A great podcast can change your life. It can expand your worldview. It can make you spend half an hour in the driveway, in tears, with the lights off and the engine running. It can make you feel a deep connection with someone you’ve never met. A great podcast can make you feel like you’re not alone.
Chorus is a new place for podcasts. It’s where podcasters and listeners come together to share their thoughts, feelings and stories.
There are 3 things that make Chorus special:
1. People-powered podcast recommendations
The best recommendations come from friends and people you respect — they know your tastes, and likely listen to some amazing podcasts you haven’t heard.
We love getting these recommendations so much that we made them a big part of Chorus. It’s easy to make a Recommendation for any episode you want — just pick the episode and add a comment about why you loved it. Everyone that follows you will see your recommendation in their feed.
Tip: Follow interesting people to build a good feed. It’s a good idea to invite friends you always end up talking podcasts with, but also consider following some people you don’t know — you might be pleasantly surprised at what you discover.
2. Communities of podcast-lovers
It’s a lot of fun to talk about podcasts, but it’s hard to join conversations when they’re scattered all over the internet.
We built Communities so that you can easily talk to the podcasters you love (and to other podcast fans), right in the Chorus app. Joining a community is easy — just subscribe to a podcast, and we’ll automatically add you to that podcast’s community.
Tip: If you’re a podcaster, share your Chorus Link to recruit your listeners into your community — it’s a great place to take listener questions and tease upcoming episodes!
3. We ❤️ Podcasters
Many podcasting apps ignore the needs of podcasters, but we’re focused on building the best possible podcaster experience.
Already, podcasters can use Chorus to build an engaged community, recommend episodes to new listeners, and network with other podcasters. Soon, we’ll be releasing ways for them to make money as well.
Tip: If you’re a podcaster, make sure to claim your podcast and get your shoutout link.
Why we’re building Chorus
There are plenty of problems to work on in the podcasting space — here are 3 that get us out of bed early and keep us up late.
Podcasting technology is ~10 years behind
Podcasting apps haven’t changed much over the years — most are still basically RSS readers that innovate by improving equalizers. We think that there are still basic, unsolved problems around how we discover and listen to podcasts, and this version of Chorus is our first stab at solving those problems.
Social media is broken
When Matthew Kulp and I started building social apps together, social media was changing the world. It was toppling fascism and bringing truth to power, and logging onto Twitter felt like looking through a telescope at the stars. It was a wonderful time, and we all felt that social media would bring out the best in us.
Today, it’s clear that platforms like Twitter and Facebook are heading in the wrong direction and taking us with them. Because their business models demand high numbers of micro-impressions, these platforms actively promote our worst instincts — compulsiveness, quickness to judge, tribalism, hive-minded thinking and hatred.
Chorus will be better than that. We’re creating a social network that doesn’t depend on ad revenue or attention-span destroying micro-interactions. Instead, we’re building a place where thoughtfulness is the default, and where diverse opinions are respectfully debated (not hidden).
We still have a lot to figure out in this arena, but we’re well on our way.
Podcast advertising could go the way of radio
Podcasting is rapidly approaching a fork in the road. Down one path lies highly trackable advertisements, pay-per-click, and radio/television-style commercials. Down the other path, podcasters are making great audio for a group of devoted listeners, many of which are paying to support the podcast.
We’ve gone down the first path before with internet, television, and radio. Newspapers and online publishers are fighting for the second path as we speak. Like Medium, Patreon, and many others, we believe that people will pay for good content, if you make it easy. We’re going to help steer the podcasting industry in this direction.
Who we are
Matthew Kulp (founder)— product designer, ex- furniture designer, bottomless repository of chair-knowledge
Alonso Holmes (founder) — product person & engineer, ex- aerospace engineer
Alonzo Felix (advisor) — expert at typography and branding
Ethan Sherr (advisor) — world-class mobile developer
We’d love to hear your thoughts on Chorus and the podcast industry at large. Here are some ways to get in touch with us:
- Press the “send us a message” button on your Account screen in Chorus
- DM or Tweet at us on twitter
- Join our Slack group
We’re also fundraising: firstname.lastname@example.org