While I am in love with my ipod and am not more intrigued by podcasts than my previous ramblings, I am not one who is taking the leap of assumption that the next great thing is going to be “video” iPods and “VideoCasts”. Nope, I am not convinced at all. I can easily be wrong, but follow my thoughts.
It bears some consideration of the media, and how we access it. Audio content is something we are able to tune in to and listen while we do other tasks. That is one of the big reasons podcasting and publishing digital audi has a lot of potential– it gives people the flexibility and opportunity to access content (be it Cats Purring Sea Chanties or audio books, or shudder the thought, “lectures”) while they are doing other things- it makes use of time we are exercising, commuting, traveling, to access content. Audio works well in multitasking.
I cannot imagine the same for video. To tune into to video content, you are required (or should) be focusing on it, and it is not something you can do while doing other things (well maybe on the plane or the bus). Video content does not take advantage of your “down time” or “busy time”- it needs time of its own.
More factors- audio content is much easier to produce, especially for mere mortals. Yes I know video editing is easier, but you are still dealing with a more complex media, having to have decent equipment not only for the sound but lighting, etc.
Audio content is also less bandwidth intensive, especially when appropriately compressed.
While I think the subscription model of podcasts may have some value for distribution of video content, I remain to be convinced that video content will have the same impact and bang that audio does. Don;t make the leap from audio content to video content without considering the differences in the media.