Would You Pay For RTE’s Podcasts?

Niamh Doohan had a small piece in yesterday’s Sunday Independant (which I actually found time to read) with the heading ‘RTE may cash in on podcast success‘. This news comes in the same breath that RTE are ditching their medium wave service, at a reasonable annual saving too to the national broadcaster (around a million euro a year).

However, yesterday’s article suggests that

…RTE’s own website may be outstripping traffic on Apples’s online store iTunes, the creators of podcasting. The leaked statistics from Montrose show its top 10 podcasts broke the three million mark in just nine months last year…

While I would argue the idea of Apple being the creators of podcasting, it’s worth noting that this is only considering traffic from RTE’s website, nothing at all to with traffic from iTunes where RTE’s ‘Nob Nation’ is one of the top downloaded podcasts in the country.

With RTE saving money in one area they’re obviously on the look out for money elsewhere. There’s been enough rows and debates over increases in TV license fees in recent times and with reported dips in TV advertising revenue in recent years as well, can we expect in 2008 to see RTE turning their podcasts into “pod-cash”? Podcast-only advertising deals? Podcast sponsors?

Would you

  • Pay an annual fee to subscribe to RTE’s podcasts via RTE?
  • Continue to download RTE’s podcasts if the advertising in shows increased?
  • Pay-per-podcast for specific shows? Perhaps free highlights and a nominal fee for a full download?

Personally, no. The only way I could imagine myself paying for podcasting material is if it was in an educational environment. i.e. part of an online course. I can accept people sponsoring podcasts (e.g. a sponsor’s plug at the beginning of the show / end of show or a subtle drop during the show) but I’m not overly keen on dropping full length commercial adverts into podcasts. If I wanted that sure I’d just listen to the radio…

Do you even listen to any of RTE’s podcasts? Did you even know that RTE offer over 70 different podcasts direct from their website? There was I thinking I was ok with doing 2 (Sound System / Playlist Mix)…

Or will we see the TV license system in Ireland revamped to a ‘Media License’ and see podcasting bundled in? New taxes on iPods and Zunes? Who knows…


  1. Stewart Curry January 21, 2008 at 10:56 am

    Absolutely not – I’ve already paid for it (through my TV licence) – why should I pay for it twice?

  2. Ina January 21, 2008 at 11:03 am

    I read about this yesterday too Ken.
    The only time that you should pay for pod/videocasts is if its of educational benefit.
    I dont know how much attention people will have to subscribe to yet another pod/videocast.


  3. John January 21, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    It’s bad enough having to pay a tv license for their rubbish. No thank you.

  4. James Corbett January 21, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    “Apples’s online store iTunes, the creators of podcasting.” So that’s why I don’t read the indo anymore. Totally uninformed hogwash!

    And I won’t pay another bob to RTE until such time as they start transmitting on Free-to-air satellite http://rte2fta.com/

  5. will January 21, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    Actually I would pay (flat fee for X months)… if it gave me exactly what I want, and a searchable archive
    e.g. News headlines and not the entire 2 hours of morning Ireland. Traffic reports are a but useless at min of 2 hours after the report.
    Individually edited interviews of guests from their shows (maybe grouped together)
    Individual segments from their news shows

    and the option to get a personalised (and editable) feed of what I like…

    In short, I’ll pay (and I do pay for some things off the net), but only for something of value.

  6. Pingback: Poetbloggs’ Blog » Playing catch-up

  7. Eoghan McCabe January 28, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    I’m with Curry. Absolutely not. But I’d listen to a few ads on it perhaps. Do the podcasts already have ads?

  8. will January 28, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    Currently the podcasts are advert free (for legal reasons apparently) At least supposed to be ad free.

    There were a few left in the Morning Ireland ones in 2006… complete unedited as broadcast 2+ hours of podcast. Someone copped on after a week

  9. tazus July 17, 2008 at 9:59 am

    TV Licences
    People!! are you living in the 21st century!!?? What’s wrong with you?
    you all know very well that the tv license, now days, is another lame excuse, for the government to raise funds from the poor us…yes it made sense in the 1930, 40, 50’s until the 1990… when in this country were just a few people and for a national tv station to run, the people needed to help out( and it made sense ), but now, we are at in the 21st century, battle of the fittest!! hello!! what ever happened with the right to free, uncensored information, the right to access this information freely and at whatever time you want??? we have the right to choose, a freedom of choice, there is not only the national tv station, we have other choices, if the national tv can not manage themselves than good luck and nice knowing you. But don’t ask the people to chip in, when we have so much choice.
    tv licensee? a licensee for a TV?? you realize the times we are living now are much different then the time that this law was issued!? is like that law in England where in some particular time of the day, on a particular street in London you could kill a Scott and get away with it. Yeah …That old!!
    You do realize that the national tv stations are making their monies from other sides and not the tv license …i.e. commercials…yeah a good example!! if I pay for a a national tv station to survive I expect that I am not going to be cluttered with people that are trying to sell me things that I don’t need.

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