The Podcast Index & Podcast 2.0 Namespace

There has been a lot of excitement around podcasting legend Adam Curry's Podcast Index and Podcasting 2.0 namespace.

For those that follow some of the OG podcasters, it may be closer to momentary delirium. 😆

There has been plenty of intrigue and a few interesting headlines. 🧐

Why all the excitement? Well, when people intend to compete with Apple Podcasts, with historic podcasting clout, it’s worth paying attention. 

Without diving deep into the tech, we’ll share a high-level look at the basics of who it is for, what it is, and lastly, does Libsyn support it.

Who is the Podcast Index for?

Podcastindex.org known as the Podcast Index, is intended for three groups of people (according to founders Adam Curry and Dave Jones in episode from Podcasting 2.0):

  1. People who make podcasts. 
  2. People who listen to podcasts. 
  3. Software developers in the podcast industry.

Here is a fun bit of podcasting history, Adam Curry is often referred to as the Podfather. He and his friend Dave Winer invented podcasting in 2004. Later that same year, Libsyn was founded.

All right, back to the Podcastindex.org.

What is the Podcast Index?

The Podcast Index has two parts to it that are sometimes used interchangeably and there are a couple variations floating around so first we want to clarify a little vocabulary and how we will use them below.

The Podcast Index is the totality of the name of the index/directory that Adam Curry is building with David Jones.

Podcast 2.0 namespace is essentially the grouping of tags that are being developed by the Podcast Index team.

They are often grouped as Podcast 2.0. This is not to be confused with RSS 2.0, which is what Libsyn already delivers.

Per the podcastindex.org website, it aims to preserve podcasting as a platform for free speech by enabling developers to access an open, categorized index that will always be available for free, for any use.

Adam Curry and Dave Jones are focused on building an Apple Podcasts directory competitor/alternative. A podcast directory sans the control of corporate motives or management. 

Why does this matter? Many of the current podcast apps, aggregators, and directories scrape Apple Podcasts database and pull them in as the foundation and, in some places, are the sole source of content. 

There are hundreds of aggregator apps and podcasts relying on Apple for the content they provide to listeners because they have the most extensive library of content. 

We are not making a better/worse comparison here; simply pointing out The Podcast Index’s intent is to provide an alternative to the Apple database. There is no arguing Apple and Adam have both done a lot for podcasting.

The goal of the Podcast 2.0 namespace per the Podcast Index site is “to create a wholistic RSS namespace that is meant to synthesize the fragmented world of podcast namespaces. Our hope is that this namespace will become the framework that the independent podcast community needs to deliver new functionality to apps and aggregators.” 

The new namespace for podcasters primarily means the addition of new tags.

As a side note, Podcasting 2.0 is Adams’s podcast, where he talks about the Podcast Index development. If you are interested in this topic and want more information straight from the source, subscribe to the show

Supporting the added tags and feed extensions outlined in the Podcast 2.0 namespace is at the center of the discussion for podcast hosting providers. Some have already adopted it.

Does Libsyn Support the Podcast Index and Podcast 2.0 Namespace?

For the greatest level of clarity on this question we encourage you to listen to the discussion of Rob Greenlee and Rob Walch on the upcoming episode 184 of The Feed.

Following what Adam Curry does in podcasting is kind of in our blood if you recall.

Our very name Libsyn, is the combination of Liberated and Syndication. We are still fiercely dedicated to the importance of free speech, just like the Podcast Index.

It is important to distinguish between being supportive of the Podcast 2.0 namespace by means of supporting this endeavor through conversation and advocacy, and deeper support of it’s associated tags on Libsyn. This is the kind of support that some podcast hosts are offering.

We do not currently have an ETA on making the Podcast 2.0 namespace tags a part of the Libsyn interface but we are supportive of the effort overall and are prioritizing continued work on the Libsyn 5 interface.

Libsyn is working towards and planning for greater support as reflected in the words of Rob Greenelee:

we are very supportive of what Adam is doing over there, with trying to come up with some new ideas in the medium. And, I do believe that we will probably ultimately wind up, supporting most, if not all of what’s going on over there.

 We hope to share more on that timing in the future, and appreciate your patience in the meantime.

 

TL;DR

  • Podcast 2.0 is being developed for everyone in podcasting.
  • Podcast 2.0 namespace is essentially a grouping of tags and the Podcast Index is a new directory that uses them.
  • Libsyn is looking into supporting most if not all of the Podcast 2.0 namespace tags in the interface at a later date.
 

 If you would like to voice your interest in support of the Podcast Index
or have feedback for our team, you can drop it to us here at [email protected].

 

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