Saturday, May 2, 2009

A rant against podcasts

I'm fed up with the news articles that give you content in the form of podcasts*. I want text back.
* equals "recorded voice", for simple

Here is why:
  1. The only advantage I get over text is the voice of the reader or the interviewed guy. It's not an advantage at all.
  2. Text underlines what's most important. Voice gives me all, interesting and uninteresting. It's the sign of a lazy news reporter.
  3. With text, I can rewind or go fast forward in a blink, without even a mouse click. I can read the same sentence three times if I don't get its meaning easily.
  4. When I get a text, many paragraphs appear on my screen at once, so I can just take a two-seconds-look and tell whether the article is about a matter of my interest or not. With a podcast, I have to listen to it during thirty seconds or more to be sure.
  5. If I am looking for a precise subject, I can press Ctrl+F and look for a word in a text. The same is not possible in a podcast. In most cases, I can search the content of the text directly from my search engine. The podcast is not integrated with search engines.
  6. I am a fast reader, I can read and understand a text three times faster than a good speaker speaks it. (And if he spoke it so fast, I would probably not understand him...)
  7. When I read news, I have ten tabs open at the same time, a RSS reader, a few PDFs loading... Podcasts are using my bandwidth for something that could be done in a few hundred bytes! I call it abusing my bandwidth.
I hope the fashion of reporting news in podcasts will decrease with time. Who knows?