Last Word on The Bitchspot Report

Bitchspot Report New IconI know I’ve been putting this off for a while now and I’ve gotten a couple of e-mails over on the podcast site asking when the show was coming back.  I’m sorry I haven’t answered but I’ve really avoided having to address it because I kept going back and forth on the whole thing and didn’t know exactly what I should say.  But I guess the time has come to say it.

The podcast is dead.

It’s not because I hated doing it, but a whole bunch of shit came up at work and I spent much of the past 4 months doing an absurd number of hours, to the point that I couldn’t even predict from day to day when I might even be available to record a podcast, much less edit one.  While things have stabilized a little bit now, I don’t know when things will be back to normal, if they will ever be back to normal.  I actually consider myself lucky that I had that window of opportunity to record for the shows we did.  Seriously, the amount of time it took to edit the podcast was really prohibitive and I don’t think people understand that. Not only did it take 2-3 hours a week to record, it took another 6-7 hours to edit.  You’re looking at 8-10 hours a week to put out a 90-minute product every single week, that just got to be excessive and instead of looking forward to recording every week, I used to dread it because I knew what it meant.

Beyond that, and this should come as no surprise considering the New Year’s post that I made here, I really felt like we were just retreading old ground  all the time.  I mean, how many “oh look, Pat Robertson said something stupid” or “oh look, Gordon Klingenschmitt is an idiot” stories can you do over and over again?  Nothing new ever happens in the world of religion, it’s the same old stupid people saying the same old stupid things.  Nothing new really ever happens in politics either, it’s just stupid political story A or stupid political story B time and time again.  Whereas I started out looking for really good stories to sink our teeth into every week, it got to be an exercise in “here we go again” and I think that at the end, you could hear it in my voice. Just listen to how many times I’d introduce stories and have to say “again”.  It was a lot.

The other “funny” thing, and I say “funny” because it actually makes me chuckle, is that we never really had a guest on the air that seriously disagreed with us.  We’d get these semi-upset e-mails, people who wanted to come on and take us to task, and by the time they got on the air, it turned out they agreed with us more than not.  We never got any angry guests!  We never got anyone who told us we were wrong and got into a good, solid, adversarial debate on anything.  That’s what I wanted but it never happened.  Granted, I got to meet a lot of really great people and made a lot of really good friends, but really, where were all the liberal atheists who were going to come on and put us evil conservatives in our place?  Where were the theists who were going to put the atheists to shame?  It just never happened.

That’s not to say I’d be averse to doing another podcast sometime.  I loved spending a couple hours with Mike every week, he’s a great guy and a ton of fun to be around and I wish him all the luck in the world in his other podcasting endeavors.  Assuming I had the time, and that’s not a guarantee right now, but I’ll pretend for the moment, I wouldn’t mind jumping into a podcast, probably with a different format, and just having fun recording with some great people.  I think my days as primary editor are done.  I have neither the time nor the interest in spending hour after hour cutting out every gaffe and verbal tic.  Of course, one thing that doing a podcast like that has taught me, I really, really hate all the verbal tics in a lot of podcasts.  There’s one that I’ve listened to for a long time and finally, I couldn’t do it anymore because one host says “uh huh” about 147 times a minute.  I mean, I’m not a perfect radio personality myself, far from it, but come on!

So this officially ends the era of The Bitchspot Report Podcast.  I’m going to leave the other site up so people can listen to the old episodes.  I will take the links from my other blogs down.  Please let me know if any of them go bad and I’ll see what I can do.  Thanks for coming along on the ride, it was a blast.

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7 Responses to Last Word on The Bitchspot Report

  1. Rick K. says:

    Sorry to see the podcast go away, but you’re right about repeating yourselves a lot with news and such. It was cool to occasionally hear that you and Mike were doing okay with yourselves, though.

    The funny thing about the liberal/progressive atheists is, they often seem to be oblivious to the existence of atheists who might hold differing views. I had to tell this to several doing podcasts themselves. More often than not, they seemed surprised by the information. Some actually took it in and modified their comments accordingly, while others just pretended they hadn’t heard. Doesn’t the latter sound a lot like what the fervently religious frequently do?

    Also had to remind them that not all old white guys are rich and privileged — rather, most come from middle class backgrounds, or are even less well off. Some have it downright bad… I considered for a while doing a podcast about older atheists, but didn’t really find enough news to make it worth doing. Plus, I found out what a pain it is for a complete amateur like me to do editing, so I decided to devote my time elsewhere.

    I guess we’ll have to remind the liberal/progressive folks that not all atheists are also liberal, progressive, or secular humanists, and that some atheists hold to an egalitarian viewpoint rather than considering one or more particular groups of humans to be more important than others.

    • Cephus says:

      The funny thing is, I found most self-identified “liberal atheists” to be pretty conservative, most of them who came on the show had some pretty conservative views, yet didn’t identify that at all. In fact, recently I’ve been asking self-identified liberals who spend most of their time complaining about how liberals act and what liberals believe why they bother identifying as liberals in the first place and they don’t seem to want to talk about it. Imagine that.

      Don’t get discouraged because you’re an amateur, I was the same way when I started editing the show. I’m completely self-taught. I just jumped in and learned how to do it all and I’d like to think that I got better at it as time went on. The only potential problem with doing a show about older atheists is that you wouldn’t have much of a listenership because podcasts are generally a thing for the youngish. It was a problem we had with this podcast, most atheists are generally liberal, therefore most don’t want to listen to a podcast from a different perspective. Funny, that doesn’t seem to stop conservative atheists from listening to podcasts from a liberal perspective. Maybe we’re just more tolerant.

      Take care and thanks for coming along on this crazy ride.

  2. It was a great podcast. Thanks to Mike and you for a great time. I must say I agree with you about the guests though. I always found that there was more agreement than disagreement. This is interesting in itself, that it showed that people are not as closely as they align themselves when they use the label liberal or progressive etc.

    • Cephus says:

      But a lot of the guests were people who e-mailed in and wanted to take us on, yet when they got on the air, they didn’t have much disagreement with what we were saying. I don’t know if they really didn’t have the views they seemed to have or if they didn’t want to raise a ruckus on the air with people who were willing to debate their issues, I was just really looking forward to a serious on-air fight and I never got one. Oh sure, maybe if we had PZ Myers or any of his asshole brigade on, we might have gotten it but I don’t think those people would ever consent to get outside of their echo chamber.

      I also regret not being able to get more educational but I don’t know that the podcast format is very conducive to that. Plus, a lot of topics that people need education on, the people who would benefit from it, mostly theists, aren’t going to listen anyhow. A lot of that got dropped in favor of more “pointing and laughing”, which, while entertaining, wasn’t really the goal of the show from the start.

      • Rick K. says:

        Education can be done in a podcast. Robert M. Price’s Bible Geek is a great example of such. Mostly, though, it needs to have a solid focal point to work from. Reading the latest news and discussing how crazy people can be is good for a laugh, but not really all that educational. Your blog posts about what to say to theists and the like are much more helpful in that regard.

        Anthony Magnabosco has a few videos on YouTube that act as tutorials for doing Street Epistemology. His approach is interesting, and he has incredible amounts of self-control and patience with theists. I can’t stay that calm, because their arguments invariably pare down to faith at the core. And if you say the wrong thing at the wrong time, you could end up scaring the theist into becoming even more entrenched. Nonetheless, the videos are educational.

        So I guess it really comes down to how the medium is approached, and how rigorous the hosts are about staying focused and on-point. Then again, I’ve never done a podcast, so my opinion here is probably worth less than the electrons moved to type these words…

        • Cephus says:

          Yet the people who need the education aren’t typically the ones listening to such a podcast. I occasionally listen to Reasonable Doubts and they are a much more educational podcast than, say, Cognitive Dissonance. I would doubt that the number of theists who need that education and listen to the podcast are minimal. Podcasts tend, with rather few exceptions, to gather a circle of followers who already agree with the subject matter of the podcast, and this isn’t only true of podcasts but blogs and everything else. People don’t tend to go where they are uncomfortable being, yet that’s exactly what is required for those who need to be shown reality.

          I no longer have much, if any patience for theists. I probably did once, but the rampant stupidity and self-imposed blindness to reality really makes it pointless to spend much time arguing the same absurd points time and time again because the vast majority of them will never change their minds no matter what you do. Arguing with theists is exactly the same as arguing with conspiracy theorists (which is why Mike was so good at it all). It’s just a waste of time and energy the overwhelming majority of the time because these people are unwilling to listen to arguments that go against their blind and fanatical faith.

          I’d like to see some podcast actually get somewhere, I haven’t seen any have much success though.

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