From the blog

Some very important news from Podiant

by Mark Steadman, on 22nd October 2017

Hi. This is Mark from Podiant, with a very important update about the future of the platform. Please read this, because it will affect you.

It probably hasn't escaped your notice that, for Podiant, this week has sucked. If you've been affected by the outages, lack of feed updates or other general reliability issues, please know that it hurts us (and me personally) to see the platform struggling. There is a plan for how to fix it, but I'm afraid it's not going to be easy.

How we're moving forwards

Most of our users - the vast, vast majority - use Podiant completely free of charge, and don't subscribe to our Patreon. That's fine, except Podiant is not a large company with millions of dollars of investment behind it, and we don't want to make money off of your content or by selling banner ads. Podiant was designed to give a voice to those who might not have one, built on the belief that the community would support our efforts.

Over the past week we've seen a huge influx of traffic that we're struggling - and often failing - to keep up with. Storage and bandwidth aren't a problem; we just can't afford the computing power right now to handle all the feed requests. So, here's what's happening.

Two new plans: Professional and Community

A change to our pricing structure has been planned since August, and now we're putting it into place. From now on we have two plans: Community and Professional. The Professional plan is just $12.99 a month, and more info on that will be released in the coming days. If you're already on the $15 or $30 plans, I will get in touch with you to help you migrate to our new plan (which offers exactly the same features you already have).

Now, the tricky part.

We can no longer sustain an open-door policy for our free tier, so in the coming days, you'll see a change to your dashboard and a mention of "community entitlement".

All Podiant users either on the free plan or the $5 plan will need to do one of three things:

  • Upgrade to the Professional plan (we have a discount code available)
  • Apply for a space in the Community (you fill in a short form, we assess your application and if your show meets the criteria, you'll get free hosting)
  • Transfer your podcast to another host (via the "cancel subscription" link which you'll see in the next day or so)

Community criteria

Podiant was founded on the idea that when communities band together, they create things of great value. There are lots of other podcast hosts around that just offer free, or inexpensive podcast hosting, but they're backed by ad networks or venture capital. Since we're not, we have to introduce some criteria. Basically all we're looking to know is whether your podcast serves a community that isn't already being served well. It doesn't have to be a lofty goal, but if your show is you and a buddy discussing football or the latest Marvel movies, you probably won't be eligible. Sorry.

So, what's next?

I'll email you again in a day or so, once the changes have been put in place. If you already pay $15 or more per month for your hosting, you'll see the Podiant Professional dashboard, and I'll be in touch with you to migrate your subscription, and save you some money.

If you don't want to - or can't - upgrade, you'll have 90 days from the point the changes go live to find a new host, should your Community application be denied.

Any questions?

I'm sure you'll have lots of questions and concerns. I'm going to be on Reddit from 3pm EST today (Sunday) for at least an hour, and again on Monday . Please come and ask any questions you have. I'll post links on Facebook and Twitter as well, but it's important to keep the conversation in one place so things are clear.

Thanks for reading this, and for your patience. I'll have more positive announcements to bring you soon, but in the meantime please bear with us, and know that none of these decisions were taken lightly or so we can maximise profits. It's all about keeping Podiant alive and functioning the way it should, for all its users.

Sincerely, thank you.
-Mark