Google, Spotify, Connie Chan discussed on Software Engineering Daily


To software engineering daily. I'm so excited to be here. I know you it's mutual. I mean most of the time with a podcast broadcast. You have the ace symmetric intimacy. We actually have. Yes symmetric asymmetric intimacy. We actually know each other right. It's really funny when people come up up to you now feel like they know you and you're like. I don't know who you are but it's also great at the same time you host the sixteen z podcast. Why did it make sense for a venture capital firm to start a podcast. It's a really good question so first of all the broader context for the podcasts as white as a v._c. Firm have an editorial operation and the reason for that is that a six and z has always had a culture of writing and communicating and sharing ideas well before we built an editorial operation that was here before i even joined and and then there's this trend of a lot of i used to joke when i was at i was at wired at the time that it's really funny v._c._r. The new editors and it kinda said it in a snarky way because i felt like who are these people that think they know it's up in us. Editors have more things to say but then i realized that they were talking about more leading versus lagging indicators others and i got frustrated because i felt like i'm focusing on lagging indicators in my narrative work and i would like to go back to leading indicators which is why it came to a six z so before i joined there was another journalist who was here and i joined as editors and the model sorta shifted to more editing other people than storytelling in the third persons we went to a first person send model and that takes me to why a podcast so to answer your question why we did a podcast it actually existed three months before i even joined and and the it was i believe the brainchild of chris dickson and then kim lhasa vich and michael copeland helped with getting off the ground and it was intended to start off just sort of hallway conversations and dixon was an early blogger and so i believe that podcasting sort of potentially the next evolution of blogging and being able talk intimately but really started as an experiment but the night took over shortly after joining in the production and it's been growing since what lessons from the history of blogging apply to podcasting oh. I love that question jeffrey. I'm so glad you're asking that because i think about this all the time so it's funny a a lot of people complain about the end bogging or the nostalgically think of the heyday of blogging. I kind of roll my eyes a little because i feel like you know what you're just missing talking to each other what i love about podcasting. Is there something more inclusive about it that anybody can listen to a podcast on a mobile phone and it's not to say that blogging wasn't accessible because if you think about the history of the printing press and how the printing press made what would formally very elite ideas more available in the form of mass books similarly lee blogging sort of took what we're quote formally elite ideas in the form of certain media outlets articles into the form of mass blogs but there was even though i loved the early wave of blogging a little bit of elitism to it where it felt it was very much a bunch of bloggers who would talk to each other. There wasn't really this shared sense of an experienced. The whole community was having one of the parallels in podcasting is that in many ways podcasting is the next evolution of blogging because of the intimacy podcast. They're so intimate. You're really in someone's ear. The other similarity is the authentic nature of the communication. You don't have to write like a five paragraph essay and have it perfectly edited so podcasting is very similar and and that sort of you're really hearing someone's voice. You can't fake that but what's different is that podcasting is to me like shared community and it's a movement like people are really following a movement. You have a completely different relation to the people are listening to to go deeper there. A sixteen zero recently had a series about podcasting. There was a long p._d._f. There's a long article two hour long episode with connie chan and nick kwa. Did you have any any reflections on the spirit of podcasting in its modern form today from all that research in that grinding on that data yeah i mean you had an amazing post which is on pod sheets and your view on open source podcasting. You also did like a great overview of all the different players in the industry and i thought that was great. I loved loved it and very aligned with a lot of my own views too so the podcast about podcasting it was me in connie nick as you noted and nicholas known for doing hotpot newsletter which is one of my favorites and i know you're nodding that's one of yours too and the report on investing in the podcast ecosystem in two thousand nineteen grew out of our internal deal team and was authored by legion who's on her deal team and she works very close with andrew chen. Who's one of general partners who's really interested in investing in podcasting startups and then avery seagal also authored a section in that report on podcasting casting china because it's huge in china and he works very closely with connie chan who's very interested in investing in podcasting startups and new media startups as well and then the third author was ben at karachi who did a lot of research on that report and they also really called a lot of the research out there so i wanna give a shout out to edison research. They produce the infinite dial study and tom webster. I've been following his work for like fifteen years. Is the main lead there in. It's a really thoughtful report so that's the context with that report. I think the big takeaways at a very high level are that podcasting is hitting a quote inflection point that it's becoming more mainstream now. I actually still don't think it's there. It's still very early. Days of my big reflection on modern podcasting is that it is becoming more mainstream but it is still phase one because we don't have the infrastructure that we need to really do podcasting well by that. I mean it's still lacks discovery. I mean how do you find a podcast. How do people find software engineering daily if they don't already know about exactly and as you know one of the ways people find podcast number one way to discover podcast is listen to other podcasts so that's basically how people find out then there's a complete lack of episodic discovery mrs or my big pet peeves. I don't believe everybody wants to follow. Every single episode of a podcast is not a serialized narrative show. They want topical things so what i want all the podcasts on quantum computing crafting fantasy novels and romance which are all things. I'm interested in kind of weird combo but i can't find that now so that's missing but what's some good news on this talking about modern podcasting is that google recently announced that they are transcribing podcasts which is a huge important move because now finally all that sort of dark voice for lack of a better phrase is is going to finally be indexed which will help a ton with the discovery side. How would you encapsulate the competitive dynamics between apple spotify google well first of all. None of this is investment advice. I am not an investor. I'm commenting on mainly. The trends of these companies being really containers of interesting models that are happening in the podcasting industry. Sorry so it's funny because i've never seen this before where three platforms at all have the opportunity to own space seem to be really doing very different things so so spotify. It's really interesting because they have very openly said they wanted really grow podcasting. The ceo daniel is on the public record talking about in a speech. He gave this year about what all the investments are making. You know they acquired gimblett. Obviously they acquired anchor. All people whose work i've been following for a long time and they're realizing that audio wpro is music and podcasting and they're two different things and that's super important and they're obviously clearly thinking about the user generated side of things hence the acquisition of anchor so a lot of people will often say that they have to become the youtube of podcasting which they have a lot of potential for but i think what's really interesting about spotify always had really creative ways of thinking about a person's whole audio profile for the day and i believe third piece of this that is not currently in there is audio books because to me the definition of podcasting lasting in connie beliefs as to is. It's not just technically quote podcasts audiobooks. That's other audio. It's spoken-word basically not words that are sung spotify has a really unique opportunity because of their model with playlists and their ability to do more creative things on the recommendation side then google will have a really interesting play because as their their model has always been to index the world's information the ability to index podcasts is huge and i recently heard that there are more people coming to podcast ask via google then via spotify. I wanna double check. This stat google has an advantage. I'm be transcription side and being able to search and find podcasts and then the third player apple huge fan of that team by the way james boggs. Those guys in the past apple hasn't really invested deeply and podcasting. You know the classic story. There's like two people in the department winner by people or whatever it is it seems that they are now but the thing about apple is at because of their big position on protecting user privacy. They're not gonna do some other things that podcasters want which is like the ability to communicate with fans like to be able to send out an email for instance update to your fans and by the way none of these three are hosting platforms. They're all distribution platforms right. None of them are actually upload your podcast to spotify google or apple. They're basically taking second all the feeds. What is your provision for podcasting becoming social and is an inevitability. I do believe podcasting should be social inherently even though it's not i know elite. Our partner in the deal team also believes in social podcasting so far one of the leading social podcasting apps breaker but i think there's a lot of interesting innovation still what happened on this in this space. I'm interested in two things on that front. I definitely want the graph of people there's a classic thing you always ask other people what other podcast podcast you listen to and find out through word of mouth like here are the podcast that i want to hear but i'm also interested in people coming around live events around podcasting and sort of coming together in that that frame but for me and other piece of it as a creator. How do you communicate with your fans like right now. I'm in a room with two people sometimes recording something and dan. I can't engage with them so when i go on public and they're like we went self as we want to hang out is really cute and really weird and completely mind boggling that this happens but i would love to be able to continually early because if you think about it it's again movement. You're creating a world view in a glimpse into our world and how to think about tech imagine if we could send updates to them via apps apps and various things cruise is a san francisco based company.

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