User driven skeptical podcast

By Phil Plait | July 25, 2009 8:32 am

There are a ton of really good skeptical podcasts out there, like Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe, Skepticality, Point of Inquiry, Skeptoid, George Hrab, and so on. These are generally professionally-done ‘casts made by people with long experience in the field.

But they had to start somewhere, right? At some point in the past, these folks were just people who had something to say and wanted their voices heard. So if you’re like that too — opinionated, willing to back up your claims, and dying to get the message out — but lack a platform, what can you do? Starting your own podcast can be daunting.

If that sounds fmailiar, then you should check out Skeptographers. This is a community-driven podcast where anyone can upload content and have it aired. Of course, there are some caveats; they can’t simply take anything submitted, but there are guidelines on how to do it.

I think this is an interesting idea. The whole point of the internet is that it’s egalitarian; people who have quality content can flourish, and if you suck, people won’t listen. Well, usually. But that’s the idea, anyway. A podcast like this can get people who otherwise don’t have much of a voice online a chance to be heard. And if they’re good, then they may break out and be followed. It’s not without precedent; 365 Days of Astronomy has a similar basis.

So head over to Skeptographers, give it a listen (the pilot episode is already online) and if you have something to say, then say it.


Comments (21)

  1. Hypatia

    I think this is an excellent project!!!

    Speak up!!!


  2. Meanwhile, on Jupiter…

    I guess I’ll head back over to CNN.

  3. Jean-francois

    Similar user driven podcast existed before 365 days of astronomy, one for example is the hacker public radio. A podcast about open source and free software like Gnu/Linux or BSD. Its been active since 2007.
    Such project is a really good place to test new podcast ideas or just to publish one shot material that might be too short to be in podcast format.

  4. Not on iTunes yet. What can be done to hasten this?
    Ideas, anyone?

  5. I guess I’ll head back over to CNN.

    You do that. Let us know when they actually report something new. I’m not the sort who enjoys having the same list of trivia repeated at me all day to fill the time between celebrity news. Thanks.

  6. Well, they did have Hubble photos of Jupiter. Silly me for thinking more info would be here.

  7. This Project has been generating a lot of excitement since we announced it. Please feel free to register an account and start submitting your ideas.

    Richard we will have the iTunes feed available soon, once we have a couple of episodes ready.

    of the Skeptographers team

  8. I’ll definitely be joining in! ^_^

  9. Lucci

    You forgot to mention This Week in Science, a very interesting radio show and podcast.

  10. My one beef with the 365 days of astronomy is that the entire year filled up very quickly. I guess I misunderstood the format, and didn’t know that just ANYONE could submit (my own fault) and it wasn’t until April that I learned otherwise (when one of my bloggy-friends recorded one). I was so excited that I could do my “Political Economy of Astronomy” talk in this format, and lo! The entire year was already booked.


    Therefore, I’ll take my ball to the Skeptographers!

  11. Joseph

    Myth Busters! Robot, Zombie, Pirate, Ninjas!

  12. An ordinary podcatching RSS feed will be nice to for those of us who don’t, won’t or can’t use iTunes too please.
    Otherwise, great concept and I can’t wait to hear more.

  13. Don’t worry Shane, as the non-iTunes user among the production team, I’ll make sure that we get a feed up for the other programs.

    –Skeptographers Production Team–

  14. Charles J. Slavis, Jr.
  15. Charles J. Slavis, Jr.

    Don’t they have spectacle comedians?

  16. Charles J. Slavis, Jr.

    Spectacle comedians are sometimes blind to the truth.

  17. Charles J. Slavis, Jr.

    Skeptical comedians find humor in the truth.

  18. Thank you, Nathan & Marion! I’ll be sure to download regularly through iTunes. Those RSSers out there can use the route of their choice! Schweet!

    I got my second & third 365 Days of Astronomy podcast slots by “the skin of my teeth” as it were. There were only 3 days left empty and I got 2 of them. I wanted to be sure to do some podcasts to highlight UVa’s Astronomy Department efforts. Then there was a no-show and I chipped in with yet another podcast to fill the void.

    The Skeptographers podcast series could run basically forever, eh?
    Though initially shows will come every 2 weeks, it could ultimately be daily, weekly or whateverly (?) as needed and as shows are provided.
    I’ve added my name to the roster, my voice to follow soon!

  19. Thank you Richard for showing interest in the project. Anybody with questions or concerns can feel free to e-mail them to

  20. MartyM

    I love this podcast but it’s a bit narrow in scope. Fun nonetheless.

    Reasonable Doubts


Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!


See More

Collapse bottom bar