The application window is now officially open globally for the first round of the Google Podcasts creator program, which will kick off in Jan. 2019.
With the launch of the Google Podcasts app in June, the digital giant is now looking ahead to the longterm viability of the medium.
In a blog post this week, Zack Reneau-Wedeen, Product Manager, Google Podcasts, said its future depends on a diverse array of stories, voices and creators.
“While there are more podcasts than ever before, there continues to be an imbalance in who is creating them. Women and people of colour are still underrepresented as hosts, and many of the world’s most popular podcasts hail from western, urban areas,” wrote Reneau-Wedeen. “In June we announced the Google Podcasts creator program, which aims to support these underrepresented voices in podcasting, and make it easier for people to learn how to get into this growing medium.”
Google has partnered with PRX, a public radio distribution marketplace behind shows like This American Life, Reveal and The Moth Radio Hour, which will lead and manage the program.
The Google Podcasts creator program is focused on three main pillars: empowering and training underrepresented voices through an accelerator program, educating a global community with free tools, and showcasing participants’ work as a model for others.
PRX, alongside a global advisory committee, will select teams to receive mentorship, seed funding, and intensive 20-week training. Applications will be accepted from around the globe.
PRX will also develop a series of “podcasting 101” videos in multiple languages for podcast enthusiasts who want to learn more about podcast creation, but aren’t yet ready to apply to the program.
Who is Google Podcasts looking for?
The program is looking for creative, engaged producers who:
- Represent a range of geographies, backgrounds, views, voices and styles
- Either self-identify as marginalized in the podcasting landscape – due to race, ethnicity, gender, religion, economic background, sexual orientation, age, physical abilities or some other reason – or intend to reach an audience that self-identifies as marginalized in the podcasting landscape
- Have a fresh and compelling podcast idea
- Are interested in making their podcasts sustainable in terms of growing revenue and audience
The program criteria also outlines who Google isn’t looking for including podcasts that take the shape of unstructured conversations or live storytelling; branded content; and short-run, terminal podcasts (e.g. six-episode terminal podcasts).
The winning teams will have a clear sense of a currently marginalized audience they want to reach with their podcast; demonstrate creativity and originality; and are able to dedicate the time necessary to complete the 20-week training.
Applications for the first round of training, taking place between Jan. and June 2019, are being accepted through Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. ET. The next application period is expected to begin in May 2019, with training to take place from late July to Dec. 2019.
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