Editor, Daily Nexus,
Congratulations to Jack Yi and others who are only now becoming aware of podcasting (“Podcast Is the Next Step in Broadcasting,” Daily Nexus, April 17). I, as vice president of operations for the National Podcasting System, recognize his enthusiasm for the medium even if I didn’t fully agree with his definition of podcast. Indeed, podcasting is becoming a mainstream media to many even as others are only beginning to understand the idea. To the novice, podcasting may seem a brand new medium. However, while podcasting is still dominated by individuals who regard it similar to Internet radio, businesses and organizations including Disneyland, General Motors and Verizon have been using the medium routinely for commercial purposes. Moreover, podcasting is not limited to audio-only files as Mr. Yi implies. A growing number of individuals and companies are producing video podcast that can be viewed on iPods as well as computers, new generation mobile phones and other mobile devices. The ability to time shift and place shift the receiving of the messages gives podcasting its distinction from traditional radio or television. The podcaster can send a message whenever. The viewer or listener does not have to be connected to a computer when the message is delivered and can listen or watch whenever he or she wants.
The big advantage of podcasting, as regarded by business, is the ability to target messages precisely, dynamically, immediately and far, far cheaper than traditional media. My own company has made its business producing video podcasts for businesses and organizations, which means the medium has spawned its own industry. Podcasting has moved far beyond a curiosity into an important component of business communication.