What is a Modcast?
You won’t find “modcast” in Merriam-Webster, the Oxford English Dictionary, Funk and Wagnalls, Rogets, Elements of Style (4th Edition), The Chicago Handbook of Style, Wikipedia, the Urban Dictionary, or any authoritative or quasi-authoritative gatekeeper of the English language. At least not yet.
But we expect that you will in the very near future, and when you do, we want you to know that you saw it here first.
A modcast is a word we coined for a cross between a podcast and a monologue.
Why, you ask, do we need a new word, why not just call it a “short podcast?” Well, a short podcast can be anything other than a long podcast, or a medium-length podcast. But as there’s no established time that defines a long or medium-length podcast, that would just be confusing. Is a short podcast 15 minutes? Five minutes? Less? Sort of like a tik-tok video, but without video?
As marketers, we are sometimes guilty of making up words as a function of branding, to differentiate. Often, it just adds to all the noise, and we wind up defeating the purpose. But we believe we’re on firm ground with modcast – it’s descriptive, non-ambiguous, and pardon us if this sounds a bit self-congratulatory, but it just sounds cool!
Modcast as in Monologue
In addition to being defined by its shorter length, a modcast is a monologue. This isn’t to be confused with a podcast that features a single host who talks, advises, rants, or barks at the moon for 20 to 180 minutes. A modcast, just as a typical monologue, can go for anywhere from 60 seconds to, say, five minutes (think of a standard turn at an open mic). It’s not limited to subject matter or genre, it can be serious or funny. The beauty of a modcast is that you don’t have to wait 25+ minutes to decide whether it’s funny or if it will eventually get interesting…you know it almost immediately!
Two things I’d like to note:
- Modcast is not a new word. It’s been previously used in reference to a “moderated” podcast. So I suppose by virtue of seniority, ours is technically a secondary usage, though that is almost certain to change quickly as we expect the form we’re describing to fast become a popular form of communications.
- In coining modcast, we briefly entertained “podologue,” though opted for the former because it’s shorter, more easily rolls off the tongue and because podologue is French for podiatrist. The last thing we’d want is for French speakers to hear the word podologue and think it has anything to do with their feet, as in what they use to move in the other direction.
WorldatWork’s NSFW Modcast: a Prime Modcast Example
As the host and chief writer of WorldatWork’s NSFW Podcast, it’s probably bad form to cite it as the Platonic ideal of the modcast. I hasten to state that it is not the Platonic ideal, I would never make such a grand claim, that’s ridiculous. But since I don’t know of any pods where the host engages in a short monologue and calls itself a modcast, I couldn’t in good conscience use any of them as an example of the form (certainly not without their formal consent). With these considerations and caveats, the NSFW Podcast is as good an example as any. So, without futher ado, one of the most recent NSFW modcasts: Has it ever occurred to you that maybe you ARE an imposter?