Years ago, San Diego had a pirate radio station. Its founders lugged around a towering handmade antenna and broadcasted over the FM airwaves illegally and in secret. Those close enough to the rogue signal could pick it up at 96.9.
Folks rejoiced: Finally, the democratization of the radio waves! Radio-making was no longer reserved for the few who landed jobs at a broadcast station.
But the proliferation of the internet changed everything. Now, thanks to podcasts, almost anyone can make a radio show – no bulky handmade antenna required. Thousands of people are recording audio and uploading it to distribution platforms like iTunes. “Serial,” the hit true-crime podcast that launched in 2014, pushed the medium in front of a bigger, more mainstream audience. Billions of people are now listening to podcasts.
Finally, the actual democratization of the radio waves!
San Diego hasn’t missed the trend. More than 100 people are part of the San Diego Podcasters meetup group. Podcasters are producing dozens of shows across the region.
There’s a local podcast about Burning Man culture and the people who live the so-called burner lifestyle even when they return from the annual art and music event. There’s one called “Gutter Talk,” about comic books and their creators. A local fictional 1950s-style detective radio podcast drama series called “Rex Rivetter: Private Eye” recently launched. And another locally made podcast offers tips for navigating life as a highly sensitive person. I compiled as extensive a list as I could.