The David & David Show: Podcasting and Videocasting Bootcamp

Led by David Free (Georgia Perimeter College) and David Lee King (Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library), this hands-on, experiential workshop went over all of the tools to create podcasts and videocasts. I always find these types of workshops extremely helpful as it really demystifies the process. During the course of the workshop, the Davids requested help from volunteers (one of them being our own Ruth) in creating their CiL2007 podcast and videocast.

Many libraries are successfully doing regular podcasts for library instruction, book talks, interviews, and non-copyrighted storytimes. Among the ideas tossed around at the bootcamp that I think is just brilliant is the idea of doing library audio tours in foreign languages. Wouldn’t that be cool to have Russian, Korean, and Spanish tours?

What is needed for podcasting? The monetary outlay to begin podcasting is minimal; staff time is the biggest resource drain. However, David Free says that once you actually become comfortable with the software, the time it takes to create a podcast drops. We would need a USB microphone (ranging from $20-$100), software (Audacity available for free), and space for hosting the audio files. David said that it’s best if the files can be hosted locally, but that there are perfectly usable and free podcast hosting sites (blip.tv for example). David’s presentation materials are here. He is currently writing a book on podcasting in libraries.

Videocasting requires more equipment and staff time than podcasting, but there are so many innovative ideas that would be fantastic for libraries. Besides the traditional library activities like book talks, bibliographic instruction, library PR, and tutorials, videocasts could be used to

  • create a video history of the community
  • broadcast local library news or behind the scenes library footage
  • invite community leaders in to talk about their areas of expertise
  • videoblog of local attractions
  • issues forum for local political candidates (as television often does not cover smaller communities and races).
All of these ideas could be used to harness the collective brain of the community. Think about getting non-library people involved in creation of the videocasts, either behind the scenes or in front of the camera.

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