Floodgates, swung forth: Podchaser’s open beta begins today

Hey, everybody.

Today marks an exciting milestone for us. After a jam-packed three months, we’re opening up sign-ups for Podchaser to everybody. When we launched as an invite-only site way back in June, we expected a trickle of users to filter in — our reach goal was 1,000 testers, at best.

Approaching 90 days later, we’re somewhere between astonished and elated to have amassed over 5,000 users and 20,000 ratings on Podchaser. We’re still scratching our heads about how a tightly closed beta surged to generate the results it did; you all clearly took the key-sharing to heart!

Speaking of keys — they’re gone. Been angling to peruse Podchaser to see what’s trending, browse reviews, and listen to your favorite episodes? Nothing is stopping you, so jump right in! And if you’re looking to leave your own ratings and reviews, all you’ve got to do is commit the 20 seconds needed to make an account, and you’re good to go — no hassling with invitations. As we keep releasing new features, we’ll continue to look for your feedback on what you like and what you think needs work. But at this point, we’re proud enough of Podchaser’s beta that we think everyone should be able to jump in. (So share away!)

So, what’s on Podchaser’s horizon? We’ve got a bunch of sweet features in the pipeline.

  • You’ll notice a Categories subsection now, making it easier to check, at a glance, what’s trending across genres and topics. More to come on that.
  • For our podcasters, keep an eye out for podcast claiming. We’re working with hosts to ensure you have a say in how it’s displayed and are able to assign it to a network.
  • The People functionality (a “who’s who” in the world of podcasting) is also well underway, along with shareable lists, an IMDb-esque discussion board, user-inputted category ranking, richer tagging features, more advanced filtering, user profiles, and way too many additional goodies to count.

We’ll do our best to keep you all posted on these updates. If you’d like to test things along the way before we deploy, make sure to check out our Slack for day-to-day feature discussion.

As we flip our calendar pages to September, we want to express our gratitude to you all for making our site such a success this early on. Podchaser’s most important asset is an engaged community, sharing ratings and reviews with one another to highlight the best in podcasting. For that alone, we thank you for surpassing all of our expectations. Happy listening!

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