The francophone dating life: a podcast by Pauline Lazarus

Originally from France, Pauline Lazarus sheds light on the cultural differences in the dating lives of French people and Quebecers.

After two months and 10 dates, Ben was convinced he was in a serious relationship. It was to his surprise when he learned he was only considered a friend. 

Pauline Lazarus launched the podcast Une Histoire à part earlier this year, where she invites francophone people to discuss cultural differences between dating customs in France versus Quebec.  

Ben was one of the first guests of the podcast.

“I go out with a guy once, twice, I let myself go up to three times, but by the third time I can tell if I like him enough to have feelings,” Ben, who wanted to stay anonymous, said on the podcast.

When he arrived in Montreal and started dating, Ben quickly understood what it is like to date someone from a different cultural background.

“After kissing a French person, the French consider themselves a couple whereas, for the Quebecers, it is really not the case,” said Noé Klein, a Ph.D. student in sociology at the Université du Québec à Montréal. Klein’s research involves examining friendly and loving relationships between French and Quebecers. 

Already friends before the podcast, it was Ben’s story about coming out in Montreal that inspired Lazarus to create Une Histoire à part. She realized that people across the city have all kinds of stories to share about their dating life.

Lazarus plans to release one episode bi-weekly and sees it as a personal challenge that brings her closer to her lifelong dream to work in radio. 

“When we move to a city, we’re not all running away from something, but maybe we’re all looking to be a better version of ourselves,” Lazarus added.

Not interested in the number of listeners, she is grateful if her podcast can help people by advising on adaptation and cultural differences by showcasing stories like Ben’s, who explained how Montreal helped him to come out to his family.

“When I came to Montreal, I felt free to be myself,” Ben said.

Lazarus came to Montreal five years ago on a Working Holiday Visa.

“I applied without much conviction, I must admit, because I had never talked about Canada in my life. I know that for a lot of people, it’s their dream, they’ve been waiting to come to Canada for several years. For me, it was not at all the case, it was really almost a coincidence,” she said.

Although she didn’t plan to stay longer than the two-year duration of her visa, after four years, Canada has become her home.

“I like to connect and exchange with people, and for me, that also means meeting people,” she said.

Since starting the podcast, Lazarus has met with different people and has noticed clear cultural differences.

“It’s true that even though we’re in Quebec where we speak French, we sometimes have the impression that it’s a bit like France. In the love life, here, it is a little different,” she said.

Lazarus said French people come to Montreal thinking they will be able to connect easily with Quebecers, but this is forgetting that they come from two different continents with an important cultural difference.

One of the most important differences between French people and Quebecers when it comes to dating is the status of “seeing someone” that comes before the discussion about becoming “official,” said Lazarus. 

In his thesis, Ph.D. sociology student Noé Klein explains how the French have a vision of relationships that quickly develops towards becoming a couple, whereas Quebecers have this notion of “seeing someone,” a period when they enter an intimate relationship in which one person gradually gets to know the other. 

“It takes more time for Quebecers to see themselves as a “couple” but when they do, it is something much more defined and committed than for the French, who have a blurrier definition of the term,” said Klein.

In Une Histoire à part, Lazarus introduces dating anecdotes in light of these differences for the listeners to avoid bad surprises.

In addition to the definition of “couple” itself, Lazarus discovered that for many, the openness of the city also leads to the openness of relationships. 

“Montreal is a very open city, both culturally and in other ways,” Lazarus said.

Even though she no longer lives in France, she agrees that the trend of open relationships or poly-love is much more democratized in Montreal than in France.

Always eager to learn and welcome people, Lazarus likes to make people feel comfortable when they share their experiences.

On a late Sunday afternoon, Pauline Lazarus opens a bottle of champagne and places it on the coffee table before settling into her sofa. With two microphones and her recorder in hand, a discussion begins between two friends over a drink.

This was during the first episode of Une Histoire à part, where Lazarus invited Barbara Lopez to her apartment to talk about her personal dating experiences when she came to Montreal 10 years ago.

“The podcast is almost just a bonus, it really could have been only a discussion around a drink,” Lopez said.

Lazarus welcomes each guest to her cozy apartment to share their experiences in a place of trust.

“I don’t think I would have opened up as easily and felt as comfortable if it had been in a studio in the middle of the day, you know. I felt that I had the freedom to talk about whatever I wanted,” said Lopez.

Une Histoire à part brings together different points of view, different stories, and unites the francophone community around their dating stories.For more stories, you can find the podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.


Concordia For Dummies: Graham Carr’s Apology Explained

Welcome to The Podcast. Cedric Gallant will produce and host this podcast alongside our Section Editors every week. The shows will rotate weekly to cover topics from each section of our newspaper!

This week’s show, Concordia for Dummies, was produced by Cedric Gallant, alongside our News Editor Lucas Marsh Tune in for future episodes of Concordia for Dummies, where we explore topics on students minds throughout the school year.

Graphic by James Fay

In this episode:

Lucas Marsh gives context on why Concordia’s President Graham Carr apologized for the University’s handling of the 1969 Black Student Protest. In addition to his historical explanation, Lucas interviewed Robert Wilkins, a photographer who was present when the fire broke out in the Hall building.


Northern Perspectives: Self-help in Nunavik

Welcome to The Podcast. Cedric Gallant will produce and host this podcast alongside our Section Editors every week. The shows will rotate weekly to cover topics from each section of our newspaper!

This week’s show, Northern Perspectives, was produced by Cedric Gallant. Tune in for future episodes of Northern Perspectives, where Cedric shares exclusive interviews with members of Nunavik’s remote but thriving indigenous community.

In this episode:

For our Northern Perspectives segment this week, Cedric talks with Anthony Kauki, an Inuk student who attends Dawson College in Montreal and works in his home community of Kuujjuaq during the summer.

Thanks for listening and make sure to tune in next week!


Concordia For Dummies: The Provincial Elections

Welcome to The Podcast. Cedric Gallant will produce and host this podcast alongside our Section Editors every week. The shows will rotate weekly to cover topics from each section of our newspaper!

This week’s show, Concordia for Dummies, was produced by Cedric Gallant, Gabriel Guindi, alongside our News Editors, Hannah Tiongson, Lucas Marsh, and Staff Writer Mareike Glorieux-Stryckman. Tune in for future episodes of Concordia for Dummies, where we explore topics on students minds throughout the school year.

In this episode:

Cedric Gallant covers this week’s headlines and shares interviews with First Nations leaders around Montreal reflecting on Truth and Reconciliation Day (Sept. 30).

For our Concordia for Dummies segment this week, we decided to host a discussion between a few members of our staff, all of whom came to Concordia with different backgrounds, cultures, nationhood, and native languages. Listen in for a roundtable discussion on the various Quebec party platforms as we head into our Provincial Election Day tomorrow, Oct. 2.

Thanks for listening and make sure to tune in next week!


Chatcordia : The Student Diet

Welcome to The Podcast. Cedric Gallant will produce and host this podcast alongside our Section Editors every week. The shows will rotate weekly to cover topics from each section of our newspaper!

This week’s show, Chatcordia, was produced by Cedric Gallant and Dalia Nardolillo, The Concordian’s Community Editor. Tune in for future episodes of Chatcordia, where we interview students about all things from serious to silly!

In this episode:

Cedric Gallant covers this week’s headlines and interviews Concordians at the Climate march last weekend.

For our Chatcordia segment this week, Community Editor Dalia Nardolillo asked Concordia students what they’re eating as we head into the busy (and often without lunch) days of the Fall semester.

Thanks for listening and make sure to tune in next week!

Student Life

It’s okay to be uncomfortable – confronting our complicity through The Lily Pod

A Concordia podcast that teaches us how vulnerability can connect us to ourselves and each other

Often when I think of Linneah Shanti, I think of all the things that have to do with feeling good. A feeling of good-ness that isn’t attached to something I can hold, no matter how much I adore croissants and cappuccinos. A feeling of good-ness that unwinds from budding empathy, love in bloom. A feeling of good-ness that, like her podcast, would be the worst thing to keep secret.

Originally from Ontario, Shanti is currently based in Montreal and in her third year of Interdisciplinary Studies in Sexuality at Concordia University. The two of us were introduced during

our first semester at university. A year and a half later, in January 2021, she started The Lily Pod.

The idea had been on her mind for a while before then, morphing itself from a yearning to create something special. What she ended up creating is now a space for learning and exploring, focused on the disentanglement of ideas and quenching curiosities.

When I asked Shanti to try and contain The Lily Pod to a set of defining words, she playfully replied with “Queering the existence of life.”

TC: So where did the name come from?

LS: The initial intention for the name came from my desire for this podcast to be a safe, peaceful, and loving place. I decided to take garden imagery — which for me evokes a sense of calm, safety, serenity, and welcoming. Flowers, water, and greenery have always played a big role in my feelings of belonging and safety, which I wanted the podcast to reflect.

‘Lily’ is [also] a name my partner calls me because it’s an acronym for “Linneah I Love You,” which felt really special given the loving space I wanted to create.

TC: Given that the podcast is something that is both yours and something you share — where does being vulnerable fit into this context?

LS: It fits in with how I and listeners confront our own questions, instincts, and learned ways of thinking about the world. In the process of thinking about and creating the episodes, I’m constantly confronted with how much I want to share and what I really think about something… putting my thoughts into the void can be both really scary but also really liberating.

I get a few messages a week from listeners interpreting what I’ve said in a really personal way, and I find this openness to vulnerability really special. It’s this cool cycle where this vulnerable experience for me is made public, then made personal to someone, and then reflected back to me… we’re all going through it together.

TC: You’ve explored so many topics throughout the last year, from desirability, to the male gaze, to polyamory, to the complexities of gender… Is there one topic that has stuck with you more than the rest? 

LS: I immediately gravitate towards what it means to desire and to be desired in the unique context of our own individual identities… how this intermingles with gender, sexuality, the body, perceptions. What it means to understand our positionality and using this understanding to connect us even if our experiences aren’t identical.

TC: If there’s one episode you recommend to first time listeners, which one would that be? 

LS: The polyamory one! It was the first collaborative episode and was recorded with two beautiful friends. It felt like I was doing something more than just sitting down and recording… and it reflected a lot of different themes from a queer perspective, really encapsulating what The Lily Pod is.

How to listen to The Lily Pod

My favourite place to listen to Shanti’s podcast is in my bedroom, in the midst of my process of getting ready to go somewhere. I often catch myself audibly agreeing with her, or suddenly hyper-focused on a new thought she’s helped me connect with.

Regardless of where I am when I hit play, I’ve found that by the end of each episode I’m always left feeling some type of new.

The Lily Pod is available on Spotify, Buzzsprout, and Apple Podcasts. You can find more of Linneah Shanti @linneahrae and @thelily.pod on Instagram. 

Photos by Catherine Reynolds


Getting back to the heart: CASA Cares launches debut podcast, Heart to Heart

The podcast sets out to inform and inspire the Concordia student body, one episode at a time

This January saw CASA Cares, the nonprofit subsidiary of JMSB, launch its debut podcast, Heart to Heart. With podcast consumption nearly doubling throughout the pandemic, Heart to Heart sets out to bridge the gap between Concordia students and the community left in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The interview-based podcast offers a platform where Concordia students can access advice and information on real concerns and events from experts in relevant fields. Structured on a bi-weekly release schedule, Heart to Heart will dedicate two 30-minute episodes each month to examining a particular cause or issue relating to current events.

“The podcast is basically trying to do two things,” said Divya Aery, the vice president of involvement for CASA Cares and the host of Heart to Heart. “One is trying to raise awareness on social issues and community initiatives. [The second] is trying to encourage or promote student involvement.”

This past month, Heart to Heart examined the effects that the recent lockdown measures has had on student’s mental health. Guest speakers from, the non-profit organization dedicated to youth mental health, listed a series of resources that students struggling with their mental health can access for immediate and long-term support.

Heart to Heart marks a shift in focus for the organization, which has traditionally been centred on hosting in-person fundraising events. It’s the first initiative launched by CASA Cares that does not revolve around fundraising for a particular cause or charity.

We don’t get any sort of revenue from this and it works because there is no cost either,” said Aery. “So it kind of just cancels [out] that way.”

For the non-profit organization, Heart to Heart brings the unprecedented challenge of having to operate the podcast on a zero dollar budget. All work relating to the day-to-day operation of the podcast is conducted solely by the project’s founding members. The Heart to Heart team has been using free programs such as Zoom and GarageBand to record and edit each episode, as well as recruiting guest speakers on a volunteer basis.

Despite the Heart to Heart team’s hard work, technical issues and just plain bad luck have still been major obstacles surrounding the launch.

“We had to record the first episode five times,” said Aery, when asked about Heart to Heart’s production process. “The audio kept cutting or I wasn’t happy with my questions or I thought we could have focused more on one [subject] over the other. And of course, my laptop crashed and I lost all the files, so I had to do another take.”

However, it is the dedication and commitment of the Heart to Heart founders that have let the project overcome these initial setbacks.

“There is such an impact for me personally,” said Khang Nghi Can, CASA Cares’ first-year representative and producer of Heart to Heart. “Sometimes, I’ll be editing and listening to it and I’m like, yeah, this is the thing I should do for myself, too. What if one person listens to the podcast and it makes them think differently? So if we can really help one person, like, that’s already huge.”

Heart to Heart is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and the CASA Cares website.


Logo courtesy of CASA Cares


The end of Tim & Sid

Seixeiro will be the new co-host of Breakfast Television

Television and radio host Sid Seixeiro left sports fans speechless when he announced on air on Jan. 21 that he was leaving Tim & Sid.

Alongside Tim Micallef, Seixeiro has been the co-host of Tim & Sid since 2011. The show began on The FAN 590, Sportsnet’s sister radio channel in Toronto, and was then broadcasted on Sportsnet television from 2013. On air from 5 to 7 p.m. every weekday, it’s one of the most popular sports talk shows in Canada.

Seixeiro started in sports broadcasting at age 20. He has worked in the sports industry for 20 years, most of them on Tim & Sid. His last show with Micallef will be on Feb. 26.

Despite Seixeiro leaving, the show will continue with Micallef and rotating co-hosts. Seixeiro is joining morning show Breakfast Television on Citytv as co-host. He will begin in his new duties on March 10.

“That show is very important to the fabric of the Greater Toronto Area,” Seixeiro said on Tim & Sid. “It’s a part of people’s lives. It will give me the opportunity to do some stuff I could just not do right now, stuff that interests me.”

For tens of thousands of sports fans, Tim & Sid has been their daily evening rendez-vous for years. The way this show discusses sports — sometimes in a serious way and other times with more fun and laughs — has made it entertaining since it’s beginning. Micallef and Seixeiro have always been fun to watch, as they’ve complemented each other well as co-hosts.

Seixeiro will be missed on Tim & Sid, and despite the show still going on after Feb. 26, it will be different. It will take time for long-time followers of the show to get used to the new Tim & … we shall see.


Graphic by Rose-Marie Dion

“A safe space to learn and grow:” an interview with Alina Murad of PoliticalThot

 Political podcaster Alina Murad talks social justice, Concordia, and getting involved in activism

Alina Murad is a Concordia student and the host of “PoliticalThot,” a political explainer and interview podcast with a specific focus on systemic and institutional racism and xenophobia. The first five episodes are available on Spotify, and the most recent two are in video format on Instagram. I spoke to her via video call on Friday.

What prompted you to start your own podcast? 

I’ve always been a pretty politically involved person, but one day I was in class and learned something that really pissed me off, so I went on Instagram and I took a selfie, captioned it “political thot of the day” and just, like, did a rant, and I got a bunch of responses. Positive, negative, I got some threats, it was a whole mixed bag of things. And I realized, like, I actually have a lot of thoughts here that need a platform, so why not make a podcast?

So now that you have that platform, who are you speaking to?

It’s geared toward millennials, young people, primarily, but focused on people of colour. And the reason for that is the topics my podcast deals with — racism, xenophobia — this isn’t the first time people have heard about them, but a lot of the time the way these topics are dealt with doesn’t keep in mind that they are sensitive and emotional and triggering, especially for people of colour. So I am keeping in mind that these topics are sensitive … It’s primarily a safe space to learn and grow.

I definitely get that impression listening to it — often political podcasts tend to be more news-focused, analyzing specific current events as they occur, but PoliticalThot seems broader in scope. During this time of the 24/7 news cycle, what role do you see your podcast playing in the political media landscape?

I’m actually really glad that you asked this question, and especially that you mentioned the 24/7 news cycle. While it’s so important to keep up to date with news, the way that the news is dealing with reporting, it’s often very sensationalized. And most media outlets will not show you what’s happening behind the scenes, they’re not going to say “hey, here’s the reason for all of these xenophobic behaviours we’ve been seeing.” So PoliticalThot deals with things more broadly in the hopes that it’ll help people to analyze more news, more everyday situations.

Likewise, your most recent episode was a three-parter on anti-Blackness at Concordia. Alongside checking out that episode, what do you think Concordia students should be considering about this institution as we start our classes this year?

There’s so much to consider. I find it really interesting because part of the appeal, to me at least, of Concordia was that it’s this integrated campus in the city, and the facade they give off in their advertising is “oh we want you to get involved in the community, give back, get involved with politics, get involved with social justice,” but they have a very long line of “political incidents,” if you will – good and bad – that they cover up. So the first thing I’d say is to do your research, learn the history. The computer riots, the bomb threat in the EV building three years ago that was targeting Muslim students, the sexual assaults that still haven’t been properly dealt with. And the second thing is to really actively bring pro-Blackness into our institution. Because more times than not, Canadian institutions will inherently be anti-Black. So pay attention to Black scholars, Black activists– and not just on Instagram! Read books written by Black Canadian authors like Robyn Maynard and be aware of the racism disguising itself as credibility in academia. Actively seeking pro-Black information and materials and bringing them into the institution is so important.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to take action on social justice issues but might be afraid to get started?

It’s definitely a scary thing to put yourself out there, but I think the one thing to keep in mind is that everyone is learning, and making a mistake isn’t the bad part, the bad part is not taking accountability, not fixing it, not learning from it. That’s all we can ask, right? For people to learn, to try, to grow. And if you’re gut-wrenchingly terrified of doing something, I’m sure you can find friends that also want to try and get involved — you’ll have friends who might already be involved. Just ask people. That’s honestly one of the best things about social justice work, it’s the humanity. It takes a village to do anything, and when you trust people and you put faith in people, people are good.


Graphic Courtesy of Alina Murad


Dolly, they will always love you

I feel like the world has never been more divided. You’ve got “Red” on one side, “Blue” on the other and no one in the middle.

We are no longer listening to each other. We aren’t engaging with the opposition and everyone seems like, well, a politician. When was the last time you saw two people with completely opposing political views standing next to each other peacefully?

Oh, that’s right—at a Dolly Parton concert. 

A country music icon, Parton has managed to navigate through the celebrity world as an A-list singer/songwriter, without having a political opinion. This is truly unheard of.

This isn’t to say that Parton doesn’t have opinions. She has helped lead a working class women’s movement, with her acting, singing and songwriting of the hit 1980’s movie 9 To 5. This movie, starring Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin as well as Parton herself, focused on hardworking women wanting to be treated better in the workplace. This came at a time when women were extremely frustrated with their lack of rights. The theme song became an anthem for gender equality.

When this movie was readapted to Broadway, she told the red carpet in London, “It’s as relevant now as it was before, and with the #metoo movement this is a good time for it.”

She stands up for women, but never really calls herself a feminist. She is constantly crediting the men in her life, and has the motto that everyone should be treated equally.

Parton’s lack of political position comes at a very interesting time for the world. We are constantly trying to find public figures to lead us. We must like musicians that stand for a good cause, support comedians that are breaking barriers and make sure that like-minded people are the only ones allowed in our echochamber. Parton takes this concept and destroys it. Her diverse fans love her work, her brand and most of all, her. Most are not worried about what she stands for.

She explained to Jad Abumrad in his Podcast Dolly Parton’s America that it’s too much pressure to have a political opinion.

I hope I don’t let people down,” Parton told Abumrad. “They’ve put me up on this pedestal, I hope they don’t knock me off of it.”

Parton has been frustrated in the past with interviewers and the media constantly asking her about her political opinions. In 2017, when Trump had been in office for just under a year, Parton, Fonda and Tomlin all presented an award at the Emmys. The other women, being the powerful activists they are, made a pointed statement directed at the President. Dolly was expected to follow suit, but instead, she decided to make a boob joke.

“I didn’t like it,” Parton told Abumrad. “I had already told Jane and Lili that I wasn’t going to get into the politics of anything. I don’t do politics. I have too many fans on both sides of the fence.”

Whether or not you agree with Parton’s apolitical nature, it works for her. She is an incredible business woman and knows how to work the system. We cannot deny that her neutrality has helped her make a buck. By staying out of political discussions and navigating show business, she has unified two worlds in a way that we haven’t seen before.

There truly is no one like her. 


Graphic by @sundaeghost

Student Life

Laughing at myself with strangers

One Concordian’s experience participating in Grownups Read Things They Wrote as Kids

Grownups Read Things They Wrote as Kids (GRTTWaK) hosted their fifth Montreal show on Nov. 20 at La Sala Rossa.

On an elevated stage, with bright lights making it virtually impossible to see the audience before me, I shared childhood writings, from elementary school assignments to angsty teenage diary entries, for a night of comedy and emotion.

Katerina Gang reading things she wrote as a kid. Photo by Jenna Misener

GRTTWaK is a travelling, open-mic show hosted by Dan Misener. Misener and his wife, Jenna Misener, have traveled across Canada since 2007, bringing the show to Canadian communities big and small, where locals sign up to read their childhood writing. Misener hosts about 30 shows per year.

The Miseners came up with the concept in 2006, after returning home for the holidays. “We rummaged through a bunch of old boxes that my wife had stored at her parents house. In one of those boxes was her diary from when she was 13 years old,” said Misener.

“We spent a lot of that Christmas reading this thing out loud to each other and laughing and crying, and it was just this lovely perspective that I had never seen before in my wife,” said Misener. “It struck us that lots of people probably have this kind of material.”

Misener records each reading for the show’s eponymous podcast, which is available online. A few readings from each show make it onto the podcast, which is released every second Monday.

The podcast started in 2008, and has evolved as more voices participate—it is downloaded about 250,000 times a month. “Quite frequently, I get notes from listeners who heard a reading on the podcast that really resonated with them and really spoke to their experience,” said Misener. “And that’s really gratifying.”

Each show opens with Misener reading his own childhood writings. “Nobody wants to go first, so I always go first,” said Misener, who shared an elementary school journal entry about “root bear flats” during the latest show.

As a long-time fan of the podcast and the concept, I decided to share my own writing at the latest event on Nov. 20.

After attending a GRTTWaK event in January 2016, I went home and searched through my old writing. I spent hours reading and laughing at old poems, assignments and diary entries. I put some pieces aside in anticipation of GRTTWaK’s next event.

Selecting writings really allowed me to reflect on how I’ve changed since my pre-teen years. Some of the stuff I found was funny and light-hearted, but some of it was downright embarrassing. I knew I wanted to share it, but I initially felt very unsure.

“I think some people are apprehensive about the idea of sharing personal or private stuff that they’re maybe not super proud of—the parts of themselves that they like to keep hidden or the parts of themselves that aren’t on public display,” said Misener. “But I think there’s a lot of power in that.”

I shared one poem I wrote when I was 10, which featured lines like “I worry what the world will become with racism and terrorism” and “I cry at the knowledge of death.” I found it quite dramatic and funny for a 10-year-old. I also shared a diary entry I wrote when I was 12 about lost love, being “emo” and President George W. Bush.

“It can be really kind of scary,” said Misener. “We’re asking people to get up on stage and be open and honest and vulnerable in front of a crowd full of people that they don’t know.”

Getting up on that stage was an amazing feeling in that, once I started reading, I wasn’t nervous at all. I was shocked at how easy it was to open up to a group of strangers. With each line or phrase, I could feel the warmth emanating from the crowd. It was really refreshing, and almost therapeutic, to laugh at myself with strangers.

Another participant, Kristen Witczak, read several journal entries about Shakespeare and the 1994 referendum from her elementary school journal. “When I stumbled on my grade five English journals, I just couldn’t stop laughing and I thought, ‘This is kind of unique,’” said Witczak.

“Reading to the audience was a blast. It was a hugely supportive crowd and, as soon as they started laughing, I felt completely relaxed and just enjoyed the moment,” said Witczak. “I’ve been to a GRTTWaK event before and I think they’re a fantastic evening spent with a warm, kind community of strangers.”

“Our show is a show where the audience is already on your side,” said Misener. “When people get up on stage and they see the warmth in the room and they see the authenticity of the readers who share their writing, they warm up to the idea a little bit.”

Going forward, Misener hopes to incorporate a visual element to the show and create a web series to accompany the podcast. There’s no end in sight for the show, as Misener said he’s going to keep doing it so long as people are willing to share.

Student Life

Podcasts affecting the airwaves of radio

When MTV first played “Video Killed the Radio Star” in the early ‘80s, no one knew how watching music videos would change the way we listen to music.

Fast forward to 2004 when former MTV VJ Adam Curry figured out a way to download online audio broadcasts to his music player for his listening pleasure. No one knew his personal project would change the way we listen to the radio.

In a wired age, “radio” shows can now be downloaded from the Internet. These shows are called podcasts. These little portable nuggets of audio are a blend of two words – the Apple iPod music player and the term “broadcasting.” A podcast’s length may be longer than your average MP3 track but shorter than your downloadable audiobook.

You can find a podcast for almost any subject matter, any length, in any language. They can be repeats from a live television or radio broadcast, a documentary, a verbal show, even a music program. Unlike in broadcast, the episodes can be sporadic, and can vary on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Graphic by Jenny Kwan

Podcasts have been an essential ingredient in enriching our online experience of consuming and creating original content—from watching videos, to reading blogs and interacting with other people through social media. According to Paul Aflalo, there is a lot of great local material just waiting to be discovered.

Aflalo is one of the co-founders of No More Radio (NMR), a Montreal-based podcast network. The network began its operations in 2011 after finding out that its former show on CJLO, called “Edge of the City,” was gaining more online followers than its radio audience.

As a substantial growth in audience listenership developed, more original shows were added, ranging on various subject matters: arts, city life, local music and storytelling.

In a phone interview with Aflalo, he explained that the transition from being in radio to being online was not too difficult.

“The difference is that we miss CJLO, it was nice to have a studio set-up for us…but we also wanted to grow beyond that,” he said.

Since podcasts are not broadcasted live—they are recorded, edited and distributed on various platforms—he explains that there is more opportunity to fix any rough patches in the production process.

 Another advantage to producing them is the creative freedom to air unique programs.

“We don’t have commercial breaks, nor advertisers where we have to appeal to them every single time. We work based on the content and creativity that drives us,” he said.

It’s a win-win situation for a listener who can be really picky about what they want to listen to.

He explains that, “It’s just not about how technology is changing, but it’s about how you can create better things.”

As the popularity of podcasts continues to grow, the question remains on whether it’s here to stay.

“So [where will we be] in ten years from now? I have no idea. In five years from now, I have no idea,” he said.

Five podcasts you should check out

Podcasts may be mistakenly known as shows that you can simply download and sync to your iPod or iPhone. However, getting them on your mobile device or computer has now become as easy as ever.

Since online streaming has become the norm, you can find them easily on the web on sites such as TuneIn Radio or Podomatic. If you’re more of a road warrior, you can download a free smartphone app such as Podkicker (Android), the stock Podcasts app (iPhone) or specialty apps such as Mixcloud and Soundcloud to check out a catalog of shows to listen to. The best part is that it is absolutely free!

And while you’re searching, here’s some interesting picks that you should check out.


1) Welcome to Night Vale. Commonplace Books (Comedy/Music)


With new episodes twice a month in 30-minute segments, WTNV talks about oddities and strange sightings of the fictional dark desert town of Night Vale, through the voice of community radio host Cecil Baldwin. It’s part-storytelling, part-commentary, part-music. The series has acquired a huge fan following over this past summer because of its creepily unique charm. Don’t dare listen to it while you’re out late at night. Just saying.


2) Snap Judgment. NPR (Spoken Word/Music)


With new hour-long shows released on a weekly basis plus hundreds of episodes under its belt, Snap Judgment reinvents storytelling in a very creative way by blending together music, creativity and authenticity, while having fun at it. Host Glynn Washington weaves together and navigates you around several real-life stories focusing on a central theme.


3) 99% Invisible. Public Radio Exchange (Storytelling/Design)


This podcast talks about design in all of its aspects and how it affects our lives in ways we don’t even realize. On an almost weekly basis, host Roman Mars presents each story with his soothing voice and welcoming approach to design that encourages you to engage, learn and interact with it. The best part is that each episode is not overwhelming to listen to—with shows that range from five to 20 minutes each.


4) Daybreak Montreal Podcast. CBC Radio (News/Information)


Released on a daily basis all-year round, this podcast is an extension of CBC Montreal’s morning radio program Daybreak, hosted by Mike Finnerty. Just imagine yourself lounging at the coffee shop with the hosts talking about what happened in the day’s news, or how each columnists’ segment went on air; while listening to stories and interviews that aired on the live show. It’s a great listen if you’re travelling far away and need your local fix.


5) Wait, wait…Don’t Tell Me! NPR (News/Game/Comedy)


This show is a successful cross-section of news, comedy and gaming done well. It’s also perhaps one of the few successful news quiz programs on radio today. “Wait Wait!” is hosted by Peter Sagal, and legendary Public radio newscaster Carl Kasell. Together they test three comedians on their familiarity with the week’s news. It’s a great panacea whether you need to catch up on news you’ve missed, or when you need a good laugh after hearing of all the bad news.


Exit mobile version