Friday, June 03, 2005

Why Podcasting should be Podcasting

I have seen many comments and postings in the blogosphere that don't like the term "Podcasting" for the publishing of audio content on the Internet. Podcasting has an obvious bias towards the ipod as the delivery mechanism for this content, but the truth is you can listen to these mp3 audio files on almost any device or media. I make the argument that "podcasting" has been used by the inventors, creators, listeners and media since the phrase was coined last year. With all the buzz and rapid movement of the community, podcasting has made its way into the mainstream. An important foundation of this art form is that there is a generally accepted convention in how we communicate. I know people may use the terms "audio Blogging", "audio magazine" or if Bill Gates controlled the world "Longhorncasting", but podcasting fits. It is unique, and has the kind of recognition as "blogging".

So there will be the critics that say it does not really describe the activity or art form very well and there is that Apple bias that most window users just can't get over, but Podcasting is a brand and a brand usually doesn't describe the product very well.

Think about how making photocopies turned into "Xeroxing" back when that technology was new. Did the fact that people (wrongly according to Xerox--see below) used the phrase Xerox make Xerox sell more copiers or put Toshiba or any other Photocopy machine manufactures out of business? I think not.

I don't think Podcasting will go away soon and I think podcasting will stick as the term to describe the activity, so all you windows fans or Apple haters out there just enjoy the technology and keep listening to great content.

Looking up Xerox I found this tid bit on what Xerox thinks of the use of their brand name to make photocopies:

"The success of the Xerox brand has led to the terms "a Xerox", "to Xerox", "Xeroxed", and "Xeroxing" being used synonymously for the product/act of photocopying. The company does not condone such uses of its trademark, and is particularity concerned about the ongoing use of Xerox as a verb as this places the trademark in danger of being declared a generic word by the courts. The company is engaged in an ongoing campaign to convince the public that Xerox should not be used as a verb. To this end, the company has written to publications that have used Xerox as a verb, and has also purchased print advertisements declaring that "you cannot "Xerox" a document, but you can copy it on a Xerox Brand copying machine."

Although Podcasting does not use a trademark, Apple, suehappy lately, may go after all you people using the term podcasting saying "you cannot Podcast a show, but you can listen to a audio file on a Apple Brand [I]pod".

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