shouldn't be there, or should be joined to the previous sentence and have 'topic' after it.
posted by blacklite at 6:57 PM on August 4, 2005


Yeah, it might be a stupid idea, jenovus. In any case, It'd be a Project for sure. I wouldn't mind assisting with something, as long as it's not just a straight up distillation. MeFi is good because of the screaming and yelling discussion.
posted by blacklite at 6:59 PM on August 4, 2005


What if we get away from the notion of a monolithic Podcast and had people submit tiny little recordings that could be collated?

This is the best idea yet - I'm sure there are a pile of users willing to record some short comments that could all be patched together into quite a decent show.
posted by Jimbob at 7:00 PM on August 4, 2005


there's been a lot of shit lately, very few things have broken the 100 comment line.

Number of comments is emphatically not a measure of quality. It is often the worst posts, in terms of wbe-bestitude, that get the most comments. [/derail]

Also, the more you try to organize, the less likely there is to be any actual result. This is the way these things usually work.

If Matt wants to pay his new codemonkeymaster to do it, I'd suggest freely uploadable podcasts to a subsite, with some sort of popularity/hitcount thing and lots of nice community gadgets (ie comment threads, tagging, whatever we can come up with) to float the 'best' to the top. And a continuous-play radio station with all of 'em, end to end.

That'd be some bandwidth right there.

Although an Authorized Metafilter Podcast™, with a rotating semi-regular set of hosts, say, would be coolness, daddy-o.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:03 PM on August 4, 2005


Ok here's an idea, get a bunch of MeFi members to join a Skype type conference call. They can talk about their favourite threads of the week, maybe a featured guest member, like say juju, she can talk about how she determines what is MeFi worthy and what ain't, etc and then someone record it, and have that as the weekly podcast.
posted by riffola at 7:06 PM on August 4, 2005


good idea--like "Best Week Ever"
posted by amberglow at 7:36 PM on August 4, 2005


I'm with jenovus. All we ever hear is "there is no cabal" but now we've got #1 himself saying people's text comments aren't enough, that select users should be given a microphone to say what's really important.

wait, is it too late to say that I would totally listen to it each and every week?
posted by If I Had An Anus at 7:51 PM on August 4, 2005


What if we get away from the notion of a monolithic Podcast and had people submit tiny little recordings that could be collated?

And we could even have one or more editors to put in a little work each week to throw it together.


Or even better, each member could contribute a letter or syllable to a centralized database, and then the week's designated monolithic podcaster could do his/her broadcast using a Stephen Hawking-style speech synthesizer. It would be incredibly fucked up and weird the authentic voice of Metafilter!
posted by Sonny Jim at 7:53 PM on August 4, 2005


thanks riffy and amber for suggesting me, but I would suck at this type of thing...I nominate stavros. As for the best of the web type of thing - who better than anastasiav?

heh heh heh - this calls for a miguel revival.
posted by madamjujujive at 7:53 PM on August 4, 2005


All we ever hear is "there is no cabal" but now we've got #1 himself saying people's text comments aren't enough, that select users should be given a microphone to say what's really important.

You're joking, right?

I said here's an idea that anyone here can do on their own and I'd be willing to foot the bill for them. I'm essentially saying "hey, you got time and the motivation to try this? go ahead and I'll give you free space to do it." There aren't any "select users," anyone can do it.

And I didn't see it as a replacement for what's here, but thought that it simply could be an interesting new outlet.

Of course, the other ideas of recordings at meetups, skype conference calls, and/or people submitting snippets on their topic of choice are all great additions that build on the idea of what an audio feed for metafilter might entail.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:05 PM on August 4, 2005


You're joking, right?

Yeah, kinda...too subtle?
posted by If I Had An Anus at 8:16 PM on August 4, 2005


I would be interested in this, specificially, hearing all the AskMe posts regarding lawn care read in a porn lady voice.

Is this too niche-y?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:23 PM on August 4, 2005


Yes, specificially.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:23 PM on August 4, 2005


I heartily endorse this idea and would certainly participate if I weren't already in way over my head working on two separate podcasts. I like the snippets idea, it's just like... I can't think of the site now - what's the one where people upload little snippets? Anyone? Anyone? I'm pretty sure it has "podcast" in the domain name. Oh well, anyway, I could contribute that way if we went that route, but if we do it more like Matt suggested, I would second the rcade nomination or, of course, Miguel.
posted by soyjoy at 8:25 PM on August 4, 2005


Let's make it only newbies : >
posted by amberglow at 8:26 PM on August 4, 2005


Would or could this be like a Front Page Post? Best of the Audio? Or best of commentary? Just a great idea anyway!
posted by snsranch at 8:31 PM on August 4, 2005


Using Skype like that would solve the multiple-people thing. That sounds like it could definitely work, and would be the most interesting form of this. Put it together with some sort of crazy host, and people submitting snippets -- it could be not bad.

Number of comments is emphatically not a measure of quality.
Okay, yeah. But it does indicate what gets people talking.
posted by blacklite at 8:33 PM on August 4, 2005


Who is the audience for this? I mean, I read most of MeFi on a normal week, but I don't care much what any one person says about anything. Much less would I download and then listen to any one person (or small group) waxing off philosophical about posts I've already read. Something I've noticed about podcasts- there seem to be a lot more folks who want to make them, than folks who want to listen to them.

This MeFi/podcast thing seems to me a little bit like drive-thru wedding chapels... two good ideas that don't really belong together.

(P.S.- I think Anus had to be joking)
posted by BoringPostcards at 8:33 PM on August 4, 2005


a lot more folks who want to make them, than folks who want to listen to them.

This is true with any online media, I think. This is just taking MeFi into the world of audio. ... It's an idea, anyway. Podcasts are new and no one quite knows what to do with them yet, and this is a new thing to try.
posted by blacklite at 8:36 PM on August 4, 2005


"but I don't care much what any one person says about anything." posted by BoringPostcards

I agree. I would do the sit around with a mic and a six pack, but I would just piss everyone off, seriously.

Hence the FPP idea. Listen to them, screen 'em, podcast 'em.
posted by snsranch at 8:38 PM on August 4, 2005


If it was me (and I wouldn't, my nasal Australian voice just wouldn't cut it) I would totally avoid newsfilter posts and just talk about the kooky and bizarre posts. Or maybe just the deleted posts. "Coming up after these short messages- a flamewar erupts in an Iraq thread--AGAIN!! And our community service reporter with a few server-related messages from our sister station WMTATLK. And don't forget to join us overnight for another twelve hours of AskMe, by request..."

Shuffles off to find voice-changing software...
posted by bdave at 8:39 PM on August 4, 2005


I like the snippets idea, it's just like... I can't think of the site now - what's the one where people upload little snippets? Anyone? Anyone?

There's a new site in private beta that users from a certain other website to which many mefites also belong have been allowed to use. It is that. But I'm not sure that's what you're talking about.

That was a bit obscure, sorry.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:31 PM on August 4, 2005


BoringPostcards writes "and then listen to any one person (or small group) waxing off philosophical"


heh heh . . . "waxing off"
posted by jenovus at 9:34 PM on August 4, 2005


I gotta agree with crunchland. What's the point? Subtract the buzzword value of "podcasting" and what would be the value of this?

Secondly, and be honest, who would take the time to listen to this? And if you're one of MeFi's most active users and you say yes, you're either a liar or a fool, as the most active users really have no reason to listen to an audio summary of the day's posts. Aside from the hey-that-would-be-so-coolishness, is there any there there?

(And yes, I am drunk right now, thanksferaskin.)
posted by aaronetc at 9:44 PM on August 4, 2005


Ah. Thanks, stavros, but here's the one I was trying to think of: Open Podcast.
posted by soyjoy at 10:01 PM on August 4, 2005


Well, aaronetc, I'm still sober (damn timezones), and I get what you're getting at, but sometimes it's cool to say 'why the hell not?' and give some kind of creative thing a blast, in hopes that Really Neat Stuff happens as a result.

I'm similarly underwhelmed with 'podcasting' to be honest -- particularly the 'pod' part, because I'm one of those evil people who like to laugh at Applefashion -- but I think it's cool that Matt's making the offer to host some Metacasts. It may fly, it may plummet like WKRP's turkeys (and music.metafilter, lest we forget), but hey, why the hell not?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:37 AM on August 5, 2005


I work in radio and have access to all sorts of funky equipment, so I wouldn't mind giving this a try once. I'm going through a bit of a rough spot at the moment, but maybe sometime in the future..
posted by Ljubljana at 12:47 AM on August 5, 2005


I think a plain summary would be completely pointless. We can read. Which is why I was suggesting alternative things that can be done with audio. There's potential there, but reading out loud what we can already read is definitely not it. (we have text-to-speech for that.)
posted by blacklite at 1:06 AM on August 5, 2005


Matt just wants to expand his $5 audience to the blind.

It'd be interesting, but not something that I could commit to on any regular basis. Because I've already got too many things that take up my time and don't pay (like surfin' here).
posted by klangklangston at 1:45 AM on August 5, 2005


yeah jon mc totally ,
can you imagine how good it would be if he was doing a music slot ?
bring in guest speakers etc
like amber and paris discussing the political threads
and have jon linking it all up
this would be very good indeed actually.
Surely The second coming of Migs is nigh for this.
Bonaldi's got a good voice as well by the way.

*plays air guitar*
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:13 AM on August 5, 2005


I think a good format for this would be having different combinations of members taking it in turns to discuss the week's activity.
posted by nthdegx at 4:37 AM on August 5, 2005


I think this is a great idea. All the podcasts I've seen to date suck balls, and this is the first time that I've seen mention of a Podcast that I'd actually really like to hear. I simply don't have time to read all the posts in the Blue and to have some people just give a run down of what's gone on, and perhaps talk about some of the more obscure posts that may have been overlooked, that would be a cool thing to listen to on my 36 minute walk to work.

I would suggest that any of you in this thread that are interested in actually taking part in this make yourselves known to each other, ignore any negativity in this thread and just go ahead and do it, before this turns into one of those nice ideas that never comes to aught. I would take part, but really, I'd suck.
posted by chill at 4:39 AM on August 5, 2005


throwin in some ideas here -

10 minute podcast - 5 two minute slots for people with somebody to link ?

best link of the week , worst link of the week , biggest flameout , an mp3 bit , a 2 minute shoutout/checkin from people ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:07 AM on August 5, 2005


beginning and end with a one minute intro and shout out on either side of the middle 8 minutes , worst link of the day then biggest flameout/troll of the week , the mp3 bit in the middle , and then post of the week ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:11 AM on August 5, 2005


I think this is a great idea. Some thoughts:

-Taking turns seems to be the way to go, just keep a list of who's up for it and arrange a weekly Skype conference session for 4 selected users.
-What filmgeek said: the shorter the better. Maybe 10 minutes for discussion, which means you have to keep reminding the 'hosts' of this at every possible junction or they will just instinctively blabber on; and I personally would vote for leaving some room for ultra-short op-ed/column pieces, which could be handled on a "from our mailbox" basis. They'd have to be absolutely Metafilter-related, but for the rest it can be anything.


Also, I say we make EB the lone star of the first episode, but only give him, like, 30 seconds.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:17 AM on August 5, 2005


I kid because I love. And yes, I meant to say "juncture".

The sergeant's shout-out suggestion is kind of in tune with my op-ed idea, that can be the same thing in my imagination. As far as "featured posts" etc. goes, I'd personally prefer a more organic approach (i.e. the "sixpack approach"), where you have the hosts literally scrolling thru the blue/green and just discuss whatever anyone brings up.

Lastly, I'd go for Skype over physical meet-up any day, not in the least part because of my location.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:23 AM on August 5, 2005


I think Skype might kinda kill this. I dunno, it seems a bit stilted to have 4 or 5 people all on the mic, sitting at a PC, talking to each other about what's on the PC. I think some sort of meet-up would be required, maybe 2+ members who live close discussing things in person in an engaging way, then bring in some other commentators on Skype, or on pre recorded messages. Sorta like a phone in, but not at all, and anyone could submit a recorded comment on something. Maybe getting a bit overambitious.
posted by fire&wings at 5:40 AM on August 5, 2005


All the podcasts I've seen to date suck balls...

...but this one will be different, I just know it!!!1

Heh. Well, I'm still not convinced. But since others are willing to do it, have fun.

My only thought would be to add content that we don't already have on-site. 10 question interviews or mini bio-features on interesting mefites... or something like that.
posted by crunchland at 6:17 AM on August 5, 2005


A gossip segment would be fun. : >
posted by amberglow at 6:44 AM on August 5, 2005


and definitely some blind items.
posted by amberglow at 6:44 AM on August 5, 2005


like amber and paris discussing the political threads
and have jon linking it all up


that wouldn't be podcasting, more like being a war correspondent.
posted by jonmc at 6:56 AM on August 5, 2005


Some thoughts;
1) You can have a monologue and you can have a dialogue. Any more than that, and it gets too complicated for audio.
2) Personality is key, and more important than voice or reading ability.
3) Multiple hosts, complicated segments, interviews and other complications will probably sink the project.

Here's what we do on the radio in Madison, which would translate directly to the MetaFilter podcast idea.
posted by Floydd at 7:14 AM on August 5, 2005


Should we be discouraged that you made two last May, and haven't made another one since?
posted by crunchland at 7:35 AM on August 5, 2005


Another vote for the wonderchicken. I've heard his voice and he'd be perfect.
posted by deborah at 7:45 AM on August 5, 2005


Bandwagon.
posted by me3dia at 8:45 AM on August 5, 2005


Whenever I've been on the radio I've sounded quite nice, though I say so myself, but only after the BBC boffins have micro-edited out the ums, ahs, hmmmns and tortuous pauses - that's the biggest problem with amateur podcasts, I think, the endless vocal tics. Maybe the MeFicasts could be sent to a pro for editing?!

Anyway, I'd be up for a wee bit of bantercasting if this gets off the ground. Assuming this Skype thing is easy to work out.
posted by jack_mo at 8:45 AM on August 5, 2005


Maybe now would be a good time to actually listen to the digg podcast, keeping in mind that one (or both?) of these guys are professional broadcasters.
posted by crunchland at 8:57 AM on August 5, 2005


Here's another idea: Mefi Minutes.

On the Open Podcasting model, an easy submission page allows each member to either upload a file or call in and leave their audio in the hopper, say, once a week (or day, or whatever the optimal frequency would be). The kick is that everybody has exactly 60 seconds. The "podcast" is a simple concatenation of these, lasting however many minutes as there are submissions for that edition.

Granted, this would be a far cry from the sitting-around-with-a-sixpack bantering model, but on the other hand, once coded (easily, I think) it would run pretty much all by itself, without need of any additional equipment, training, committees to make decisions, etc. Automatic "ShowNotes" would simply indicate who posted the respective minutes, in order.

Even if it wouldn't work as the Mefi Podcast, it would still be a fun experiment. As you can imagine, I'm a big fan of the creative power of arbitrary constraints, and there's a lot of interesting stuff you can do in a minute's worth of audio.
posted by soyjoy at 9:11 AM on August 5, 2005


Oh, I like soyjoy's model.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:20 AM on August 5, 2005


Should we be discouraged that you made two last May, and haven't made another one since?
posted by crunchland


No, there's been a new show every week since 1988, broadcast on 89.9 FM, WORT, Madison WI Friday afternoons at 1 pm.
It's just the posting of the audio on-line that's far beyond our pathetic abilities to actually follow through. Fans do it out of the kindness of their hearts.
The show is just two guys (either Mel and Mr. Smarty Pants or Mel and me) talking about stuff found on the internets.
Our format is limited to the banter of just two people, and antithetical to the MeFi culture. soyjoys' model would be more truly MeTa and no one would have to put up with anything really annoying for more than a minute.
If we could make soyjoys' concept work it could make for an exciting, interesting, and eclectic show.
posted by Floydd at 9:31 AM on August 5, 2005


I like soyjoy's model too and I also want to mention that I'm willing to do some basic audio work. I.e., how about a short leader of some different users saying "This is Metafilter Minutes"?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:02 AM on August 5, 2005


I really like the Metafilter Minutes idea. 60 seconds is actually quite a bit of time. I assume that users would be limited in the number of minutes they can upload? (1/week or so?)
posted by absalom at 11:23 AM on August 5, 2005


This could be really fun, the key is to get fun people though. You definitely need to find the "I want to party with you" types to make this good though, and no one who thinks in-jokes are funny. There's a fine line in the world of Internet comedy and it must not be crossed. I just listened to the digg guys (dude!) and they do seem to have a good idea of flow even if they have too many asides. I don't get the 60 second thing, that's way too short.

I actually have faith in mathowie, as he does everything as simply and untethered as possible. He let's nature sort itself out, and in a "look at me" thing like this, it should work just fine. Let people submit whatever they want and let us chose what we want to hear.
posted by geoff. at 11:44 AM on August 5, 2005


Mefi Minutes! That's a pretty simple and elegant structure, soyjoy. I like.

And I imagine that starting from the simple constraint of 60 Seconds Of Audio we'd see an interesting set of modes and genres emerge. Audio collage, yo!
posted by cortex at 12:01 PM on August 5, 2005


I would also like to throw my support towards soyjoy's Mefi Minutes automated approach - very clever, very simple.
posted by odinsdream at 12:16 PM on August 5, 2005


Yeah, soyjoy's approach sounds really interesting.
posted by selfnoise at 12:20 PM on August 5, 2005


I would be into this, bigtime!
posted by ParisParamus at 1:33 PM on August 5, 2005


paris and amber - together at last !
posted by sgt.serenity at 1:54 PM on August 5, 2005


"paris and amber - together at last !"

STOP HURTING METAFILTER.

/jonstewart
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:35 PM on August 5, 2005


its myself i'm really hurting , crash.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:57 PM on August 5, 2005


crasher got it right... no Crossfire on the MetaCast. Ever.

Another really really bad idea would be dramatic readings of trainwreck threads by users other than the original contributors.

The MetaMinutes proposal is good, but I'd allow 2 minutes, just because I haven't written anything in years that can be read in a minute... (A million years ago I worked with a radio talk show host who sequestered his most regular callers into a Saturday Night show in which they were each allocated 3 minutes - complete with countdown sfx - and it was very entertaining - to me and about 15 people other than the Regulars...)

Of course, we could require all contributors of each week's MetaMinutes to keep to a pre-announced topic, ala "This American Life" ("Tales of Non-Immediate Family" "It Was Too Good to Be True" "Embarrassing Purchases" "Least Favorite Technology")
posted by wendell at 3:01 PM on August 5, 2005


Hm; might be interesting. I've thought about doing this sort of thing from time to time (more for my own thing, rather than for MeFi since, well, just saw this post) but yeah; could be interesting for, say, the more media related posts, especially if we were to cut in samples of music from the music-posts, say.

But I'm just saying that because I'm a music geek mainly. And I don't know if that'd be a headache w/r/t licensing type stuff, just because, well, not sure how On The Up And Up we wanna be.

But yeah -- it'd be fun, since I used to do this every week for radio shows. So, it'd just be shorter and more internet-y. But I don't know. Could be fun.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 3:19 PM on August 5, 2005


Of course, we could require all contributors of each week's MetaMinutes to keep to a pre-announced topic, ala "This American Life"

*Finally*, someone mentions the TAL word. Seriously though, maybe this is a good idea, to kind of keep a topic together.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:25 PM on August 5, 2005


"I'd allow 2 minutes, just because I haven't written anything in years that can be read in a minute."

Reminds me of the scene in The Big Chill, where Goldblum's character says something to the effect of "We only have one editorial rule: You can't write anything longer than the average person can read during the average crap. I'm tired of having all my stuff read in the can."

Kline: "People read Dostoyevsky in the can."

Goldblum: "Yes, but they can't finish it."
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:26 PM on August 5, 2005


wow, I really like *the soyjoy model* - a minute segment (or 1-2 minutes a la wendell) would almost be like an audio post, and strung together, might make for nice little audio collages. Sounds like a way to involve the maximum amount of people, too.
posted by madamjujujive at 4:31 PM on August 5, 2005


wow. Guess I better find a microphone for my Powerbook. Or, can I just use headphones plugged into the mic jack--that worked in 1975, etc....
posted by ParisParamus at 4:57 PM on August 5, 2005


PP - you had a Powerbook in '75? Wow.

(Sorry, I have been reading the Singularity thread in the Green for too long.)

But really, c'mon guys! What's next - an actions & items list? A (sub)domain? A wiki?

Let's make this thing work!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:02 PM on August 5, 2005


The best way to do it remotely is by Skype or whatever, but have each guy record it locally as well and mix it after.

I happen to have a recording rig that'll work, but I'm not a Mefi celebrity and don't have The Voice.
posted by abcde at 5:40 PM on August 5, 2005


ParisParamusPod.

No, silly, it was some pair of AKG dynamic headphones plugged into a cassette deck bought at Tech Hi-Fi. Memories.....
posted by ParisParamus at 6:22 PM on August 5, 2005


Two words:

Condenser Mic.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:26 PM on August 5, 2005


There's nothing wrong with experimentation. Maybe we should try a few different kinds of things and see what is most popular?

My opinion is that to be successful, a mefi podcast would need to be interesting enough to be popular to listen to, and popular (and accesible) to participate in. (Wow, that's an awful sentence.)

I completely disagree with those who say that a group podcast would be Bad and an individual doing the podcast would be Good. Unless we pick one or two really good voice talents, and they are reliable, it'll be boring. And if we did that, then making the podcast would be exclusionary.

Instead, I think that a group podcast of 30 minutes a week with some ground rules about how to behave would be good. If you're not funny or interesting, shut up. Don't spend too much time on an individual post. Some argument is fine, but when you move to the next post, all is forgotten.

For those doing it, I also suggest Skype at a scheduled time a week with a scheduled group of about six mefites, of which probably four will show up. Anyone who wants to do it is allowed to do it, on a first-come, first-served basis. I suspect those that are uncomfortable doing it and don't do it well will self-select themselves away from it.

I have both commercial radio and commercial audio production experience. It's been years and years, but my voice is probably better and I imagine I still know how to speak professionally (less verbal tics, as mentioned above). I'd like to think I can be funny, but as a jock I wasn't particularly funny, I was just professional and soothing. I might be well suited for a moderating role, though.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:45 PM on August 5, 2005


Ethereal Bligh: "If you're not funny or interesting, shut up."



I kid because I love, seriously.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:59 PM on August 5, 2005


If you're not funny or interesting, shut up.

I gotta disagree with this edict. As MCD so gently pointed out, not everyone is the best judge as to whether, and when, he or she is funny or interesting. The point of an arbitrary constraint like a minute is that no one is going to get very boring inside of 60 seconds, and if they do, by the time that's true you'll know you only have a handful of seconds to wait for them to be shooed offstage. Meanwhile, many people who aren't "funny or interesting" in a conventional way, and who would be scared away by this pronouncement might chip in a 60-second bit that turns out to be cool to most people, and incredible to one or two.

I'm not wedded to "the soyjoy model," of course, but I do believe we're setting ourselves up for a big loss of inertia if we go with any kind of qualified-golden-voiced-professionals-only-let's-agree-on-ground-rules-to-divide-up-the-spotlight model. Sure, people who aren't interested in trying to talk at the same time as five other people may well self-select away from that - but what would they have said if they had the mike all to themselves for a short while?
posted by soyjoy at 7:29 PM on August 5, 2005


Actually, goodnewsfortheinsane, I did Podcasting in 1976 and 1977. It was called amateur radio on 75 or 15 meters...
posted by ParisParamus at 8:42 PM on August 5, 2005


I agree with everything soyjoy just said.
posted by cortex at 8:48 PM on August 5, 2005


Hmm. Well, I just meant being aware of how you're sounding on-air and moving along if what you're saying isn't really working out.

I am kinda wedded to my model because I'm near-certain I don't have any interest in listening to a random mefite read the week's posts, or whatever. I would be quite interested, however, to hear a few people interact as they present the week's posts. Also, if there's a bunch of podcasts by different people, I'd be much less likely to listen than if there were one "official" podcast.

crash, I think I've said this before, but I see my (and everyone's) participation on mefi much differently than than a podcast or a coffee-shop conversation. No one here is required to be funny and there's no reason to require anyone to be funny because it's (mostly) not possible to monopolize the conversation to the exclusion to other people. A real conversation is very much give-and-take because even if you don't want to listen to the other person talk, you're kinda forced to. A podcast is even more explicitly constrained by being entertaining--that's the point. I don't expect anyone here at mefi to entertain me in their comments (but I do with their posts!), and I don't expect that of myself.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:28 PM on August 5, 2005


> If you're not funny or interesting, shut up.

I gotta disagree with this edict. As MCD so gently pointed out, not everyone is the best judge as to whether, and when, he or she is funny or interesting.


Okay, new edict. If you're not funny or interesting, or if you can't ever tell the difference between yourself being funny or interesting and yourself being boring, shut up.

Uhm. The diplomatic version of this post would be: I agree with EB. (Gasp!) He seems to grasp the model that makes the most sense. A podcast doesn't need to be inclusive and make everyone happy and feel taken care of -- it needs to be good with what ingredients we have.

EB, it sounds like you have all the editing/engineering/whatever sewn up if we go with your model, but if you ever need anyone to handle the really esoteric weird technical bits (or hell, babble about subjects) let me know.. assuming we can go with this model..
posted by blacklite at 11:24 PM on August 5, 2005


Okay, I'll bite the bullet: here's my first attempt.

I'm not sure if this is what we're looking for, but I imagine different people do different things differently, and I guess that's okay. Anyhow, it's all I could cram into 1"17, and I hope it's at least mildy amusing for at least some of you. Feedback appreciated.

Also, I think we need a *system* for this, of course, instead of just a random bunch of MP3s, but I thought I'd get ourselves started.

Posts referenced:

Lucid dreams
The Game (and of course, The Game)
NYC pirates
SF zombies
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:38 AM on August 6, 2005 [2 favorites]


Yay!! Nice.
posted by taz at 9:12 AM on August 6, 2005


Why is it that I never sound like THAT on tape?
posted by cortex at 9:55 AM on August 6, 2005


That was great!
posted by Mid at 10:13 AM on August 6, 2005


wonderful, goodnews! (and great voice/accent!) : >

More MeFi Minutes, pls!
posted by amberglow at 11:24 AM on August 6, 2005


I'm going to do a gossip/blind items minute--email me your scurrilous gossip and stuff. ; >
posted by amberglow at 11:25 AM on August 6, 2005


Can someone pod cast this thread please? I have a long drive ahead of me. Thanks.
posted by parallax7d at 12:36 PM on August 6, 2005


There's always the Metafilter-Astoria Podcast...
posted by Captaintripps at 3:42 PM on August 6, 2005


goodnewsfortheinsane, did you heavily edit that, or do you just normally sound like clips from a voicemail announciator?

I liked it, though. I'm just wondering about the sound.
posted by odinsdream at 5:04 PM on August 6, 2005


Sounds edited, odinsdream -- you can tell by the discontinuities in volume without a pause to breathe in between.
It's definitely amusing though. Maybe I could get to like the Mefi Minutes idea.

Perhaps we could, for a week, just keep spooling Minutes up onto the same mp3 -- everyone gets about a minute, but you can keep submitting more minutes as time goes on -- it would be like a thread. ... Although that might actually be kind of lame, I don't know.

I still would like to see some kind of group discussion on some threads.
posted by blacklite at 5:40 PM on August 6, 2005


Those (and others, of course) that expressed interest in a group podcast, let's organize one!

Skype does promise to be the best way to go about it (although conference calls are limited to five people) because I suspect the quality is best and, hopefully, the latency is least. All you need is a microphone and headphones (to avoid feedback).

What'dya say?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:08 PM on August 6, 2005


gnfti wins.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 7:24 PM on August 6, 2005


I say yes.
posted by Captaintripps at 6:42 AM on August 7, 2005


Thanks for the feedback all!

odinsdream: yes, this was heavily and audibly edited, mostly because I was kind of phrasing the story as I went along and I just wanted to put *something*online. If I did it again today I would have mastered the words better and probably could do it in one go.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:54 AM on August 7, 2005


Do it, q.
posted by LouReedsSon at 11:30 AM on August 7, 2005


Ha! GNFTI, I just got a chance to listen to that. Great stuff, and great radio voice - I could probably be persuaded that we should just hand the mike over to you for the whole podcast - were it not for the certainty that someone else has 1:17 worth of equally good stuff, but good in a diametrically opposite way.
posted by soyjoy at 7:35 AM on August 8, 2005


I am not so sure I like the idea, but so far as I can tell it can't hurt if someone does it. What I'd like to hear is podcasts of MeFi meetups. That would be funny.
posted by terrapin at 8:10 AM on August 8, 2005


Thanks, soyjoy.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:23 AM on August 8, 2005


holy shit, goodnewsfortheinsane. That was really, really good.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:08 PM on August 8, 2005


I think that any sort of MeFi podcast *must* be non-exclusionary. Metafilter : Community Weblog. Nothing spells death of "community" like having offical (tacit or otherwise) hierarchies. Not that MetaFilter shouldn't have Elder Statesmen, but they get that way through the power of their words, not their voice.
posted by absalom at 8:01 PM on August 15, 2005


Arrived late to the party, but I just wanted to say that this is a fine idea, provided the only people allowed to record are either European or Australian. No whiney Americans, please.

/whiney American

And goodnewsfortheinsane, that was like something from NPR's All Things Considered... simply phenomenal.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:11 PM on August 16, 2005


Man, that sets the bar REALLY high.
posted by smackfu at 11:01 AM on August 17, 2005


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