Apple iTunes Podcast Directory is a Piece of Crap!

Itunes

I am Sorry but Apple has lost it’s way big time! Today when I tried to find some podcast in the iTunes directory, it was nearly impossible to find the shows that I was looking for.

I am very serious when I say that the iTunes team really blew it big time with this latest iTunes release. I have been hearing nothing but complaint after complaint from podcasters and even more from listeners.

Those that I talk to that are in the featured and top picks list are seeing record growths in their show audiences. Its pretty easy to see why. No one else is getting exposure within iTunes it’s because it is very hard to find anything but featured shows.

At this point in the game Apple is hurting podcasting more than they are helping it! Most new and even seasoned podcasters are all screwed because some design team at Apple decided to make it very hard to find the full listing of podcast within the iTunes application itself.

Apple has become a walled fortress at this point. They have an undeniable strangle-hold on the community. It’s no wonder the number of people listening to podcast are increasingly using a computer to tune in, versus a media device. It’s because the #1 seller of MP3 players has sold us down the river!

Hate to say it. but the podcasting community let them do it. Today there are only a few podcast software catcher application alternatives to the iTunes application.

The first alternative is Juice but the primary directory it is connected to has been abandoned, thats another story for another day AC.  The Juice team appear to have no inclination to work with others to fix the issue and or work with people that have actively maintained directories.

The second is myPodder by the Podcast Ready folks, we all know Apple is trying to put the screws to them but at least they have a viable up to date directory within the application and site interface. The rest of the podcatcher applications are so far below the radar that they might as well not exist.

The podcasting community at large is totally responsible we blew it, we drank the Apple koolaid and now it’s like Jonestown all over again there are podcasts dying, because one of the primary ways people were finding shows has been essentially hidden in iTunes. Plus Apple continues to let Podcasters play games with the listings.

It pisses me off to no end, and yet most podcasters don’t care, for the most part many have not been with the community long enough to understand all of the dynamics of what has happened, and were things are headed.  I will get off my Soap box now but the problem lay in three directions

Podcasters Let it Happen, Podcasters did not React, Podcasters have not Spoken out!

The Community has largely let the Listeners Down!

Comments

  1. says

    Todd,

    I found your podcast without using the keyboard. How? By using categories. Here are the steps:

    1. Open the iTunes Store
    2. Click on Podcasts Section
    3. Click on the Browse button (Bottom right, looks like a CBS Eyeball) Tech News
    5. Sort by Name… Scroll down to Geek… There you are.

    I tell my listeners all the time to utilize the browse feature and category features of iTunes. Now granted, categories were borked in the past but now they seem to be fixed.

  2. says

    I have been using Juice for some time and haven’t really an any issues with it besides wishing it was easier to use. I burn “podcast’s” to a CD everyday for the night at work, using a personal headphone player is out of the question as much as I am on the phone.

    We have upgraded to iTunes 7 with thepurchase of a 5.5 gen 30GB iPod. I tried to talk my daughter out of the purchase, claiming that there has to be a better option for taking media with you. Being a teen, she fell for the sexiest of the device. It was her hard earned cash, so I could only provide advice. iTunes has a way of hiding things that would make their service better.

  3. says

    I think we are partly to blame, But apple takes most of the blame.

    We take the blame cause we saw a huge powerhouse like Apple *embracing* podcasting and made it so people could download our shows. Everyone talked about how great it was and of course since the iPod has the MP3 market it was inevitable that people would want to use it. We take blame cause us as podcasters knew this, and we somewhat made it, what it is now. Without being in the iTunes directory forget ever getting more that a couple hundred listeners it just wont happen. If your not in iTunes you almost don’t exist in the Directory.

    Now Apple in my opinion is mostly to blame. They have never and probably will never listen to anything the podcast community wants in regards to the Podcast area in iTunes. They keep changing it on a whim to whatever they decide. I spoke with the Apple Employees that were at the podcast expo and called them out on the ‘Featured” thing. He claims it’s based on Subscriptions. I called his bluff stating that many “Traditional media” outlets put their shows “magically” they become a front page featured podcast. There has to be some sort of agreement they have or money being exchanged. (Mind you this is not meant at other “indie” shows that just happened to be picked More power to those guys”)

    And I can attest as well to no more new subscribers. I was one the Technology Featured list (the one that has 5 pages to it) I was on the 5th page but I was ‘featured’ and my number steadily raised now I am not ad they have pretty much stayed the same.

    Sorry for the long comment but Thats my .2 Cents

  4. says

    Hey Todd, I thought it was just me that this was happening to. I too have been having a really hard time finding Podcasts on Itunes, including my own. Sometimes I cant even find my Podcast by the show name, but I can find it by typing my own name instead?!! This is intermittent and sometimes works the other way around too. But yeah, the iTunes podcast directory is all messed up.

  5. says

    Most of us cheered when iTunes started to list podcasts. All of our numbers jumped considerably. Unfortunately, Apple sees fit to isolate themselves from the community and supply no method of communications.

    Their draconian measures of listing/de-listing podcasters are causing harm to this community and the lip-service they provide is worthless.

    I was de-listed because of a bad feed. I corrected the problems, the feed validates, and sent numerous emails to Apple and have seen no response.

    I’m certain I’m not alone and the problems Todd reported above are just a continuation of the same iconclastic, ivory tower mentality others have been seeing for some time.

  6. says

    Podcasters shouldn’t rely solely on Apple to promote their show. I look at iTunes to be more of a podcatcher then a directory. Podcasters should have an iTunes link on their website where a listener only has to click an easily identifiable iTunes button to subscribe to a podcast. Podcasters should be using other sources to promote their show. Google, Technorati, blogs, or even other podcasts are excellent places to promote a podcast.

    Podcasters should also try to utilize their listeners to get the word out about their show. Word of mouth has always been the best advertising one can get. They should ask listeners to include links to their podcast on their personal blogs. Maybe make a promotion out of it. Reward listeners that include a link with a link of their own. Podcasters shouldn’t just be trying to gain listeners, but listeners that are actually interested in their content. Listeners like the ones they already have.

    Podcasters should utilize iTunes, but they shouldn’t look at it to be the end all of podcast promotion. I don’t think it was ever meant to be that.

  7. Tester says

    Boy you really have it bad against Apple on this. I’m not sure what you can’t find. using the browse function gets you through some broad areas and if you use the search function you can find most everything by keyword. Only weird thing was when I search for technology the text listing gave me a whole lot more hits than the view with the art work showing. Keep trying, Todd. Great show by the way. Been listening for over a year now.

  8. Tester says

    Boy you really have it bad against Apple on this. I’m not sure what you can’t find. using the browse function gets you through some broad areas and if you use the search function you can find most everything by keyword. Only weird thing was when I search for technology the text listing gave me a whole lot more hits than the view with the art work showing. Keep trying, Todd. Great show by the way. Been listening for over a year now.

  9. says

    Apple has given us some great tools to make podcasting possible, but I think it’s up to us to promote our work. Thanks to Wendy for the comments about how to promote an iTunes
    podcast. I have been wanting to learn more about this as my podcast hasn’t received much notice yet. Any other ideas would be much appreciated.