The below discussion took place as an interview with Founder and CEO Amit Doshi of IVM Podcast, IVM is one of the top quality content makers in India, especially in Podcasting. They produced more than 40 shows and their flagship shows Cyrus Says with Cyrus Brocha and The seen and the unseen by Amit Varma are listed as must listen to podcasts from India. (BuzzFeed India. 2016). Our discussion mainly involved in perspectives as a content producer, interest of their audience, market potential and value towards education in the future.
Hi Amit, How did you decide the duration of a show?
- We believe content is king, we let content to have its natural length, we don’t obstruct with a time limit, sometimes it kills the effectiveness and other times its nagging the episode. There are podcast of time duration around 5 mints to 1 hr to 1.5 hr of few. It depends on content and depths and how the host is covering it and how receptive audience is and one of the benefits of digital content is, it’s not tied to time limit because of resources and platform availability. We don’t have any specified criteria which are another benefit of Digital on-demand content platform.
Podcasting as a art or journalism?
- Podcasting is actually a craft, it needs the right amount of combination of both. Both are individually are a tool in a toolbox but combindely its a craft.
- You need to know how to converse as well as how the production and managing need to happen to have effective communication.
- Few people in the market say, record your voice, add BGM and you are good to go, but we believe it’s a craft, a perfect blend of many important details.
Do you think Podcasting is a time shift Radio or a New Media Technology?
- I don’t think, they contradict each other, its time shift rade as well as a newly developed structure of Media Technology.
- Radio is a mass medium and it doesn’t allow you to play with a niche audience, whereas podcasting in the other hand has a convenience of creating something in the similar line, it can be created to a mass audience as well as a very niche audience.
- Podcasting is an on-demand medium as well as a broadcasting medium, this convenience can’t be achieved or to be sustained in other formats that easily, so podcasting has its own space.
- One of the best examples is a podcast we produce called Geek fruit, it reaches to a niche audience.
- When we consider the concept of community radio, on the other hand, it’s an amazing tool but, its niche is through geographics not through interests or TG.
Do you think producing podcasting is less time consuming in human efforts in comparison with on demand video and other content creation sources?
- It’s a tricky question to answer, if you consider, human efforts in general then, of course, it’s less time consuming but the actual linea time it takes to get the content out properly shaped and ready to publish, then it takes almost similar time and efforts as a video content
- It also depends on what kind of video content are we talking about, the time and detailing as well as fact-checking procedure is more in videos that are more similar like Documentaries, Or any other tech-related show, but on in general, human efforts to produce and publish would be in similar lines, as well if you are talking about fiction its way more time consuming than podcasting for sure.
- Let’s say we want to create a show around IPL, it’s typically when the match starts we need to analyze and then once it’s over, we need to discuss and produce and deliver it by next day. In this process, it takes the same efforts as any other video production. It just that, in the video, initial stage, more people are working on it and in case of the podcast, people would be working on more on a later stage.
When you see evolution of podcasting, all the way from 2004 from apple, most of the content would be revolving around monolog or conversation, lets per say even after 10 years does the format works same or is any kind of further development we can see?
- I think there are already a lot of other formats of audio production, besides monolog and conversations, we have narrative podcasts, we have improved the content, documentary-style something like a homecoming, fictional narrative, there been and still happening joke shows, and there might be other formats that we still haven’t explored.
In video, there might be a possibility of copyrighting your content of pirating it, do you think that might be problem for audio industry?
- It’s actually not worth it, most of the audio content as a podcast is available for free, so there is no use of pirating or any such activities. Most common reason for piracy is non availability for common public, shows on premium streaming platforms like Netflix or Amazon or hot star have developed content and public want to consume by not paying charges or maybe some content made for The USA is not available in India, to that as an audience there are only 2 things to do, one to not to watch it or to pirate it. As in the case of podcasting, it’s free so most probably is not going to be a problem anytime soon.
Do you think, if there any regulations are controlling bodies on how content is developed in near future?
- It’s possible but depends, never say never but as of right now, it’s very difficult to do such thing, you wouldn’t be able to compare audio as same standards as video. Which means you need to start censoring youtube and not just that, all the other video platforms and all the other audio platforms, India is not China, it may not be practical to plan for something of that nature to be happening. If you ask me is that possible, I say everything is possible but if you ask me, is it likely then I would say it’s not really.
What’s your perspective on audio storytelling, audio books, podcasting in upcoming future? Following that, do you think this industry will grow to have a side to side comparison with video or to grow influencers and new set of celebrities through this?
- You will find, people making a career out of podcasting but it might not be possible to measure the numbers anywhere nearby to videos. 2 things to consider her in this point, video and audio consumption ways are different and monetization is different.
- People are wanting video content on higher numbers than podcasting, let’s face it video content needs full attention towards the display screen on what is to be discussed in the video, but in the other hand audio can be a part of your life, it can easily be blended. Even just before our conversation, while traveling I am listening to a podcast. But my primary activity is driving. This would not be a case for video application.
- This one feature or character will set paths for both the industry, podcasting as a blend in everyone’s daily life & Video needs your attention.
- On a nutshell, video, and audio as a content production would not compete with each other.
Future of podcasting in education industry?
- Education can be a really big space that podcasting can reach to and can grow, there is a huge potential to it and we are working on understanding to decode the system of communication and information consumption happening in this sector.
Vernacularly in Podcasting?
- Vernacularly is very important for an industry to grow, and it helps reach regional and niche crowds, but it’s an evolving process, in a country like India being reachable to everyone is a big task but the next best thing is to reach them through second biggest spoken language, that’s English. That’s the reason we are trying to produce more content on English, but it doesn’t mean that we are not going regional. We have a couple of Hindi shows, recently started with a Marathi show and Kannada show and we are soon coming up with the tamil show. And understanding the effectiveness we will surely expand it to more languages.
Comments on “I personally believe, every medium has its own pace and pitch like for example a recent International incident between USA and China is an issue you want to get an updated about. You Might use twitter for instant update on topics, News Paper on a detailed analysis, Television for Intensity of the situation and experts opinion, Social media for socialites perspective and Memes may be for effective information as an abstract. Maybe a podcast for a detailed one to one conversation in an undisturbed environment”
I completely agree with that, when we look into our past and how people use to consume information was mostly visual and audio, the proper combination of these both mediums designed to print, video, and audio media. And we can expect many more things from this combination and I can say that total no of people working in this industry with me and with other companies now will be grown in multiple of thousands soon and I am optimistic about it.
“End of Discussion”
My thoughts on above discussion
To add a perspective my this discussion, my brother is an assistant professor and an IAS aspirant, I forced him to try looking up or listening to podcasting. After few months, he said “ I might have consumed information I can do with 3 months of material if I would have read in 1 month by listening to it and the great thing is my brain is not cluttered. The good thing about podcasting, scientifically is we as a human being in our evolution process audio been a very effective tool of communication and it helped us understand things much faster than reading and this can be a really interesting time that we can see this concept expanding globally and reaching to different tire cities and rural region
Interview conducted and transcrpit by Sai Nikhil Dintakurthi
If you are interested to work with IVM Podcasts, then there are few positions available, checkwww.bmmguru.in/careers to know more.