For all the hype and venture capital flowing around podcasting these days, it’s remarkable how rigid the format remains. Our consumption of spoken-word audio still isn’t personalized to our interests, and, worse, the common 60-minute episode doesn’t work for a half-hour commute or when we’re getting ready in the morning.
60dB wants to change all of that. Founded by former NPR “Marketplace” reporter Steve Henn and Netflix veterans John Ciancutti and Steve McLendon, the forthcoming platform will focus on short-form audio stories that are targeted to listeners based on their interests (undoubtedly aided by experience in recommendation algorithms that comes from years of working at Netflix). The startup—incorporated as Tiny Garage Labs—will partner with independent podcast producers and traditional journalists alike to create short (5-10 minutes) stories on a wide range of topics.