Monday, February 22, 2010

Cocktail Chatter

This week, one of my favorite modes of getting news, Slate Magazine Daily Podcasts, has asked their listeners to recruit new listeners. Since I love this podcast series, and since I want them to succeed, this is my attempt to participate, and the chance to win fame and fortune in so doing. is an online news magazine owned by the Washington Post. It's a pretty good online read, but frankly I have little time for it. The podcasts, however, are another story. They gather three editors to discuss three topics and end with a recommendation from each of them about something interesting to read, do, see, think about. Each episode is about 30 minutes.
I get the podcasts from itunes, which automatically downloads the episodes every time I open it up and then it goes onto my ipod and I can listen at my leisure. The episodes are grouped into topics such as politics, culture, sports, finance and women's issues (sorry, their site is a mess and I couldn't find the link for this one but it's called Double X), and every now and then they do an hour long book club. Apparently they also have a weekly poetry podcast which is not included in my itunes daily downloads so I don't know if it's any good. Each series is produced separately, with different editors, and has a cute name like Political Gabfest, Hang Up and Listen (sports), Every Day I Read the Book (finance), Money Talks (also finance) etc. Each of these also have separate fan pages on Facebook, where further discussion can be found, if you are so inclined.

The editors are smart and funny, and present the news of the week in a lively discussion format. One of the Political Gabfest editors is John Dickerson who has the best twitter feed in the twitterverse.

The Slate podcasts are sponsored by and I suspect that this promotion to gain new listeners comes directly from audible's desire to see a growing audience to cement their continued sponsorship. They have, in all likelihood, scraped what they can in terms of new customers from the current listenership.

So if you give it a listen (either directly from their website, or you can sign up with itunes - it's free), please let me know. If you need help figuring out how to use a podcast, ask me, I listen to several different ones and love the medium.

Plus, if any good stories come out of this, I can enter to win a lunch with the gabfest hosts, which would be the best prize I could imagine and ultimately, my selfish reason for writing this post. So please post a comment or send me an email about your experience with slate podcasts and if I win, you can come with me to the lunch.

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