This is a follow-up post to my piece about transitioning the No Agenda Stream to an All Talk / Podcast format.
On Saturday, rotation of music was replaced with an all talk programming lineup. The response has been very encouraging, with a lot of positive comments and great new ideas coming in every day.
A big part of this switch is techinical. Pre-Flip, we were using a rather ingenious combination of shared dropboxes and human resources (I'm looking at you enlightenMEnt :-) to manage a 24/7 mix of music as selected and 'dropped' by the audience.
Post-Flip, the audience is still providing the programming, only now it's a mix of very short, approximately 5 minutes, to longer form, up to an hour, of mainly spoken word. I've been amazed at the variety of topics and voices that are now being broadcast globally on the stream. Really great entertaining stuff to listen to.
Under the hood, we are using a feature of Dave Winer's Blork system that was 'hidden in plain site'. Each contributor to the No Agenda News Network, only has to click the 'enclosure' button, select an mp3 file they have recorded, add a title and description, and the file is uploaded to a large safe storage bucket, and automatically downloaded from the feed into the stream's automation system. The automation software looks in a single folder (screenshot) for new content and knows when and how to schedule it for playback.
This is of course only part of the equation. Hard work is now being done on setting up an 'Asterisk PBX' system, for live call-ins when big news is happening anywhere in Gitmo Nation, the N Agenda Community will be on the scene live. It also looks like people will be able to 'phone in' reports, that are recorded and again dropped into the automation system.
Teh next step will be to provide a page for each show on the stream, with information the producer can maintain, a handy and memorbale url as well as podcast subscription and playout features.