Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How long to continue?

I never want to see the Unseen Podcast become an institution - something that continues on indefinitely for its own sake. It should always serve some purpose, and when either it fails to serve that purpose, or energies, time and funds can better serve the same purpose in other ways, then we close the book and move on. We should always be able to justify the time and energy we put into the podcast, as well as the hour or more each week that we ask of you to listen to us talking.

I communicated to the team yesterday that I intend to make a decision in a few months about whether to continue with the Unseen Podcast, and the set of criteria I expect to consider in making that decision. The decision will be to either commit to continue for about one more year before again reconsidering, or to announce the final episode and be done - not a sad, sputtering, fade but a definitive closing.

To boil it down, the decision will revolve around clear progress toward building a committed, open community around a steadily improving podcast that remains true to its values.

If you enjoy listening to the podcast, and would like to see it continue to episode 100 and beyond, here are some of the things you can do.
  1. Join the panel pool, or encourage someone else to join. Once in the panel pool, consider becoming a host, or even a producer. Commit to being on a panel a least once a year, and engage with the topics threads as they come up.
  2. Engage with us on our listener community, our subreddit, on Twitter, our Facebook page, or this blog. Ask your questions, make comments or suggestions, tell us when we got our facts wrong, or recommend topics or a special guest for the show.
  3. Share episode links on social media to help us find our audience.
  4. Help defray our costs by pledging a small monthly amount at Patreon.


  1. An alternative to consider would be to make the Unseen podcast once every two weeks, or once a month.

  2. I agree; weekly is a pretty punishing schedule. The other issue, I think, is that the whole concept of the podcast is a bit unfocused. With the WOW Signal, you know its going to be focused on SETI or astrobiology and very similar topics. With Unseen, it's too scattershot, which is why we struggle to settle on topics.

  3. I am considering the option to change the tempo. However, if we produce half the content, it's not clear that it's half the effort for me, or that the per episode engagement will improve. Might be worth trying, though.