Michelle Beadle to Bloggers to Jimmy Traina: Does Everyone Need a Podcast?

Gene ZarnickCorrespondent IMay 17, 2011

The Michelle Beadle Podcast
The Michelle Beadle Podcast

Have you checked out my latest podcast yet?

You haven’t?

Actually there’s no way you could have listened to it because I don’t have a podcast.

I actually attempted to start a podcast about two months ago, but it didn’t end up so well.

I got a guest, recorded a lengthy 90 minutes worth of material and I was ready to post it.  I opened up the file upon the completion of the discussion and I could hear myself loud and clear, but as for my guest, a low whisper was about all that was audible.

I spent another six hours attempting to resurrect the recording with Audacity.  It didn’t work.

At that moment I realized that my podcast career was over.

Maybe not everyone’s cut out to run their own show.  Book me as a guest.  I can talk sports for as long as you can record, but I’m never attempting another go at a Favre Dollar Footlongs podcast.

It’s a shame too; I had an amazing intro for it.

Does every blogger, every sports personality and every website really need a podcast?

It seems so.

Every week a new podcast arises onto the Internet, but for what purpose?

I think some people start podcasts because they see the success that other people have from doing them.

Others I believe start theirs because they want another medium to get their point across.

Then there are the podcasts that seem to start because their company wants to capitalize on their success.

For whatever reason they’re started, a podcast doesn’t seem unique anymore.  The same thing that happened with the blog boom is happening with podcasts and because of this, so many of them are basically conversations with no substance.

I was listening to Michelle Beadle’s new podcast, and her entire episode with Matthew Berry consisted of her asking him questions about how to run a podcast.

Is this really what I tuned in for?

How about I write a book and instead of writing anything with interesting content, I just have quotes from people telling me how to write a book?

Should I make a documentary film where I just go out and ask other people how to make a documentary and that’s what you get to watch?

Does Michelle Beadle really need a podcast?

Beadle works on SportsNation because first and foremost she is attractive, and secondly, she has a great personality.  People aren’t tuning into SportsNation each day for her point of view on sports issues though.  We enjoy the off-the-cuff nature of the show, mixed with opposing views from her and Colin Cowherd.

I’m sorry Michelle, but please stick to TV, a podcast doesn’t work for you.  On the other hand, her first guest, Linda Cohn, would be much better suited for a podcast.  Linda’s actually interesting to listen to.

Did Michelle really want to do a podcast, or was she pressured into doing one due to her success on ESPN?  I think you know what my thoughts are.

Jimmy Traina of Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks started a podcast within this past year for what reason?

Traina is known around the sports blogosphere for taking interesting sports-related links and videos and placing them in a column twice a day.  Most of the time people are emailing him the links so he doesn’t even have to search for them.  I love Hot Clicks, but never once have I thought, "hmmm, I wonder what Jimmy thinks about this sports issue?"

Hot Clicks—great, original idea.  Jimmy Traina podcast—opposite of Hot Clicks.

I’ve listened to Jimmy Traina on various podcasts discussing how Hot Clicks was created and the purpose of it.  The whole goal of his publication format is to bring us original, creative content that we don’t get to read about on the normal sports media sites.

How can someone whose career focuses on original content bring us a podcast that is so unoriginal? All the podcast offers is the exact same format as every other sports personality out there.

Get a notable guest, talk about some sports stuff that is going on, have them promote what their doing, the end.

Is anyone else bored with this format?

Many of my fellow bloggers, including some on the Bloguin network, are creating podcasts that are uninspired as well.

Some of the better ones have gone out and got guests that speak on specific issues that not every other site is talking about.

The majority of them are just going out and getting other bloggers on their podcasts each week.  It seems that the podcasts are used as a way for them to network with each other instead of using it as a resource to connect with their readers.

If you really want to go back and forth on each other’s podcast and recap the team’s performances from the past, then do so, but there are plenty of other people that are doing the exact same thing.  No matter who is doing it, recapping games is tiresome anyway.

I’m not saying that people shouldn’t do podcasts; some people are great at them.  Bill Simmons has found a way to talk sports, pop culture and have normal conversations with friends that is still captivating at the same time.  His approach is innovative.

Jason Whitlock started a podcast within the last year that at first I thought was terrible, but now it’s starting to grow on me.  Although I’d rather not hear his terrible rap intro at the beginning that includes the lines, “It’s more then bald heads, it’s more then baggy shorts, it’s more then taking advantage of kids and raggedy sports.  It ain’t bout controversy, more like stating the facts, yep; the difference is you hold your tongue and he tell you its whack.”

That’s the intro you’re going with?

I still don’t think he necessarily needs a podcast to express the opinions, but at least the guests that are on his podcast, and the discussions that he has, are thought-provoking and not typical dialogues that every other site is having.

So all I can say to anyone out there who has a podcast or is contemplating starting a one; try something different.  Just because everyone seems to be doing it one way doesn’t mean you have to.  Podcasts are a new enough medium that there is no right or wrong yet to be successful.

I’m glad my podcast career came and went without anyone hearing an episode.  It seems like not having a podcast is actually one of the most original things you can do these days.

And I’m all about being original.


    Iconic Sports Illustrated Writer Deford Dies at Age 78

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    Iconic Sports Illustrated Writer Deford Dies at Age 78

    Tyler Conway
    via Bleacher Report