Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Workshop Podcasting for development

On January 15th 2008 some e-collaboration collegues explored the possibilities of podcasting during a workshop facilitated by Marlies Bedeker from PSO and Mark Fonseca Rendeiro, alias Citizen Reporter.
A podcast is an audio (or video), distributed over the internet with RSS feed. The use of RSS allows for easy subscription by readers (listeners). It is a relatively new medium of communication, it was only invented in 2004! Listeners can download new episodes automatically, for instance by using itunes.

During the workshop we concentrated on being a podcaster. How to produce a podcast? Why podcasting in development cooperation? How could we do that and what are the benefits and challenges?

A great advantage of podcasts is that they do not necessarily follow official media. Anyone can podcast so they provide excellent opportunities for personal messages and storytelling, such as those from Christian Aid relief workers reporting on field visits or Ryanne who communicates her experiences about her visit to organisations in Thailand. Listening to these stories immediately creates a feeling of closeness, like your listening to a friend. I personally experienced that this personal, friendly atmosphere adds power to the message, simply because it is personal.

These and other examples provided inspiring food for thought for our discussion on possibilities, benefits and challenges when podcasting for development. It seems that podcasts have a lot to offer. Addressing those who prefer to listen, let beneficiaries report on development results and enhance the personal character of information.

In Dutch: During the workshop Angelica Senders, Programme Specialist Capacity Development for the Economical Programme of ICCO, and Wilma Muns, webmaster at ICCO, enthusiastically discussed the advantages of podcasts and the possibilities they see to apply them in their work for ICCO.
Click her to listen to their discussion

In Dutch: Simon Koolwijk, Senior Advisor in Capacity Building for Facilicom Consult, explains us how he was inspired today and why he believes podcasts can improve knowledge sharing worldwide.
Click here to listen to his thoughts about podcasting

In Dutch: Joitske Hulsebosch, freelance consultant social media and learning environments, shares her vision on why she thinks podcasts can make a substantial contribution in the communication for development.
Click to listen to her vision on podcast as a tool for communication

Mark is an experienced and dedicated podcaster. Why should development organisations engage with podcasting? Joitske Hulsebosch posed him this question. If you click on the video you can see his 3 minute answer.

Producing podcasts can be easy and quick. With a computer, headset and the free audacity software it is easy to record a conversation, story or interview and add some background music if you like. Interesting for the sector of development cooperation is that conversations, interviews or stories can be pre-recorded with voice recorder for later production with audacity. Anyone can produce podcasts; professional knowledge on broadcasting and podcasting isn't necassary. According to Mark imperfectness is even the beauty of podcasts.

More inspiration on podcasting for development can be found on Global Voice.



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