Music, Mics and Time Spent Listening: This Week in Podcasting

There are so many articles and blogs (and podcasts!) about podcasting coming out every week, it’s hard to keep up. Today I’m going to share three posts with you from this week that provide some practical insight for podcast makers.


Many people I speak to don’t understand what music they are allowed to play in their podcasts. Music licensing can be confusing and complex, and it’s easy to get lost in the acronyms and fine print. On top of that, the rules can be different depending on what country you’re in, or if you work for a larger organization that has some music license agreements already in place.

The following post does a great job of summing up the major challenges around music and podcasting. Steven Goldstein of Amplifi Media interviews lawyer David Oxenford and gets some really helpful explanations and context. 


  • streaming audio requires far fewer music licensing rights than podcasts (downloadable audio)
  • the “20-second rule” that some have invoked to use any music they want is a dangerous myth
  • there’s no one-stop shop for acquiring music rights for your podcast

Definitely worth a read! Check out Steven’s interview here:

Why Can’t Music Be Played in Podcasts?


Some research by the radio marketing/research company Nuvoodoo looks into who’s listening to podcasts, how podcast listening affects time spent listening to other things, as well as what people are doing while they’re listening.

It’s a brief blog entry, but it does shed light on some commonly asked questions.


  • broadcast radio is taking the biggest hit right now due to podcast listening
  • relaxing and commuting are two of the things people spend the most time doing while listening to podcasts
  • podcast audiences skew male, with the most listening (an hour/day or more) happening by men 25-44

Check out a synopsis of some of NuVudoo’s research here:

The Battle of the Sexes Among Radio’s Exes, Part III


            Shure Mv51 microphone (Photo: Shure)

          Shure Mv51 microphone (Photo: Shure)

This one is really more for folks who haven’t landed on gear they like, or want to experiment with using their iPhone as a portable audio recorder. USA Today’s Jefferson Graham tests three different mics that can plug into a computer or iPhone (and sometimes Android).


The reason I like this post is because he posts an audio demo (novel idea!) where you can hear him speaking through the different mics, so you can decide yourself what you like best.


  • all the mics are between $100-$200 (reasonable!)
  • IK Multimedia’s iRig Mic HD sounds pretty good!
  • they can all connect via USB or lightning port

Have a listen to Jefferson Graham’s demo here, or click on the link below the player to go to the USA Today blog entry:



Microphone showdown for podcasters - Blue, Shure & IK Multimedia


That’s it for this week. If you have any comments, please let me know. I’d love to know if this is helpful to you, or if you’d like to see other kinds of podcast info roundups in the future!