TOP 5 REASONS FOR UNSUBSCRIBING FROM A DOCTOR WHO PODCAST   36 comments

A simple search on iTunes or keeping an eye on the Doctor Who Podcast Alliance will show what a multitude of DW related podcasts exists out there. I’ll subscribe to most of the new ones I come across to give them a chance but there are nowhere near enough hours in the day to follow them all so regrettably there has to be a ruthless culling process. Here (in no particular order) are my top 5 reasons for regretfully or vindictively clicking on “unsubscribe” when it comes to DW podcasts.

1. Instant Cure for Insomnia Voices: I’ve no real objection to someone rabbiting on about a boring topic. The very fact that I’m listening to a podcast shows that I’ve nothing more interesting to do. It’s the boring voices that get me down. As a Northerner, I’m a little ashamed to admit it but most of the depressing voices on podcasts are Northern (English) ones. Plenty of lively Northern voices to be found on podcasts but the flat-vowelled monotone drone which can be found in the North can be infuriating. It’s bad enough when you’re reduced to screaming “get to the point” at your speakers. It’s even worse to find yourself howling “get to end of the bloody sentence”. Almost by definition, if you’re participating in a DW podcast, you’re talking about something which excites and entertains you. So stop doing it in a tone more suited to dictating a suicide note. (note added Feb 2014 – now that I’m doing a podcast myself, the embarrassing irony of this point hits me every other week)

2. Podcasts About Yourself and Your Mates: The personal point of view is often the core of what makes a DW podcast individualistic but a DW podcast shouldn’t be a view of your personal life. This is a particular danger in podcasts with a number of regular contributors having a conversation with each other. It’s surprising how often you can get two podcasts where the contributors are chatting to each other about exactly the same subject and almost in the same manner, yet one of them makes you feel as if you’re included in the conversation and the other makes you feel as though you’re outside a window looking in on someone else’s conversation. It’s usually hard to put your finger on what differentiates the two but you can guarantee that a podcast which starts with a line like “Oh my god, I am so wasted today, mate” or where the podcasters laugh just that little bit too long and heartily at each other’s least witticism or which drifts off into anecdotes about friends of a friend will be fa more me me than Dodo. (Doctor Whom acknowledges the copyright of Julie Andrews)

3. The Wrong Mindset: Almost the worst offence of all. I’ve no objection to a podcast loving a DW episode or actor which I hated. Or vice versa. But when a podcast consistently loves the aspects of DW which I hate and/or consistently hates the ones I love, I’m eventually forced to ask myself: who do these people think they are? The arrogance of some podcasters in presuming to hold opinions different to mine can be breath-taking.

4. Eating: Nothing worse than stuffing your face with food while recording a podcast, unless it’s frantically chewing on gum which fortunately seems to be restricted to the occasional US podcast. What makes people imagine that anyone wants to listen to the sound of someone else eating, magnified through a microphone? I’ve lost count of the Big Finish news I’ve missed because they’ve all brought food with them and spend the conversation to a background of slushing so intrusive that it makes Murray Gold seem underplayed. I wasn’t going to name names but they’re all big boys on Big Finish and professionals. The worst thing is that their podcast is such fun (even if you’re not a customer) and so free of all the other 5 taboos that I can’t bring myself to unsubscribe from it. So I have to tune in to each new podcast with my fingers crossed and cowering behind the sofa. Will they have dined already or will they be snacking? Naughty Nick Briggs. Good job he behaves himself on the DW set. Imagine what sort of Emperor Dalek we’d have got – “What are you, Doctor? Coward or…ooh Smoky Bacon flavour.” And their habit of going “mmm-mmm-mmm” while eating makes them sound like a group of old ladies clustered round the library radiator, sucking on Mintoes.

5. The Comic Store Guy from the Simpsons: The most irritating of all. The use of a dodgy approximation of this voice to ridicule the sadness of the more anal type of fan. Podcasters criticising people for being too obsessive? Hello, Mr Kettle. It’s a bit like the sledgehammer racism analogy from Classic Star Trek. “He is black on the wrong side of his face.” Only in this case it’s “they are not anal about the same things which we are anal about”.  Face up to it, guys, you can either record an hour long podcast about Doctor Who every week or you can pose as someone who has sci-fi in the proper proportion in their life. You really can’t do both. It gets worse by an order of magnitude (I’ve no idea what that means but it always sounds impressive when other people say it) when one podcast gets invited onto another podcast as guests. When you’ve had 20 straight minutes of one team of podcasters going on and on and on and ON to another team of podcasters about how awful it is that some Doctor Who fans lack a sense of proportion in life, you begin to wonder if you’re failing to pick up on some ultra-subtle intentional irony. Thank god that the gene for lack of self awareness seems to be dormant in bloggers.

I realise that this is probably very unfair of me and that I may well have caught a podcast on a bad day. I do try to give second and third chances but I gave those to David Tennant at the end of S2 and S3 and it still ended in tears.

I recently heard one podcast giving a guide to newbie DW podcasters advise that there are so many already out there that it’s important to identify an unfilled niche (matron). Like covering DW merchandise or DW fan art. I think that this was barking up the wrong tree. As far as I’m concerned, you could do what most of the other podcasts are already doing (news, episode reviews, etc) and I’d tune in provided that it’s lively and engaging and not too serious. It’s the tone of the podcasters that matters far more than the subject of the podcast.

Some podcasts are so uniquely ideosyncratic that they draw me in despite breaching many of the 5 rules above. When the first line you ever hear on one podcast turns out to be “Oh my god, I shit you not, the convention was fucking awesome”, then you really can’t avoid sticking with The Happiness Patrol (motto: never knowingly labelled CLEAN on iTunes). The in-depthness of Radio Free Skaro coupled with the rarity of a viewpoint which is neither UK nor US based absolves them of breaching Rule 5 every five minutes. The enthusiasm and spectacular mispronunciations of Bigger on the Inside and the borderline homoeroticism of Radio Rassilon more than outweigh whatever faults they may have (and they don’t have any). I’m a regular fan of quite a few others too but, if I started naming them all, it might make it too obvious which ones I’ve deleted over the years.

I suppose it must be the same with DW blogs. So many out there that I didn’t start this one (or resurrect one after years of hard work got wiped out by an unhelpful host) with the intention of filling any particular niche in DW fandom. It was purely to give me scope to say whatever I liked about the show, free from the shackles of your average DW chat forums which, ironically for fans of the ultimate in British TV, tend to be irony free zones and about as liberal as Nyder on the day that he realised he’d put his red thong in the wash with all Davros’ whites.

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Posted April 6, 2011 by docwhom in Misc

36 responses to “TOP 5 REASONS FOR UNSUBSCRIBING FROM A DOCTOR WHO PODCAST

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  1. Pingback: Matt and Karen answer to Facebook, is ‘Who’ for geeks?, plus more news, WhoTubes, reviews and spoilers | Entertainment Blogs

  2. You’lll be going for the Dr. Who bloggers next.

  3. Matthew, my draft article on your blog is still being edited for language by my lawyers who are such nitpickers. How could anyone judge “insane megalomaniac” to be libellous?

    😉

  4. I listen to The Whocast again now that Tony G & Dave Keep are the regular hosts,The Flashing Blade,The Naked Scarf,Hoo On Who,Tardis Tavern & The Krynoid Podcast. I dont have the time or inclination to discover any more.

    • Radio Free Skaro was responsible for two fantastic interviews from Gallifrey One last year with Nick Briggs and Graeme Harper.

  5. The Blue Box Podcast has started up . Attached to STARBURST online. The first episode is good but not such a great mix on the voices. Sound problems seem to have been sorted by the second one and they have promised it will start sounding great from number 4. I like this a lot. 3 guys chatting about who with a theme a week it seems. Amusing, not insular and up their own bums yet knowledgable and open, this podcast cast feels like it will get better and better. Bigger on the inside is anoth that is excellent. Two amerian guys take on our beloved Timelord running through every episode from start to finish. One has seen them one hasn’t seen any classics , so the reactions are hilarious and refreshing. They pull no punches and are always kind to the emailing fraternity. Give it a go. Ood cast is fun and light, they sound quite young and enthusiastic which most podcasts fail badly with. Worth a listen.

  6. Bigger on the Inside is one of my favourites. Though the spectacular mispronunciations have tailed off since Masque of Mandragora. Here’s hoping that, as they start to tackle New Who, Raxacoricofalapatorius gets a good mangling. Tried the new Blue Box one a week ago. Very promising and interesting right from the start though had a few problems subscribing on iTunes.

  7. J.R. from the Blue Box Podcast here; just wanted to say thank you for the kind words! (Never having done anything like this before – I was asked to host it rather than volunteering – I didn’t know whether I had it in me…) You’ll also be pleased to know that from episode four (recorded last night) we have a fourth member of the team who’ll also be engineering for us, so not only are those early sound problems indeed cleared up, but we’re also sounding a lot clearer and more professional too (relatively speaking, of course). I think we are improving as presenters too, having now overcome the hurdle of our (and particularly my) early nerves, so hopefully the improvements will be noticeable all around, beginning with that fourth episode.

    I just have my fingers crossed now you don’t unsubscribe!

  8. Just heard the “Event TV” one. Still liking the “Talking about DW so you don’t have to” which is quite catchy and funny. Podcast still succeeding well as people chatting to each other rather than at each other. Any podcast which contains people who like the idea of multi-Doctor stories and admire Ghostlight yet makes me want to listen rather than throw the speakers out of the window must be on to something. I think what works well is that the contributors are very very well versed in DW but wear it very lightly rather than shoving down the listener’s throat (or ear canal) and aren’t competing with each other to trump the next guy’s knowledge of DW. Keep up the good work.

  9. [blushes] You are VERY kind. Hope we don’t disappoint tomorrow night when our new and improved episode four débuts. [/blushes]

  10. The Blue Box podcast gets better each week. Really hit the perfect conversational tone – not too addressing the listener to be artificial and not too cliquey to exclude the listener. I’m convinced that J.R. must have been born around 1966 like me as this week he came out with a succession of punch-the-air moments (for me). I’ve spent my whole life assuming that no-one else in the world thought that Peter Davison’s panting acting was distracting, that the TARDIS crew of Tegan, Nyssa, Adric and the 5th Doctor was so full of sulky friction that it spoiled the mood of the show and (guilty secret) that Caves of Androzani is not the brilliant chart-topper it’s made out to be. At last, a podcast featuring someone who wasn’t of an impressionable age during the 5th Doctor’s reign and so doesn’t adore every second of it. Of course J.R. has it completely arse about face when talking about the Doctor never being vulnerable. Children don’t want to the Doctor to protect the universe from the Daleks. They want to protect the Doctor from the Daleks and the universe can go hang.

    • Wow, you continue to be really very kind to us! I hope we continue to deliver the goods with our podcast – we’re still learning as we go along. (And I was born in 1968…)

  11. Ugh!!! Youngster!!! Still. Roughly the same era. Plus your voice sounds like a slighty more sophisticated version of Nick Briggs’.

  12. Pingback: Blue Box Podcast « DOCTOR WHOM

  13. As the owner of a podcast an a norther voice….. ill get my coat… lol (tin dog podcast)

  14. Actually The Happiness Patrol has been circling the bowl for the last year and a half.

  15. and long may it continue to circle!

  16. Like bigger in inside and am typically going through it in random order, being a wannabe time traveller.

    • I’ve followed Bigger on the Inside in order from the start. Each new one is definitely a DDM. The only disappointment is that, as you progress, Mike’s mispronunciations grow slightly less spectacular with experience.

  17. Pingback: NOOOOOOOOO – THE MAELSTROM | DOCTOR WHOM

  18. Doc Whom, nice essay and right on the mark. During the last 6 months I’ve been sorting through the endless sea of DW Podcasts looking for good ones and wow, the pickings are slim. My favorites:

    – DWP (the Campervan guys). They do their homework, aren’t annoying and don’t spend more time giggling at their own jokes than they do commentating. I really enjoy this one. Ironically it was the first I listened to!
    – BLUE BOX (Starburst) Great ensemble of guys with engaging, smart personalities. On the short list of “must listen to” podcasts.
    – RADIO FREE SKARO: Sort of a love/hate relationship. It’s a smart cast and they are one of the few who actually edit their shows (it’s almost a given that any podcast which isn’t edited and simply has a bunch of blokes hitting record for two and a half hours and posting the results as-is will suck). But at least the show is overall better than most.
    – WHO BACK WHEN: Probably the best of the R-rated irreverent commentaries, but the host is hard to listen to for more than an hour. It’s funny, but I wish they didn’t seem so interested in making it blindingly obvious that they are smoking dope during the show. Do we reallly have to constantly listen to the sounds of lighters, coughing and sniffling? Turn off your damn mic when you take a hit! Oh but then you wouldn’t seem so edgy, which might be a little too important to these guys. But still an entertaining show.
    KASTERBOROUS: Needs a new name, but it’s a funny, well produced show worth a listen.
    42 to DOOMSDAY: Another good one with creative topics.

    There are sometimes bits worth listening to in the plethora of others, but often the hosts are too difficult to listen to, sometimes due to their personalities and sometimes for technical reasons (if after a dozen episodes you still sound like you’re recording in a toilet and constantly overmodulating just hang it up). I hate to say it, but in 99% of the cases girls and Whocasts don’t mix. They unfortunately fall into the stereotype of incessant giggling and talking about Tennant’s bum. Seriously they just laugh at EVERYTHING and it’s too much to take (sorry, VERITY, just the fact that you’re all chicks doesn’t save you). I also find a lot of casts consist of conversations between people who have exactly the same opinions, which doesn’t exactly make for interesting listening. Honestly a lot of these shows are like “loved last night’s show!” “Me too!” “Great!” for an hour plus. I’ve literally heard shows where before the “debate” begins the host goes around the room just to “make sure” everyone liked the episode.

    That leads me to another pet peeve about many of these shows – it almost seems like a crime to have a negative opinion about Doctor Who. I’m sorry, but the anniversary episode was NOT perfect, yet it was nearly impossible to find an opinion that even suggested the Zygon subplot was abandoned and not a great way to “resolve” things. A lot of shows amount to little more than an hour of fan-squee, and I’m not exaggerating. It’s like they think the point of a podcast is to get on a mic every week and reaffirm to the world that DW is indeed the greatest thing of all time. A good podcast NEEDS contrast and varying opinions – you want to make sure that at least a few people DIDN’T like last week’s show, otherwise congratulations, you’ve just wasted a ton of bandwidth releasing an hour of audio completely identical to 95% of the other DW shows.

    Ok, so ends the rant of a new podcast listener. I’ve sampled upwards of fifty different shows and my must-listen list boils down to about half a dozen. But at least that’s six shows a week of something… wonderful 🙂

    • Couple of things. Tmdwp is the minute doctor who podcast. One of the few solo doctor who podcasts. There are four main ones. Chip and his 2 min one. Tmdwp. Tim drurys ‘take on’ and indeed my own. The tin dog podcast. Now at show 370! O am however northern so I probably break some rules. Lol

  19. Bloody hell, Mojo. You don’t pull your punches. Blue Box, Kasterborous and RFS are three of my faves too. And I’m a DWP and 42toD regular listener too. Not come across Who Back When yet so will give it a try. There are lots of others I have a soft spot for among which some highlights are Bigger on the Inside, Radio Rassilon, The Memory Cheats and The Happiness Patrol (Deep South accents at the cocktail hour).

    If you really want a refuge from fan conformity, may I be so bold as to suggest the newborn “Diddly Dum Podcast” (see links and recent posts on this blog) in which I play a tiny and humble role (or rather in which I play a large role and my humility plays a tiny role)? The Blue Box Podcast guys took their three most regular email correspondents and browbeat them into starting a podcast of our own (mainly I think in the hope that we’d then be too busy to email them, the optimistic fools). Recent episodes have included shock admissions to not understanding what people see in Caves of Androzani and someone defending not only Victory of the Daleks but the new design of the Daleks too.

    So give us a try. You’d never have believed that the sound of rolling one eyes upwards in suffering despair could come across so well on audio.

  20. Hi Doc, thanks for the fast reply, it’s an old thread so I wasn’t sure if anyone would notice. I do recognize your name from Bluebox feedback! Ok let’s see if I can find a link to your show I’ll pull it up right now… Ok it’s running. Two hours?? That’s a long one (tee-hee). But it sounds like we have similar tastes so I’m willing to forgive the length… Do you edit? I’ve done a little audio work in the past and editing your content – whether it be video or audio – is always essential in producing a good show. Of course it’s time consuming, which is why most folks don’t do it, but we’ll see 😉

    I’ve listened to Memory Cheats a few times, but I want to strangle the host for literally SCREAMING whenever the episode title is announced. I could understand getting over excited if a particular favorite comes up, but really? Every time? “And today we’ll be discussing Logopolis” followed by “YAHOOOOOOO WOOOOWOOOOO HAAAHAAAWOOPWOOPWOOP!” It’s not that big a deal but it’s just annoying and the volume spikes and it’s artificial. But my biggest problem with the podcast is past episodes, they refuse to list the titles! Yes ok I understand the point of the podcast is you get a random episode chosen for you to review and for new shows I agree it should be a surprise but now that they have hundreds of shows maybe I’d LIKE to find their reviews of specific shows. Like right now I have an itch to hear their take on Castrovalva but it would be literally impossible to find it unless I listened to the opening of every show. So after 6 months or so they really should just include the title with back episodes.

    I’ve heard a few episodes of Bigger on the Inside but I can’t remember how I felt about it, so I guess I didn’t love it, but I do have a vague memory that it’s not bad. I’ll certainly try the others.

    Hey maybe you can answer a question, several times RFS has talked about a show called “twidip” or something and my guess is it’s a 4 or 6 letter abbreviation but in their infinite wisdom they’ve never given the web address and just assumed that somehow sounding out a word like “twidip” would be all the info I need. Wrong! Any idea what it’s all about?

    By the way check out my FB page, I don’t pull punches their either and often put up some DW content. I did an essay about DW fans inability to be negative so if you go to the page and scroll down A LOT you’ll find it. It’s got a cartoon picture at the top with a silly character saying “Love all the Whovians!” And I’ve been collecting pictures for an upcoming post of what I can only call the bizarre phenomenon of girls who dress like Daleks. I’ve got some great images so it should be a lot of fun! Keep a look out for it. Here’s my page:

    https://www.facebook.com/Adam.Mojo.Lebowitz?ref=tn_tnmn

    Ok do you want an honest review of the first half hour of your podcast? You guys seem like a jovial bunch of smart fellows but as expected it does need editing. Don’t worry, all podcasts should be edited. It truly is the dividing line between the wheat and chafe. Fewer awkward pauses would be nice and overall the pace really needs to pick up, which is generally what editing will do. So instead of 2 hours of slow, unsure chat, you’d end up with msybe 45 mins of much more confident, fast paced conversation. Just try doing one, or do the first half hour of an episode and see how it goes. I’m sure you’d wind up really excited at what a transformation editing can achieve!

    Oh and someone needs to oil their chair 😉

  21. Doc, finished listening to the show, it took a while since I fell asleep twice 😉 but that’s because I haven’t slept in 24 hours and admittedly as I said the lack of editing creates a slow pace that makes it… “relaxing.” 🙂

    BUT.. you’ve got the most important thing going for you – CONTENT. Your comments and views are truly interesting and insightful. I just listened to your take on the Ecceleston series and I’m not being hyperbolic when I say it was bloody brilliant. Your examination of plot being a backdrop for character moments was eye opening to say the least and were practically an education for writers. I also really liked your view of how Eccelston had bookends, like starting out with his torment over being responsible for everyone dying but ending with “today, everybody LIVES” even if it means his self sacrifice.

    I never reflected the start of the series with end and if you look at it that way his death and regeneration come as a victory – a small pennance he gladly pays to make up for earlier sins. If it weren’t for your podcast I never would have seen it that way.

    So you’ve got the foundation of a winning show, worthy of everyone’s top ten list, you just need some spit and polish to make it all come together. The sound quality needs improving, although it’s not too bad, if you’ve got good audio software some post equalization might be enough to fix it and it’s certainly easier than fixing Skype and everyone buying new microphones.

    And, of course, the Cyberman in the room, you MUST get in the habbit of editing your shows if you want it to succeed. I know, I know, who is this Mojo guy coming out of nowhere telling me how to run my podcast, but all I’m doing is mentioning the obvious. Editing is essential and I guarantee you that not only is every podcast on your top ten list is heavily edited, if it weren’t you’d have never listened to more than 2 or 3 shows. All the good ones are about an hour, sometimes 75 mins, but that should really be the target. 2 hours plus is just too much of an investment in time for most folks, especially when the show needs editing. Hell, even if after editing and trimming all the fat you had a great show but it was still 2 hours, I’d suggest cutting it into two episodes. On the other hand, if you’re going to do a monthly show, two hours is probably fine, but it still needs to be a fast paced, edited 2 hours.

    If you don’t have any editing experience and no one on your team has the desire to edit, I might volunteer since I think your content is so good I want to see you succeed. Plus it’s always good to have a 3rd party involved – chopping down your own material can be challenging to say the least. Right now I’m a little busy so it might be a month before I have time, but if you need to be convinced that your show should be edited I’d be happy to do a segment of it just for fun so you can see what I would do with it and you can hear the difference it makes.

    In any case, you guys are great. No giggling, squeeing or Simpsons impressions. You don’t talk about your personal lives and how your daughter had a piano recital for 15 minutes and aside from the sneezing I wasn’t annoyed even once! And you know what a compliment that is, annoying hosts with horrendous accents and laughs that make you cringe are the plague of almost every podcast. You reallly do have the basic tools in place for a classic, must-listen podcast and if you get around to the editing thing I’d bet good money that you’re going to have a lot of success.

  22. Oh and whomever has that creaking chair needs to ditch it while recording. It’s really obvious and noisy. And if your friend ever opens another wrapper and audibly eats or drinks again just shoot him. They should just figure out how to turn their mic off when they need to inhale or cough or sneeze or blow their nose.

  23. Ok listening to the most recent one now.. I’ve gone through all of them in one night and I should have known better than to judge based on your first episode. Anyway it’s getting better for sure. Clearly there is some editing happening, but personally I’d go for more, I’m talking show no mercy, any overly long pause, cough, sneeze, wheeze, joke that doesn’t work or entire bits that just go nowhere should be chopped out. I still think a weekly cast should be kept to 75 mins tops. It would be nice if you all had the same sound quality… Find out what JR’s Skype settings are and what brand of mic he’s using and everyone should just copy him since his voice quality is noticably superior. It still sounds like one of you is speaking over a walkie talkie and one of you is in a bathroom (by the way I may have missed it but do you introduce yourselves at the top of the show? Because I still haven’t worked out who is who). And while the “extra” noises seem to have gone (thanks for retiring the squeaking chair) one of you guys is a bit giggly. Just try and contain yourself a bit, it’s always a little odd when nothing overtly funny has been said but someone keeps laughing at the nearest sign of a joke. Come on, it’s not the Verity cast!

    Anyway getting better… Tighten up the show, maybe work out an actual format, cut out absolutely everything that isn’t as good as the next best bit and try and equalize voice quality. And Mr. Giggles, take a chill pill when the show starts! At the very least try and lower your volume when you randomly burst out laughing 🙂

    Oh yeah and your sound FX should all have one purpose… If the Cloister bell is your “bad word bleep,” that’s all it should be, use something else for the warning sound. Although I am personally not a fan of bad word bleeps, they sound unprofessional and for whatever reason never seem to fit DW podcasts. Just don’t swear! Or don’t bleep words that don’t HAVE to be bleeped. Like I doubt “crack” is actually a banned word…

    Well I’ve subscribed and hopefully you don’t think I’m an absolute dick for backseat driving your show! But I don’t have my own so I need to live vicariously through yours 😉

  24. Ok so thanks for turning me on to Radio Rassilon, I’ve just listened to a few episodes and it’s quite entertaining. But let me ask you – is his five year old ALWAYS in it? I understand how proud parents think their children are the shiniest star in the galaxy and obviously everyone else agrees… but essentially listening to baby noises in the background of a podcast is where I must draw the line. I know, I’m a heartless bastard. Anyway let me know if that’s what’s in store because if it is, I may have to unsubscribe. And “baby noises” might actually be a good rule to add to your list of basic reasons to unsubscribe to a DW podcast. And it will make me feel less guilty.

    By the way, I just posted a “Girls dressed like Daleks” gallery on my Facebook page, so take a look and feel free to comment. Ultimately I concluded that the reason we find these women so appealing should be fairly obvious – a hot chick in a short skirt who’s always ready to plunge our toilet and cook us breakfast? Need I say more??

  25. Bloody hell, Mojo! Or, as I understand Americans prefer to say: Geez Louise, Mac! (or have I got my dating protocols confused there?) – when you decide to critique something, you don’t do it by halves. Just to give you a bit of feedback, your posted comments here are way too long at 43 paragraphs. Personally, I find that a bit of judicious editing can easily get you down to the ideal length which should be just long enough to say “You’re wonderful, guys.” 😉

    Seriously, thanks for going to the trouble of giving us feedback. And thanks even more for posting it where only I am likely to find it. I take what you say about editing but there were extenuating circumstances. One problem is that we thought of themes for our first two podcasts which would be large enough for us not to have to struggle for things to say. Alas, we went way over the top and chose two themes which were so large that each took us two two-hour podcasts to cover. It’s highly unlikely that we’ll choose such mammoth subjects again and we’ll probably tighten up on how long we ramble on for. We were all pretty nervous beforehand and, while one might expect nerves to make you clam up, it can often make you talk too much.

    Also, you need to bear in mind that not only had none of us three Diddly-Dumbers done a podcast before, we’d never even met or spoken to each other before we were invited onto the recent “Round Rabbit” episode of the Blue Box Podcast. So, we’ve not just been learning on the job how to do a podcast , at the same time we’ve also been getting to know each other. That explains a lot of the stuff like creaking chairs and background noise. Even something as obvious as remembering to mute our mics when we’re not talking has been part of the learning curve.

    We’re not too sure about editing right now. With luck, we would hope to cut down the time naturally by the pauses getting fewer as we gain confidence and experience. We doubt that we’ll go on for much longer than 90 mins on average. And to be honest, we really have no interest in producing a zippy, fast-paced, 45 mins podcast. That has always seemed to me more suited to informational podcasts – here’s this week’s news in the world of Doctor Who, and here’s this week’s review of the latest DVD release, and here’s our slot from our contributor in Belgium, see you next week. As you yourself say, there are plenty of those podcasts around already if people want that sort of thing. I myself prefer the longer and more leisurely podcasts provided that they’re still interesting. Our style is far more likely to be that of a rambling conversation between friends than that of bang-bang-bang getting through the bullet-points. You’re right in that, to some extent, we have to tailor ourselves to an audience but I’d rather not bother doing the podcast if we have to produce a tightly processed and marketed package.

    A lot of the feedback we’ve been getting has been from people enjoying the laid back, mildly chaotic, conversational style of what we’ve done so far. I think we’d rather attract a niche audience of 100 for what we enjoy doing than a mass audience of several thousand for something that just isn’t our style. There are also external pressures – wives are now complaning that we take too much time doing this.

    In fact, I’m not sure that I agree with you about the more successful podcasts being heavily edited. JR for example hardly edits the Blue Box podcast at all other than for sound levels and synchronising. I’ve checked with him and he confirms that. Yes, if one of the Blue Boxers loses his Skype connection for ten mins, JR might edit that out but I think he only does it in extreme cases. Also, my own view is that his podcast comes across to the listener as very lightly edited (or not at all). In fact, it’s quite common to hear JR saying something like: “Hang on, we’ve lost Lee. Lee, are you there? Oh we’ll carry on until we get him back.” Now something like Radio Free Skaro might edit heavily, I don’t know the guys personally as I’m not informed enough to be able to chat about hockey. But I suspect that they don’t. I suspect that at the most they might record their “commentaries” separately and splice them onto the end of their introductory chat about the news. I genuinely think that, if they heavily edited, we’d be able to tell. The flow of the conversation wouldn’t be as smooth, even if it were edited in a professional studio. I may be wrong (it has been known).

    Oh and yes, for the first three podcasts at least, two of us had colds and one of those was a cold on top of an allergic reaction.

    Curiously, JR uses a cheap Skype headset like the rest of us. His theory is that, if voices on cheap mics sound loudest, it’s probably because, the cheaper the mic, the more it compresses the sound. All of that is, I confess, over my head technically. Don’t worry if you can’t tell us apart. I’ve been listening to the Blue Box podcast from the start and still can’t tell Lee, Mark and Simon’s voices apart. Mind you, they all live in the same city. The Diddly-Dumbers are from Wales, and from the North-West and the North-East of England. Rev is the guy with the fairly marked North-East accent (if you recognise one) or the one who sounds like he’s calling from his bathroom (if you don’t) and Al is the infuriatingly enthusiastic one who starts off with the “Hi, and welcome to…”. I’m the one with the vaguely Manchester accent who sounds as if he’s got hay fever. On the artwork, Doc is the one disguised as a Dalek under a cardboard box, Al is the one with the Adric star on his chest and Rev is the one with the hair.

    There is, however, no excuse for not being able to distinguish the Cloister Bell from Rassilon’s Horn.

    Incidentally, if we did cut out everything which isn’t as good as the next bit, then logically we would only have two choices – a podcast which goes downhill from the start or a podcast with only one “bit” in it.

    Thanks for your kind words about the content. Regarding the Eccleston series, I confess that that is my particular love and I’ve thought about it and why I love it for years.

    Actually, I quite like Steven’s cackle on The Memory Cheats (though I think it’s occasionally done now as a motif rather than a genuine reaction). And I miss it when he doesn’t do it. Each to his own.

    My own preference is for Daleks dressed as girls.

  26. So when is the next diddly-do podcast? You were on quite a roll there and then you just stopped!

  27. Diddly-Dum. And it’s put every alternate Friday. Last one was available from 2 days ago.

  28. Hmmm I didn’t see it updated on iTunes – should it be there? The last episode on iTunes is dated Feb 6!

  29. Ok that’s odd, in my podcast subscription folder the show won’t display episodes past Feb 6, but when I find the show in the store after searching for it all the episodes appear. I tried unsunscribing and resubscribing but to no avail, it doesn’t show recent episodes and it also doesn’t display the show’s logo. Very strange, I’ve not had that happen with other shows. The important thing is I can listen to it through the store, but I wish it would properly update in my own podcast folder! Is it at all possible that it’s something on your end? I haven’t updated to iOS 7 yet since frankly I don’t like it, but if that was the problem I’d think I’d have trouble with other shows. Anyway it’s probably something on my end (ahem) but you still might want to look into it. In any case I’m glad the show continues and I’m listening to the newest one right now! In fact I have some comments I’ll post in a seperate message…

  30. Pingback: DIDDLY DUM 026 – The Foot and Mouth Christmas Special | diddlydumpodcast

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