Atlantic writer Stephanie Hayes follows up on her earlier article, "Where Are All the Kidcasts?" with the appropriately titled, "The Kidcasts are Coming" about Kids Listen and more recently-discovered podcasts for kids. She writes, "The kidcast space is already looking less empty."
Last week I heard from Lindsay Patterson—a producer of the science showTumble and a major advocate of audio for kids—about an organization for kidcasts she had just helped launch. Kids Listen hopes to promote the creation of top-notch podcasts for children while setting standards and ethics for the space—creating guidelines about the touchy topic of monetization, for instance. Founding members include the producers of Tumble, Ear Snacks, Brains On!, Book Club for Kids, Story Pirates, Sparkle Stories, The Show About Science, and the children’s audio blog Zooglobble.
“We quickly realized that our podcasts didn’t have to have the same subject, market objectives, or strategy in order for us to have some shared goals,” Polly Hall explained over email. “Raising awareness about kids podcasts is an obvious one, but a broader objective is for all of us to get better at what we're doing.“
The organization was borne of a late-night FaceTime between Patterson, her husband and co-producer Marshall Escamilla, and Andrew Barkan and Polly Hall of Ear Snacks. The couples had connected on Twitter, where they had both expressed interest in running a kidcast audience survey. So, Kids Listen’s first initiative is gathering data from parents on how, where, and when their kids listen to podcasts. (The data will be made public late this summer.)
“We think those findings will be interesting to advertisers, researchers, and producers,” said Hall. “For example,” explained Patterson, “if you’re making a podcast for two year olds, how long should it be?” You can find the survey here.