Stobbie is gonna sit down and try to explain what he thinks a podcast is…

Fair City Podcast Network is a group based in Perth that aim to help people discover and/or create podcasts.

First things first, I’ve only been doing this since 2016 – I’m not an expert in any way, shape or form. However, during this time I’ve been frequently asked the same questions which I’m going to try and answer below. 

Edit: I also wrote this at the start of the first lockdown in 2020, but it’s taken me this long to pluck up the courage to post it… Some of the shows might be out of date and I know there’s more popped up locally since.

What Is A Podcast?

This is one I get asked the most. What is this little podcast thing you do? Not usually intended as condescending as it comes across I assume. There’s lots of definitions of podcasts out there – modern day equivalent of audioblogging from the 80s, a portmanteau of iPod and broadcast etc.

My answers vary from “Kinda like a home made radio show” to “a catalogue of shows that cover any topic imaginable and there is somewhere around a million of them because anyone can do them” depending on who asks but really, to me, a podcast is simply audio of someone’s passion. People don’t say “I really hate this topic, I’m gonna start a podcast on it” unless they really hate themselves. People realise that they talk about something a lot and think “I could record this stuff, especially if I got together with <insert name of equally passionate person> for it”

For me it’s also about community. I learned very early on that podcasters are a great bunch – there’s unwritten rules on the socials (99% of the time) that homemade (indy) podcasts will like and share each other’s content. This idea of resource pooling is what led us to start thinking about creating a network of podcasts, almost like a local directory, with a group of people supporting and cross-promoting each other’s shows.

Where Can I Listen to Podcasts?
This is the usual follow up question. There are so many ways to listen to podcasts, mostly driven by the iTunes directory. Anyone with an iPhone can search on their pre-installed Podcast app to access this directly, but lots of other “podcatcher” services us this directory too. Podcast Republic, one of the first podcasting apps I used, is one example of a service that links straight into iTunes.

Podbean is a host that will feed into the directory as well, but can also host podcasts which aren’t shown there (if the podcaster has decided not to list on iTunes for whatever reason). Spotify is a common place for people to listen to podcasts as well, and is the owner of – which is a free hosting platform. Podcasting Insights has a good list here for you to find the best podcatcher for you.

Most podcatchers have a “subscribe” or “follow” button – this will allow you to keep up to date with latest episodes when they’re published. Depending on the app you use you’ll have the option to be notified of new episodes, automatically download them or just have them sitting ready for you next time you open the app.

Episodes? Do Podcasts Have a Structure?
Podcasts are structured like TV shows.

You get some that are long-running and have regular episodes released on a schedule like A Bloody Mess Podcast. Others have seasons just like a BBC drama such as The Science of Fiction podcast, which has seasons of 5 episodes at a time. Others are limited runs like Jacobite Clans, which ran for 15 episodes before ending at around the same time as the exhibition at the museum. Some just put them out whenever – like Fair City Podcast – and some mix up both regular and sporadic like The American Fitbaw Cast.

I think that’s part of the fun of indy podcasts – they can be released as and when the podcaster wants.

What Do You Mean By Indy Podcast?
Basically any homemade podcast. There are a lot of professional podcasts produced by teams of people with celebrities or radio presenters, but I prefer the hobby aspect of hearing real people with flawed audio quality and mistakes, fun and a human touch.

What Is A Host?
Yeah, I’ve mentioned them a few times now, I should probably explain that too. A podcast host is a web service where podcasters store their audio files, episode artwork, episode descriptions and other details. The hosts then create a file that points podcatchers and directories to their files and information. If you’re looking to start your own podcast, you can get in touch with us for a more detailed discussion about hosts among other things.

Are There Podcasts in Perth?
As far as I’m aware, podcasts emerged in 2016 in Perth with Cheynecast (March 2016) and The Buff Geek Podcast (July 2016). Since then, I’ve been keeping an eye out for new ones so I can recommend them to people. At the time of writing, there are 18 active podcasts that I’m aware of locally:

Please let me know if I’ve missed out any – it’s not an easy thing to Google. I’m also aware of up to 3 new projects in the pipeline (at the time of writing this!) so keep an eye out on our website for them too.

You Finished Going On About Podcasts Yet?

Nearly. I guess I’d summarise with the following:

Find a podcast you love, listen with one of the apps, tell your friends.

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