The Future of Media

Business Week reports that Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers have invested $10 million in Adam Curry’s podcast network:

This month, pioneer Adam Curry is launching a podcast network, with 30 to 50 shows that will split ad revenues. The concept won Curry a $9.8 million investment from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital, two top venture firms in Silicon Valley. "We saw the amazing adoption across the Net, and it was obvious that there was a big opportunity," says Mark Kvamme, a partner at Sequoia.

After spending 5 minutes with my 5G iPod (VidPod, VodPod?) the killer app is the video- not the voice. I already have several Podcasts (Vodcasts?) that are video-based. Jamming advertising into those podcasts would be a piece of cake. (Check out Channel Frederator if you haven’t already)

With acquisitions like Weblogs Inc. by big media- there’s an incentive to grab viewers/listeners/readers. I’m not sure how they’re going to spend that $10 million, but I’m sure they’ll find a way to do it. Will it give KPCB 50x their money in a (few) year’s time? Doubtful, but they have the connections to sell the network on at a healthy return.


  1. >I already have several Podcasts (Vodcasts?) that are video-based. Jamming advertising into those podcasts would be a piece of cake.

    The real question for me, however, is: do iPod owners _want_ ads on their iPods?

    If people are paying for content–like episodes of “Lost” purchased from the iTunes Music Store–I’m guessing that they will expect the content to be ad-free. This means no ads in the middle of the program, and none at the beginning or end. If ads do get added to content which people are downloading and viewing on their iPods, it probably won’t be long before someone creates an app which skips past the ads (a sort of TiVo for the iPod, if you will).

  2. Andrew, I think you’re right there- I wouldn’t be happy at all to see ads inserted in the episodes of “Lost” that I’ve bought from the iTunes store. However, something like the trailer for A Scanner Darkly ( would be well received as part of the mix at Channel Frederator. Since we’re looking at targeted, niche media, I would hope the advertising would be relevant. I’m all for receiving advertising- adding a slice of serendipity in a programme, pre-selected RSS world…

  3. Not sure how they valuated this thing…

    something tells me it’s going to be a decade till the network turns a profit

    the whole thing sounds very labour intensive

    then again, maybe I’m just not seeing the opportunity

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