Humans love listening to things. It is one of the most common past times. Whether it is listening to music, audiobook, or podcast, we'll do it to relax. There is just something in the activity that soothes our nerves.
In the past, this form of entertainment could only come from the radio. But thanks to the internet and streaming websites, they are now available anywhere we go.
Social media platform and music-streaming giant SoundCloud is a prime example. Not only does it let people listen, but it also helps them be content creators. While it focuses more on music, it also lets users upload podcasts.
Aside from listening, we humans love to converse and be in the know. Podcasts center around these. They are episodic series of spoken word digital audio files where the hosts discuss a particular topic or current event.
Some podcasts are carefully scripted, while others are entirely improvised. Either way, podcasts are often informative. They allow listeners to learn about the issue and hear someone's views about it. Then, they can differentiate and contemplate. Through listening to podcasts, people can have a better understanding of things and of each other.
Aside from music artists, both aspiring and superstars, SoundCloud also caters to podcasters. Admittedly, podcasts only make up a small percentage of the content on the platform. That said, it is unlikely that SoundCloud will implement improved features that will benefit podcasters. For instance, SoundCloud Premier – the platform's monetization service- does not include podcasts to content that users can monetize.
Still, something good comes out of uploading podcasts on the platform. First and foremost, SoundCloud is an audio platform and social media network combined. That means everyone on the site can like, comment, and share the platform. The comment section helps podcasters gather feedback from their listeners. That way, they can know what their fans liked and disliked about the episode. Furthermore, it can act as an “extension” of the podcast where the host can talk to the listeners. Then, of course, the share button helps increase the podcast's visibility.
Andy Ngo is one famous person who podcasts on SoundCloud. He is an American conservative journalist, author, and social media personality. Also, Ngo is the editor-at-large of The Post Millennial, a Canadian conservative news website.
Ngo is known for covering Antifa violence. His book “Unmasked: Inside Antifa's Radical Plan to Destroy Democracy” was on a New York Times best-seller list. It has also ranked No. 1 on Amazon for U.S. politics books.
Likewise, his podcast titled “Things You Should Ngo” tackles controversial topics. Every episode, Ngo interviews renowned academics and thinkers with controversial ideas. These people come from what he refers to as the “intellectual dark web.”
In the first episode of Ngo's podcast, posted in October 2018, he interviewed Dr. Elham Manea, an associate professor at the Political Science Institute at the University of Zurich. They discussed the “banality” of radical Islam.
In another episode, Ngo spoke with Carl Benjamin, also known by his YouTube alias, “Sargon of Akkad.” They talked about Benjamin's belief as a critic of feminism.
Then, the latest episode was posted in March last year. It featured Imam Tawhidi, and they discussed the parallel between violent Islamic extremists and members of Antifa.
Because of the nature of his work, Ngo has found himself numerous times in the middle of controversies. His credibility and objectivity as a journalist have always been extensively criticized. Now, his podcast became a hot topic even though its last episode was uploaded more than a year ago. Until recently, significant real growth of SoundCloud Plays was seen on his podcast, which he must have enjoyed.
On June 28, Andy Ngo became the latest conservative voice silenced by Big Tech. He said in his tweet that SoundCloud has banned “Things You Should Ngo” permanently from the platform.
His podcast violated SoundCloud's terms and services, according to an email. That was the reason for its removal. However, Ngo says SoundCloud did not name the offending content.
The terms and conditions prevent users from posting any abusive, libelous, defamatory, pornographic, or obscene content. In no way should they promote or incite violence to violence, terrorism, and illegal acts. Furthermore, the content should not contain hate speech against race, ethnicity, cultural identity, religious belief, disability, gender, identity, or sexual orientation.
It also stated that violation of these terms would result in all accounts, tracks, and followers being banned from returning to the site.
Andy Ngo asks which of these did his podcast break. “How can a legitimate business accuse a client of such egregious crimes without even pointing to the offending content?” he asks. Ngo also adds that SoundCloud did not give him an opportunity to ask for more information. In an email he provided, he said SoundCloud also neglected a chance of appeal for the permanent ban. If anything, that was an implication that the decision was final.
“Big Tech is not nonpartisan nor neutral,” says Ngo. But, paying clients like him should know which of their content is so outrageous that it merits a permanent suspension, he insists.
Two days after the issued ban, SoundCloud brought “Things You Should Ngo” back to the platform.
In an apology, it said they had conducted additional reviews of Andy Ngo's content. There, they found out that it only dealt with sensitive topics. But, it did not “criticize, or demean any individual or group of individuals based on their belonging to a protected group.”
Thereafter, the platform fully restored the account and made it available again for immediate use. “Reviewing reported content is not an automated process,” the statement continues. “So this takes time, and unfortunately, mistakes can happen.”
But the damage has been done. Andy Ngo said in a statement that he told SoundCloud he would be canceling his paid subscription. Furthermore, he would be taking all his content off their platform.
Podcast hosts are already dubious about putting their content on SoundCloud due to a lack of support. With this issue, it would not be surprising if they abandon the thought completely.
Date: July 28, 2021 / Categories: New Stuff, / Author: Joy P
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