is creating Podcast Criticism at its finest

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Joy, harmony with the universe, a good feeling that follows you through the day. If Undivided.Space was worth your time today, then let us know. We won't bug you, or add you to a mailing list, or do anything else that corrupts the idea that you like what you read and think its worth supporting. 

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Every Tuesday, Undivided.Space listens to every new to the charts podcast. Usually, there are about 25, so this reward is limited. If you want to be public about your support, the following line will be added to a 100-word podcast post: "This post brought to you by _______ _________. " Short and sweet. 

200 Pods for $10!

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Every Monday, Undivided.Space publishes a list of the top 200 podcasts of the week. It's a great discovery tool, and that makes it a great space for your personal recommendations: "This week, [Your Name] recommends [Name of Podcast] ranked [this week's ranking]." 




I am Jason Mahanes, a blogger with a serious addiction to podcasting. I started Undivided.Space in April 2017 because no one was writing about podcasting from the perspective that podcasting is the most interesting development in media in our lifetimes. The form deserves a serious critic, a critic who loves the medium and takes it personally when podcasts aren't as good as they could be. Undivided.Space is my dream. I want it to be the Rolling Stone of podcasting. 

I have been fighting my writing gene my entire life. The first creative thing I ever did was publish a poem in my elementary school's bulletin. Back then I wanted to be an architect. Throughout middle and high school, fiction was my thing, but I was always enrolled in STEM. I thought I would be a physicist. I went to college as a Physics major and came out as a fine artist (How's that for an overcorrection!). I still went for the minor in writing, but this time it was rhetoric. I thought maybe I could be an art critic if the public failed to be enthralled by my pretentious photographs and pedantic conceptual projects. By the end of grad school, I was a regular contributor to an underground zine in Los Angeles and was plotting the overthrow of publishing with a paradigm shifting non-profit press... Of course, that stuff didn't really pay much, so I taught, and I did some graphic design when I could pick up the work, and that stuff was working out in a way that only ever let me write under a pseudonym. The years rolled on and my life got more and more conservative. Writing was still there, but it was always second to my daily efforts, sometimes only a private thing I did in the middle of the night. The idea for Undivided.Space has been with me for a long time. In April 2017, I decided it needed to come first. 

Undivided.Space is new, but it works.

Every Monday I publish podcast charts. Charts that define the landscape in the moment and become the data for deep insight over time. What is the full lifecycle of a hit like S-Town? What is more viable long-term: a True Crime series with high production values or a lone wolf talking into the mic in his garage? Journalist or performer? Freeform and conversational or scripted and polished? Everyone has opinions, Undivided.Space wants to answer these questions longitudinally, with data.

Every Tuesday I listen to every podcast that is new in the charts. That means that there is a real time archive building week by week in perpetuity. That also means I have listened to episodes of over 350 different titles in the last few months. To cover a field you have to know it, and I know podcasts. Every pod has a ~100 word impression attached to it. The goal is to provide a discovery mechanism to new listeners, and to make sure that someone objective is producing opinion about every podcast on the charts, not just the flavor of the minute or the major producers, who can largely take care of themselves in the mainstream media. 

Between Wednesday and Friday, I do deeper dives with a weekly feature article. This generally means listening to an entire season of a podcast, as I did with S-Town and Up and Vanished. Sometimes it is highlighting a new podcast that is worthy of a bigger audience and more than 100 words of attention. Shows like Nancy and Convicted fill this bill. In the near future it will mean making sense of the sub-genres. What is the best daily news information pod? What about news commentary; who is in each echo chamber, and is anyone effectively breaking free of this destructive-to-discourse trend? Feature articles take a lot of work, but it is work that needs to be done. 

In my free time, I'm listening. I consume more than 80 hours of podcasts a week. That means that I am listening right now, while writing this, and listening while walking my pug puppy, and basically every other moment when I can squeeze a meaningful chunk into my day. 

Undivided.Space is my dream, but my dream is bigger than the hours in my day. That's where you come in. 

Every cell in my independence-loving, fourth-estate-protecting, don't-trust-the-man-whose-table-is-being-set-by-a-fat-cat body does not want to support myself by selling your eyes to advertisers. Ads make the web a shitty place. Google is the enemy of everything I like about the internet. I will starve before you see a banner ad on my site. Help me fight the good fight. 

By supporting Undivided.Space, you will help me:
  • Dedicate myself full time to listening and writing. I want to be the Roger Ebert of Podcasting. 
  • Bring the site into the 21st century. Yes, I am aware that a free Wordpress theme, and v1.0 image management is archaic, but at this moment it is free and light. I would love to spend some money to have the site in my head appear on your screen, regardless of its size, beautifully. 
  • Promote engagement. An alarming amount of my traffic comes in through Facebook and Twitter, and promoting engagement through those tools is like wrestling a leviathan. They live and die by time on site, and pulling eyeballs to Undivided.Space could easily be a full time job. 
  • Pay myself something someday. I realize that the stars have aligned to allow me to get Undivided.Space off the ground, but celestial events are transitory. I like to eat food that doesn't come with a King or a clown on it, and I like to sleep in a warm bed, and I would love to avoid dirty looks from friends and family as I pour every moment into Undivided.Space. Economic incentives are powerful, and real costs are unavoidable. 
  • Grow. I am not a one man band. The first voices other than mine to write under the Undivided.Space banner will likely be freelance. I want to pay them well. I have sold writing a few times in my life, and the rates for web content are sweatshop low. Undivided.Space will never leave an author poorer for having published with us. 

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$5000/month lets me breathe easier while building my dream. It covers all my currently anticipated costs and allows me to focus on all the details that might otherwise get lost in the daily grind. 
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