Thursday, May 04, 2006

CBC's expanded podcast lineup

As I have mentioned before the CBC's podcast lineup has been woefully inadequate for some time. I say this only slightly tongue-in-cheek, given that podcasting has only really been around for, a couple of years. Given the CBC's chronic underfunding and the fact that most of their resources are going into producing the Stanley Cup Playoff broadcasts these days, I suppose they can be forgiven for not setting the trend. But compared to other public broadcasters, they are definitely dragging their heels.

Well, that has now changed, at least somewhat, with the announcement yesterday that Canada's public broadcaster has expanded its offering to 22 podcasts. They have a series of seven daily podcasts, with a different one updated every day of the week; these include the excellent program Ideas, as well as other more newsy programs such as Dispaches, The Current and As It Happens.

A second series, called "Features" has five podcasts, most of which compile segments of CBC programs around a common theme. For example, the Words at Large podcast features snippets of literary interviews culled from a variety of programs. (Incidentally, I was not that impressed with this particular podcast. The host talked too much, and the interviews were truncated to the extreme. It was more frustrating than anything else. I'll be dropping the producer an e-mail for sure).

A third series has roundups of local news and stories from various regions of Canada.

Overall, I'd say it's a promising start. I'm particularly thrilled that I can now listen to Ideas at my leisure; this podcast will surely be on my weekly must-listen list. Now, if they would only get Writers & Co. for download, I'd be completely satisfied.

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