One of the unexpected joys of the iPod has been the number of entertaining podcasts I'm discovering. I've always liked the Guardian's Football Fiver email. One of the untamed wits behind it is a character called Barry Glendenning. Hearing his gentle Irish brogue on the Football Weekly podcast has been a treat. In the last week or so he and James Richardson were joined by Observer's serious sports columnist Paul Hayward. Hearing Barry describing Man City's courtship of Kaka as "like us inviting Girl's Aloud round for a bath together" was funny enough, but the tangible "eh?" from Hayward was one to behold. I would like to see Hayward get into the groove, but he wasn't poached from The Daily Mail, or the Telegraph, I forget which, to make asides about Rafa Benitez looking like a character from The Simpsons. Which is a shame. I can only see one winner emerge here.
I think podcasts have their own character, often giving an extra added dimension to the media from which it is sourced. A lot of newspapers and magazines do a shabby job. Of my two favourite outlets, there are mixed results.
Monocle's is spot on - Tyler Brule is as archly camp to the ear as he is in the written word, but some of his writers don't translate as well as he does.
I have no doubt that The Word magazine's office is chaotic, but the glossy magazine masks these shortcomings and, in fact, makes a virtue of them by channeling all of that energy into the structure of a monthly mag. Their podcast does not. In fact, it's quite hard to listen to as it just seems to be a bunch of fellahs sat around having a laugh. To be fair, this is an evolving media, it may improve with time, and the participants need to recognise what they are good at, and what they are not.