Who would deny that a whisper excites the senses. People are accustomed to music listening via headsets. The speaking voice at intimate proximity surpasses even musical affect. In any case, the voice is immediate, close, of the moment, embodied, and active. Sounds envelop, as if clouds, with the voice, or certain voices, breaking like a thunder clap.
It’s well known that the voice draws attention. These effects are strongest when the voice presents via a phone or headphones. Some people think that mobile listening devices block out the essential sounds of the environment. They take you out of the place. I think they also add layers to everyday listening experience.
I’ve just compiled and scheduled some fascinating responses by students in our Media and Culture class about sound — silence, noise, annoyance, etiquette, privacy, etc. They recorded their conversations as audio files (voice memos) on smartphones.
Podcasting is normally a public medium, but we wanted to keep these private. After all, there’s also something revealing, personal and private about the voice. I include some instructions below on how to create a podcast for a limited audience.
But I also include a link here to the work of Jennifer Walker who completed the MSc in Design and Digital Media last year. She kindly consented to have her final dissertation on line. Her podcast about individuals with parents or carers with health issues is already public and makes compelling listening:
“Every week we interview different individuals, discussing experiences of growing up with a parent, guardian, carer or family affected by different mental health conditions, physical illnesses and other relationship issues.”
- Walker, Jennifer. 2018. Is There a Need for Candid Talk? Using Podcasting & Social Media to Raise Discussion around Mental Health & Families. Edinburgh: The University of Edinburgh (MSc Dissertation) (PDF)
How to narrow a podcast
- Upload audio file to a server that will provide a URL to the file source e.g. as media content in a WordPress blog server. WordPress.com is free, but you may have to pay for a plan upgrade to be able to upload audio.
- Create a blog site (e.g. on WordPress). Create a blog post and paste the URL of your audio. You can add images and other information.
- Select the “Podcast” category for the post. This is an option amongst the standard WordPress categories. You can also set the release date of that particular post.
- Add other audio files in the same way: one recording per blog post.
- Note the URL of the blog (not that particular post, but the whole blog site). The URL will be a podcast feed and end in “category/podcast/feed” e.g. _https://myownblog.wordpress.com/category/podcast/feed/
- Tell users to link to that URL in their podcast app on their smartphone.
- To go public you either publicise the URL of the feed, or submit that link to the Apple podcast service (or others) so it appears on podcast searches and is effectively public.
- Also see posts tagged “sound”: https://richardcoyne.com/tag/sound/