Beyond the Mic!
Taking your podcasting (and listening) further
May, I mean Africa Month is already over! So many of you created original content to reach across Africa. Thank you again for showing up and making sure Africa was heard and seen in the podcast space in a month where we get to continue the journey to a united African continent. Speaking of this month’s roundup - I share how African podcasters can go beyond their mic and make their podcasts more accessible as well as a collection of new reads to help level up production behind the scenes of podcast production no matter what your budget is.
Our team is delighted to bring you Sema Nasi podcast - reliable takes on African podcasting, which is currently exclusive to subscribers of this Newsy newsletter. If you are reading this and you are not subscribed yet, make sure you do by the end of the read. Below is the cover photo that allowed Sema Nasi (talk with us in Kiswahili) podcast by Africa Podfest to come alive. Melissa Mbugua and I were captured below by Marcus Olang' of Stills By Marcus at Baraza Media Lab in Nairobi.
This month I got to pen a piece How podcasting is taking Africa by storm / Le podcasting prend l'Afrique d'assaut for UN’s Africa Renewal magazine that goes out to over 200 news outlets across Africa. As we have said here, the rise (and rise) of African podcasts will be continent wide and we thank the Africa Renewal team for taking the story further.
Mnyaka Sururu Mboro deserves all African recognition for the work he has done to pursue African art abroad and make sure it is returned to the country of origin - in recognition of the sacredness of the objects. If you listen to one global news podcast about Africa this month, let it be VICE’s Return To: Country of Origin. Also African football fans will appreciate the recap of the end of the 2020/21 Premier League by Nigerian Calvin Emeka Onwuka on his Your Sports Memo podcast.
May the ending of another May open all the doors for African podcasters and supporters everywhere.
Josephine Karianjahi, Co-Director - Africa Podfest
African podcasters showed up on Africa Day on Clubhouse - the talk African Podcasters and their Cultural Impact brought together the combined African and diaspora journeys of moderators Dubai Dennis (The General Mutombo Uncut podcast), Hana Baba (The Stoop Podcast), Tabitha Njeri (Co-host, Matirí Ngemi Podcast, & How to ManageR podcast) and Sambaza (Sambaza Podcast). Review notes courtesy of Stephen of Sambaza Podcast
AfricaDay webinar for Radio Workshop: Radio Workshop’s invaluable first pan African extended podcast training (at no cost to attendees) invited Melissa Mbugua and Josephine Karianjahi as codirectors to share the Africa Podfest story on their May 25 webinar.
Africa Podfest also released the 30 minute recap of Africa Podcast Day 2021 to mark Africa Day. This is one video you do not want to miss - as it crystallises over 20 hours of virtual and in person takes of the Community Events and Africa Podfest. It was created by RJ Films Kenya. We are honoured to be part of a part of new media history in Africa through your generous participation as individuals and organization sponsors.
Making Africa’s Podcasts Accessible
Accessibility has been a significant theme this month, starting with this piece which was shared widely - Lets Make Podcasts More Accessible which Caroline Minck wrote for Sounds Profitable. Minck shares key areas where podcasters are losing audiences because their podcasts are simply less accessible to those who are deaf and hard of hearing. This month ends with the highly anticipated Spotify announcement that they are introducing auto-generated podcast transcripts across iOs and Android. This feature will automatically generate transcripts for these shows, allowing users to read the text of the specific podcasts on their phones either with or without sound. This is a beta rollout but it appears it will be rolled out more widely in the future.
Opportunities and Resources
Events coming up in June
Acast UK presents Black Voices - a spotlight featuring Black podcast voices beyond the US, a free event featuring Afroqueer podcast’s Selly Thiam among other leading Black pod creators. - June 2
How to Start a Podcast - LIVE! is free to listen to all of the recorded episodes of the live streams - June 10-12 2021
Francophone: Podcast authors: better understanding your rights and contracts by Longueur d'Ondes offers a free webinar for authors in order to implement transparent and responsible social and contractual practices on Wednesday, June 2
We get a lot of asks on which tools would help African podcasters create more affordably. We Edit Podcasts has released a list of 13 tools to help one podcast in a more pocket friendly way. Also: as we roll deeper into the second year of the pandemic, many who can make pods are doing so from home - and this helpful guide from Squadcast shares 5 Tips For The At-Home Podcaster. For those who are struggling with motivation to create pods, here is a timely article on how to record your podcast when you don’t feel motivated. For the more tech savvy podcasters among you - here is a handy guide to DIY Acoustic Panels
It has become almost standard for many African podcasters to post their shows on Youtube - here is a read on whether it is really worth putting your podcast on Youtube. Also, a lot of new African podcasts are in the audio drama arena - which makes budgeting for audiodramas worth exploring. Lastly, for those in marketing thinking of how podcasting in Africa can work for you, take a look at Media Update’s 6 things brands need to know about podcasts
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Africa Podfest inspires and elevates African podcasters to build a sustainable and inclusive podcasting industry across Africa. Our intention is to achieve this by simplifying podcast learning, placing a spotlight on African podcasters, and centring voices that have been in the margins. We welcome support from individuals and institutions. Email us to inquire about institutional partnership email@example.com