Storytelling's New Clothes

03 OCTOBER 2017
The rise of audio is as much about stories as technology.

There has been a boom in podcasts as a narrative form in the last 3 years. Following the huge success of Serial (10 million downloads), podcasts on just about any topic imaginable have become one of the fastest growing mediums in Australia and across the world.

In a recent feature on this audio renaissance in Good Weekend Magazine, Michael Bodey points to the ease of access to podcasts and audio books via smart phone apps. He explores how podcasts are not only filling the void of long commutes, but also looks at a more human motivation for their success: ‘Storytelling is at the heart of all cultures’.

The authors of a new Cambridge University Press resource, Media Reframed, write that ‘podcasting offers a unique passage into storytelling... a podcast creator can tell a story to a single audience member in an intimate and personal way that is rivalled only by literature.’

Podcast consultant Susan Davis is quoted in Bodey’s feature saying “podcasts have concentrated on storytelling, which is exactly what we are all yearning for”.

The podcast has had a rapid second coming not only due to the ease of access for users but also for creators who need little more than a smart phone to create their own audio story.

Students of VCE Media have the opportunity to look at this increasingly popular media form as part of their studies. Media Reframed looks at several recent examples of successful podcasts – Serial, Dollop and WTF with Marc Maron – to demonstrate to students the wide variety of topics that can be covered in a podcast.

Offering an ideal balance between theory and practice, Media Reframed VCE Units 1–4 gives students the opportunity to analysis a podcast looking at the storytelling style and its influence, and also to create and edit a podcast themselves. View sample pages of this innovative new resource here.


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