From Shifty Jelly’s blog:
That’s an easy question to answer for those that know a bit about the podcasting industry. The industry is amazing because it’s open. Anyone can publish a podcast and distribute it everywhere. No podcast is treated differently than another. However, “open” is not the default state of markets as they mature, as we’ve seen in other content businesses. When power is consolidated into the hands of just a few closed platforms, creators rarely win. And we care deeply about the fate of podcast producers everywhere.
It’s our mission to ensure that this doesn’t happen. If we succeed, we all benefit. If we lose, well, we feel it was a thing worth attempting. In the meantime there are some steps we need to take to get where we want to go, and we’ll talk about those when we’re ready. It’s early days, but we’re really excited for the future. Hope you all are too!
That’s what the guys at Shifty Jelly were doing before they were bought — building an open community around an open medium. I hope I’m wrong, but historically when a private company buys a product, it isn’t to further an “open” agenda, but to benefit their own product(s) at the cost of those who care that podcasts remain the way they are. Perhaps it’s the cynic in me, but while I believe everything they are saying now (I’m sure they believe it too), I’m willing to bet this will slowly change over time, as it has so frequently in the past.