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The Internet sets writers free…to get new audiences, and also to “dive into a giant flaming garbage pile”
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Hot Pod: What does an audio producer actually do, anyway?
Plus: Panoply grabs some big partners, question marks at Acast, and success in local podcasting through Hearken.
By Nicholas Quah
Hot Pod: If we want podcasting to remain open to everyone, we’re going to have to organize
Plus: A new call-in radio show aims to bring people together, a new sales partnership for PRX, and the benefits of doubling down on live programming for public radio.
By Nicholas Quah
At the BBC, the launch of in-app vertical video is a step toward connecting with new audiences
The BBC’s digital team worked alongside the editorial staff to shape the coverage and determine best practices for vertical video.
By Joseph Lichterman
Hot Pod: The three numbers that mark the state of podcasting in 2017
Plus: What new and returning shows to expect in the new year, Panoply launches an “imprint,” and a liberal podcast network tries to counterbalance conservative talk radio.
By Nicholas Quah
Iterate, iterate, iterate: How The Wall Street Journal made its push notifications more attention-worthy
A change in its preferred metric opened up a new approach to testing and tailoring.
By Joseph Lichterman
Hot Pod: Smart speakers, TV adaptations, newsier podcasts, and other things to watch for in 2017
Plus: The beginning of a podcast is incredibly important; the “gee whiz” podcast trend; is The New York Times swinging for a daily news show?
By Nicholas Quah
Slate’s Chrome extension helps identify fake news on Facebook — and lets readers flag it themselves
“This is Fake,” a project that emerged from a post-election hack day at Slate, defines “fake” news as “something intentionally misleading, intentionally false.”
By Shan Wang
Hot Pod: Is investigative reporting well served by podcasts?
Plus: Apple podcast stats; speed listening; #SupportPOCpods.
By Nicholas Quah
When 9.4 million followers isn’t enough: NBC News will shut down the Breaking News app on Dec. 31
“Experiments eventually need to sustain themselves and in this case, despite every effort, we just weren’t able to get there,” said Nick Ascheim of NBC News, which owns Breaking News.
By Nieman Lab Staff
Hot Pod: Macmillan’s new network shows how podcasts can be a logical next step for book publishers
Plus: “The number of potential distribution points for on-demand audio is kinda getting out of hand.”
By Nicholas Quah
Hot Pod: Should Apple become a more useful middleman for the podcast industry — and if so, how?
Plus: Podcast ad blindness, growth in the potential market for Audible Channels, and how audio ad dollars are seeking scale.
By Nicholas Quah
Quartz launches its Bot Studio with $240K from Knight, and plans for Slack and Echo
The Quartz Bot Studio (which the publication intends to maintain after the grant funding is used up) will develop new bots for messaging platforms like Slack and voice interfaces like Amazon Echo or Google Home.
By Shan Wang
Hot Pod: The indies weigh in on a podcast business gone pro (“Capitalism!”)
“The competition is getting tougher, and the top is crowded by podcasts that have teams and systems behind them. This is good in some ways!”
By Nicholas Quah
Mobile Majority: How phones are changing news
Hot Pod: What does an audio producer actually do, anyway?
Plus: Panoply grabs some big partners, question marks at Acast, and success in local podcasting through Hearken.
By Nicholas Quah
Hot Pod: If we want podcasting to remain open to everyone, we’re going to have to organize
Plus: A new call-in radio show aims to bring people together, a new sales partnership for PRX, and the benefits of doubling down on live programming for public radio.
At the BBC, the launch of in-app vertical video is a step toward connecting with new audiences
The BBC’s digital team worked alongside the editorial staff to shape the coverage and determine best practices for vertical video.
What We’re Reading
The New York Times / Farhad Manjoo
Clearing out the app stores: Government censorship made easier
“Blocking a website is like trying to stop lots of trucks from delivering a banned book; it requires an infrastructure of technical tools (things like China’s “Great Firewall”), and enterprising users can often find a way around it. Banning an app from an app store, by contrast, is like shutting down the printing press before the book is ever published. If the app isn’t in a country’s app store, it effectively doesn’t exist. The censorship is nearly total and inescapable.”
Variety / Janko Roettgers
It’s official: Twitter has shut down Vine
“Twitter had given users the chance to download their Vines through the service’s mobile app in recent weeks, but removed that feature from the new app Tuesday. Third-party tools that download Vine’s directly from the service’s website should still work, but are likely going to violate Vine’s Terms of Service.”
Business Insider / Oliver Darcy
Television personality Nancy Grace launches a digital media venture focused on crime news
True crime is a popular podcast genre, and Grace will be adding to the mix with a daily podcast of her own (“It will be the go-to for crime sleuths and people who want knowledge about crime and crime fighting,” she told Business Insider).
The Daily Beast / Matt Wilstein
The ‘Keepin’ it 1600′ guys launched a new media company that aims to challenge Trump
Former Obama administration staffers Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, and Tommy Vietor are back with a new podcast called Pod Save America, under the banner of their new company — Crooked Media.
Politico / Alex Weprin
New York Times reporter Michael Barbaro is moving to Times’ audio team
“We are thrilled to announce that Michael is now moving to audio fulltime. He is working closely with the Audio team to develop an exciting new project that will launch in early 2017.” (Could it be a daily news show?)
Digiday / Sahil Patel
‘Apps are the new magazines’: Why Bloomberg’s doubling down on apps
Other publishers are shutting down their mobile apps, but Bloomberg is doubling down: Starting with its redesigned flagship mobile app, Bloomberg plans to launch several new apps in the coming year with a focus on delivering personalized content to users.
Twitter
You can now create Twitter Moments on mobile
“With Moments, you can bring together your favorite Tweets, whether your own or someone else’s, to share your perspective on the topics you care about.”
Digiday / Max Willens
‘A classic commons problem’: Publishers are going notifications crazy
“Notifications are spreading, too. Updates to the Chrome and Firefox browsers over the past 18 months have made it possible for any publisher to send notifications to readers via their respective browsers; Safari allows this too, but only for desktop — publishers that want to slip onto their readers’ iPhone lock screens has to do so via Apple News, using the notifications company Urban Airship.”
The Guardian / Nathan Good and Chris Wilk
Introducing the Guardian Chatbot for Facebook Messenger
For now you can get your morning briefing (time-zone customized) or check-in for the latest headlines or most popular stories.
The New York Times
The New York Times debuts another podcast
Tell Me Something I Don’t Know,” a live event and podcast series hosted by Stephen Dubner of Freakonomics fame.
Nieman Lab is a project to try to help figure out where the news is headed in the Internet age. Sign up for The Digest, our daily email with all the freshest future-of-journalism news.