Monthly Archives: April 2008

Are You Paying Attention, Squeak? :P Mario Kart Wii for $100 for game and wheel!

Are you playing attention, Squeak? Just in case you aren’t:

Do you get the message yet, mate?

I was shopping today at Westiefield and saw that in EB Games, the game of Mario Kart Wii and the steering wheel are in a pack for $99 which I thought was good value.

In case Squeak hasn’t got the message, here is a trailer from Nintendo Europe:

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Massive 31 computer giveaway!

There is a massive 31 computer giveaway coming up that you can be a part of. HP are giving 31 computers away via 31 different websites including Geek News Central. The price is what could be described as a dream machine worth $4500 US.  In addition to the computer,  the computers will be shipped around the world and have any customs and import duties paid so unlike a lot of other competitions, giveaways and offers, we here in Australia can take part as well.

Some sites like Geek News Central are giving away extra prizes as well in conjunction with this giveaway. This is a massive giveaway – not including any additional promotions by the  various websites!

Computer specifications

List of participating websites/programs

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Some Podcasting Reflections…..

Over the last week or so, there has been a fair bit of talk in the podcasting community about the podcasting community. The part that affects me the most (potentially) is the news that my host Podshow is now called Mevio. “What the hell is Mevio?” I hear you think. Actually, I’m thinking the exact same question.

I think I heard about it first via a podcasters email group. Then when I went to upload an episode of Erk Pod Mini, I saw that Podshow became Mevio. It would have been nice to receive an email saying “Dear Podcaster. We are now called Mevio. You don’t have to do anything because Podshow addresses will directly divert at our end to a Mevio address. Your show will not change as a result of the change in focus (if indeed that is what it is) of the company.”

And so far, I haven’t had to do anything. Podshow’s name diverts to Mevio. People can understand what Podshow is but what is Mevio? Then again having said that, some people probably asked “what the hell does this new company called Google do” some years ago.

According to the “About” page of Mevio, it says: “As the premier social media community, mevio is the only network providing single-click access to the best in new media in audio, video, podcasts, and music to be delivered to your computer, iPod, mobile device, or television.”

I think that the title of “premier social media community” is optimistic at best. I think that any podcaster who is in it for fun (like me) or uses it to earn a larger amount of income (people like Soccergirl, Dawn & Drew, they are the ones that come immediately to mind that I have listened to) should be concerned. Is it worth staying at Podshow Mevio? Will there still be support for people like me who uses Podshow as a free host? I’m not saying that I have a massively popular show but I know that I have a growing audience which is good. Am I better going to a new host or do I ride the Podshow/Mevio wave and hope that the water becomes smoother?

I don’t think that people outside “the space” realise how great this podcasting caper can be, how serious some people take it and yes, how much coin can be earned. Yes, there are people who take this seriously. Me included. The show might not sound serious at times but the behind the scenes stuff is serious indeed. There is a lot of work and thought that goes into Erk Pod, believe it or not. Just last weekend, there was a Podcamp in New York and there are others around the US. And if there was one in Australia, I’d go to it for sure. I’m not saying that I’d do this as a career (basically due to my pre-established career elsewhere) but just because of that, that doesn’t mean that it is something where I just rock up and do, no bells and whistles. I tried no bells and whistles when I started podcasting last year but that simply does not work. You need to be of a certain standard and I believe that while I have come a long way with Erk Pod, I am still learning things even after 100 episodes. I’m open to help people, I’m open to networking, I’m open to new ideas.

Why am I writing this post? To be honest, I don’t know. A couple of things were said on and off mic during Erk Pod Round Table which were interesting in relation to the subject matter I am writing about. In addition to this, there were a couple of things raised in the latest episode of Geek News Central episode 369 that got me thinking as well.

One of them was about the change of focus of Podshow/Mevio as I wrote above. I’m not looking for the coin for me but even having said that, some figures that shocked host Todd also shocked me. With his company Raw Voice, the coin from advertising is 70:30 in favour of the podcaster. At another company (that I am presuming is Podshow), the ratio is said to be 13:77 ie almost totally in the favour of the company. Obviously for me the ratio is 0:100 but the figure is still a concern.

Another thing that Todd mentioned was Twitter. For those of you who don’t know, Twitter is a social networking tool that people have described as a microblogging site as well as a status updating site. Todd said that some people had their Twitter names on their nametags instead of their name which was interesting. He also said that he didn’t think of doing that. He also wondered about if it is time to put things like Twitter names on business cards. To use Todd and I as examples, you can follow us at http://www.twitter.com/geeknews (Todd) or http://www.twitter.com/erkpod (Me) and our Twitter ID’s are @geeknews and @erkpod respectively. So you’ve have your @inserttwitternamehere on your business card or at least in the example Todd gave, your name badge. While it might be relevant at something like a Podcamp, I don’t think we are ready for Twitter: @erkpod on a business card just yet. Having said that, I do have my Skype ID on my Erk Pod promo cards. If you have a website, Twitter, Skype etc, it would be good if you can grab the same ID for everything. There would be nothing worse in my opinion of being Erk Pod on here, @erkpod69 on Twitter, erk_pod on Skype, for instance.

There was another article linked in the feedback section of the website from the Fairfax network here dealing with podcast personalities. Titled “Cult of the Podcast Personality”, it spoke of the recent trip to Australia of podcaster Leo Laporte. It’s figures like those quoted for Leo whose main show is “This Week in Tech” (aka TWiT) which are amazing. The article quotes that he does 10 podcasts a week (various shows including TWiT, net @ night and more) and worldwide he gets around 4.5 million downloads a month. Now that’s some outstanding figures! In Australia, he has around 10, 000 subscribers alone. He asks his listeners to donate $2 (US) per month and 1% of his audience do so. But when you have around half a million listeners world wide, $2 (or thereabouts, according to local currency) per month is still a good return that pays for things like bandwidth, hosting and rent (according to the article). Leo shares his revenue with his co-hosts and also has sponsors such as Audible & Dell. His Tasmanian trip was followed by fans around the world while he was visiting and photographing it and was sponsored by Adobe and the Tasmanian Government. Small meetups with Leo were held in Sydney (while in transit) and in Hobart.

So the big numbers can happen. It would be nice to have those sort of figures for Erk Pod but not realistic at this stage. I am happy with my figures and the fact that I have a small but engaged audience, most of who I know. The good thing about a lot of people in the podcasting space is that you can easily contact, connect and interact with the personalities. Try doing that with your average TV or radio star………

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Did Erk’s email to Merrick and Rosso work?

On Sunday, I wrote an email to Merrick and Rosso complaining at some length about their podcast that they release through their radio station Nova 969 here in Sydney. I mostly used the podcast of Tuesday 22 April as the example of the worst I have heard from the boys.

My complaints were:

  • Continual “Kate Ritchie has moved in with Merrick and Rosso” ads. We know! She joined the show in January. It is now April. We are listening to the podcast. We can hear her.
  • Playing “and on tomorrow’s podcast” at the beginning of today’s show.
  • Playing a segment as a promo and then repeating the segment.
  • In one case, playing the same segment twice.
  • Having an interview, saying goodbye to the guests and then doing a promo and then talking to the guest again. If you have said goodbye to the guest, that’s it!

I’m pleased to report that on yesterday’s podcast (Monday), there were no “Kate Ritchie has joined Merrick and Rosso” promos, there was no “coming up on tomorrow’s show at the start of today’s” and no repeated segment. It is almost as if the peanut who was producing the podcast last week got fired (or moved sideways) after my email and whoever was doing the podcast last year is back. There is a huge difference between last week and yesterday and if it continues, I’ll be happy to report that on Erk Pod. I’ll be happy with not feeling the need to throw my iPod at someone’s big fat head and I still get to listen to Merrick and Rosso.

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Erk Pod Mini 111 – Show Notes. Monday 28 April 2008

Welcome to Erk Pod Mini for Monday 28 April 2008. In this episode:

  • Very cold, snow at Katoomba
  • Blogging Big Brother and Erk and Drue did an episode of Erk to the Diary Room. More info on http://www.erktothediaryroom.com
  • Did I mention it was cold? :P

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Snow Near Erk Pod HQ!

There have been reports of snow across western NSW, mainly around the Lithgow and Bathurst areas on the western side of the Blue Mountains. Also, there were reports (confirmed by Drue) that is was snowing at Katoomba which is about 2 hours car/train ride west of Sydney. At 2pm local time, it was 2°C (35.6°F) at Katoomba.

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Erk Pod Mini 110 – Show Notes. Sunday 27 April 2008.

Welcome to Erk Pod Mini for Sunday 27 April 2008. In this episode:

  • Erk Pod Mini is back after a few days off around Erk Pod Maxi and Erk Pod Round Table 4.
  • Erk Pod Maxi episode 100 and Round Table 4 summary and thank yous.
  • A little bit of work
  • Dinner with Leigh and Amanda (Mr & Mrs Voice Over Guy)
  • Erk has set up a Facebook Group for the Wasting Time podcast. Richard thinks it is very cool! :)

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