Paraka (paraka) wrote,

Podfic Thoughts...

I want to take a moment to talk about podfic (are you guys surprised?). Obviously, I'm a little obsessed with it; I love it to pieces. I know it hasn't caught on for a lot of fandoms and it's not every one's thing and that's ok. I'm not going to try and make anyone like it who doesn't.

But, the thing is, I've stumbled across quite a few conversations lately (mostly on LJ and Twitter) where people have been talking about why they don't like podfic. And, again, if you don't like podfic, you don't like podfic, I'm not going to try and convince you otherwise. However one of the reasons I keep seeing cited for not liking podfic is that they can read the fic faster in their heads than the podficer reads out loud.

Which is totally true, however it misses the point of podfic, and that's what I want to talk about. Because, I can read the lyrics of a song much faster (and sometimes with greater understanding) than I can listen to the song. That doesn't mean I'm going to stop listening to music. While the lyrics of a song are really important, they're only one part of a whole.

And the story is a much larger percentage of the whole of a podfic than the lyrics are of a song but my point is that listening to a podfic is a different experience than just reading a fic. Or, at least, as a podficer I hope that my readers are getting more than that. Podfic isn't just a format shift, it's not just an accessibility issue. If it were, you could just use a screen reader and be done with it, it would certainly be a lot less work.

And I get that if you're just sitting there listening to podfic, as you would sit to read, it can seem slow. But I would suggest to people who feel that way, to maybe try listening to it in other ways before giving up on it. Instead of just sitting there, do something while listening. Like knitting, data entry (god, podfic saved my life when I did data entry full time), cooking, cleaning or exercising. One of the biggest appeals of podfic, to me personally, is that it allows me to consume fanfic at times when I can't read.

And, you know, some people appreciate that podfic is slower. I've seen more than one person comment (myself included) that when listening at a slower pace, they pick up the nuances of a story that they missed as they sped through the text.

I guess I just want people to realize that podfic isn't an alternative to fic, it's something very different from it. So yeah, don't feel obligated to like podfic just because you like fic, but please, don't compare the two like they're the same thing either.
Tags: meta, podfic
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