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Escape Pod and Podcastle need your help!

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The three sf fiction podcasts run by Escape Artists (Escape Pod, Podcastle, and Pseudopod) are in dire need of donations to avoid having to shut down. To donate or subscribe, follow the links on that linked page.

For many more details, listen to the “metacast” on that linked page.

Some tidbits from the metacast (I'm paraphrasing, and I may have some details wrong): Only 1% of their listeners have donated this year. The number of listeners has gone way up, but the number of donors has gone down. Most of their money goes to paying authors, paying server costs, and token payments to staff. If they can't increase their income, they're going to have to shut down at the end of this year.

I mostly don't listen to podcasts of any kind (though I make occasional exceptions, such as for Julia Rios's excellent reading of Claire Humphrey's excellent SH story “Who in Mortal Chains”), but I'm donating anyway, because I think the Escape Pod podcasts are serving an important function in our community. I've lost track of the number of people who've told me that they don't really read the sf magazines but they do listen to Escape Pod and/or Podcastle; my anecdata suggests that the podcasts are making short sf accessible to a lot of people who wouldn't ordinarily encounter it. It's great that various magazines (such as Clarkesworld and SH) have started doing audio versions of their stories (and I encourage people to listen to those, too!), but the Escape Pod podcasts provide high-profile centralized access to stories from a range of venues.

So if you listen to the Escape Pod podcasts, or if you just want to support them, head on over and send them some money. You can do a one-time donation or a subscription; they've added what I gather is a new subscription level of $2/month.

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