Note: I wrote this Sunday afternoon of Dragon*Con.
I've been having a good time at the convention. I’m always am amazed with the number of panels I've been able to attend, along with some of the ones that I either couldn't get into, or walked out of. I'd love to say that I got into all the panels that I wanted to, but with over 40,000 people here, that just wasn’t going to happen.
I was amused at two panels that I went to that contradicted each other. At the Podcast Track, the moderators of the "Podcasting 201" panel cautioned about not falling into the trap of buying fancy equipment, until you're sure that you're going to keep podcasting. At the MMO Podcasting panel, on the other hand, one of the speakers said, "Go ahead" and just buy a good mic right away, because sounding bad will turn off your audience.
I was disappointed with the MMO Podcasting panel. It was more about how the four panelists (really two, the way that they hijacked the panel) did their podcasts, which included too many inside jokes, and almost seemed scripted (which I suspect it was they way they kept looking at their laptops). I would have liked if they had talked about some of the shows (and not just Leveling Azeroth, obviously) that are out on the interwebs. It also would have been good if the moderators had polled the audience to see who were podcasters, and have them promote their shows.
It amused me how the panelists hated Skype, in the same breath as saying how wonderful Leo LaPorte's TWiT network is. TWiT.tv uses Skype almost exclusively. I think that their experience with Skype is colored by their usage. I agree that for more that probably four people, Skype might not be the best option, but a few of their guests and panelists for their podcasts are from Canada. Being the TWiT.tv junkie that I am, I know that the Canadian guests that have been on that network, Skype dies after about an hour. It's been attributed to the ISP Rodgers Communications. It would seem that they don't like the voice over internet competition, so they throttle the service.
So, what did I learn? I learned that my co-host Fidelma and I need to network more, and by that, I mean reach out to other podcasters and have them on our show, and appear on theirs. I already have plans in the works to share links and program bumpers with a musician whose music we've used on the podcast.