TWiT Update

Don’t bug me. Dane has the day off and I’ve got to get TWiT 113 and The Tech Guy 388 out the door before I go home. Oh yeah, and Munchcast 7! It’s been a long time since I had to burn the midnight oil editing TWiT. It really makes me appreciate Dane’s help, and the TWiT donors that made Dane’s salary possible!
Amber was back tonight and we recorded a new net@nite. There were some technical issues during recording so the Talkshoe version won’t sound so hot for the first 15-20 minutes. The podcast will be fine – that comes out on TWiT.tv Tuesday.

gone-fishin.jpgAfter recording, Amber and I talked about our grueling schedules. She pointed out that most TV shows don’t go continuously. They’ll end their seasons, take some time off to refresh, then come back for a new season. She suggested that maybe we should do that with netcasts, too.

I certainly would welcome some time off – but the idea of going into hiatus with our shows scares me, too. I think most people want and expect the show to be there every week. It’s part of their routine. I’d be afraid that people would forget us if we took a month or so off every year (not all at once mind you, but one netcast at any given time). As listeners what do you think?

146 Replies to “TWiT Update”

  1. Leo…If I may…It’s a PODCAST…If your listeners can’t deal with you taking a vacation, that says more about them than it does about you…When ever I get to feeling that I am so important I remember an episode of Star Trek TNG (we are geeks in here…aren’t we?) with a memorable exchange between Picard and Q:
    “Q, even if you have been able to bring me back to the past somehow, surely you must realize that any alteration in this timeline will have a profound impact on the future.”
    “Please! Spare me your egotistical musings on your pivotal role in history. Nothing you do here will cause the Federation to collapse or galaxies to explode. To be blunt, you’re not that important.”
    – Picard and Q
    The world will go on, if you take a break (and you need to)…Frankly Leo…Podcasts are not that important…But your sanity and your family are…
    Now go away! 😉

  2. I am not so sure about the “season” idea. TV usually has reruns or other shows to fill in. I do not think that would work with Podcasts. But I do understand taking some time off. I would suggest having a guest host for those shows during that time. It is not easy. But no one should have an expectation to have it out every week forever. As long as you communicate what you are doing so the listener knows and is not surprised should be enough.

  3. Nobody wants to hear (or see) a burnt-out tech guru, Leo. Do what it takes to ease your load. Time off or delegation seem to be the options available.

  4. I don’t think you have to worry about people forgetting about you. 🙂 A break is good for everyone, time to rest and recharge – you deserve it! Keep up the good work, but don’t burn yourself out!

  5. Leo – I would rather have something to look forward to several weeks away than nothing. I do understand that you would have some fallout. I like the suggestion of several here that you should get some guest hosts more often to give you a break. Get PixelCorps to get you some technical help uploading podcasts.

  6. I guess I don’t know. I can see it from a few different directions – you had been doing “podcast catchup” weeks when you would skip a week on purpose. That was fine. Taking a month or so off of the netcast would be fine, too. I think even taking a month off just for you would be fine, too, although it may be difficult to get it started back up.

  7. Leo, Is it possible to get a fill-in on each show, taking over for how ever long you want the off season to be? Maybe keeping on a portion of the original crew from each show for consistency, with the occasional call in from Leo? Just a thought.
    Jered

  8. As a long time listener I would not mind if some of the netcasts took a break. Maybe you could roll some “best of” stuff during that period. Just roll out some interviews from the past. That way people do not forget about you.
    You and all of the other hosts deserve a break once in a while.

  9. I would be irritated by it, but if that’s what you guys decide to do I’ll keep listening. It is very nice to have TWiT waiting there for me every week and things tend to feel a little off when it’s not there, but it wouldn’t be the end of civilization if you guys decided to take some time off. Just don’t start taking too much time off.

  10. Leo, I’m a big fan. Fresh out of college, I work in a cubicle. I listen to MBW, Twit, SN, Giz, & n@n. It gets me through the day/week… life? Well, the mornings certainly.
    You totally deserve a holiday. It might take a creative solution. Find a way to delegate work such that there is still content flowing. You deserve a hiatus. And recharging your batteries will only give you more to pour back into the network.
    We won’t forget about you.

  11. I have been listening since the first net casts, and think you do deserve a break, a break is better than a burn out, I think your listeners will support you through a break. But I also understand your concern, out of sight out of mind. My only suggestion dont go the route of a guest host.

  12. You certainly deserve a break. Doing as many netcasts as you do would drive any normal person over the edge.
    However, you are also correct in that I would go stir crazy if I didn’t have at least one or two to listen to each week.
    Maybe do like Scott did/does with the iLifeZone and put out an episode every 10 days, or even two weeks instead of every week.
    That way you could either stagger the recordings so that there is less to do each week, or sync them and have one week off and one week working.
    I don’t know if I could go a whole month without any TWiT casts. I would have to go back to audiobooks or something. Yeech! 😉

  13. As a former podcaster, once you take hiatus it’s nearly impossible to get back into the routine of doing the show.

  14. I agree with Zac. Take the time off and put together a few ‘best of’ shows to use for the down time.
    Bruce.

  15. Like Leo said he would not put all shows on hiatus at the same time, and as most probably listen to more than one show from the TWiT network, there would still be something left to enjoy.
    Also for some of the shows which do not depend on being released right after recording (TWiT or MacBreak Weekly) like Security Now or Munchcast, You could pre-produce some filler episodes to be released while You and Your co-hosts take that much deserved break.
    I do have to disagree with the idea of seasons however, as those seem to apply mostly to TV shows, but not to radio or internet variations. And yes, even though the TWiT network is one of the most prominent and best known podcast networks out there, You as it’s chief (TWiT) taking a break for too long will make people go and search for alternatives elsewhere. Probably not me, mind You, but still…
    I do of course not know how sponsors would react to such a decision, but then again I also do not know what kind of deals You have with them anyway.
    What I do know is this – there’s basically nothing more entertaining that You, Leo, at Your best, and if You feel like You are simply putting too much stress on Yourself, spreading Yourself too thin, than by all means take the time You need to recharge!
    Greetings from Old World ™!

  16. Why not scale your netcasts back to every other week permanently instead of taking a set block of weeks off every year? That would cut your work load in half every week. If something were to happen that you wanted to cover or you just felt like doing an extra episode of *insert netcast here* you could always just record/release an extra one as an update/surprise.

  17. I’m a regular podcast listener and would have no problem with breaks. I would appreciate some forewarning tho as to when the breaks start and end.
    Been following you since the Kate & Leo days 🙂

  18. I support you taking a break from netcasting. There’s every chance that you having a break would result in even better quality when you return feeling refreshed.
    Plus, scarcity breeds demand; people will appreciate what they have when you’re gone!
    Finally, you taking a break would give me a chance to catch up on the pile of books I have gathering dust!

  19. I’ve been listening to you on one netcast or another since the summer of 2005. It never occurred to me that you would *need* some time off!
    Now that I think about it though, all of the TWiT netcasters should be entitled to a break every now and then.
    As much as regular netcasts are a part of my routine, an announced, scheduled break would be easy to get used to. People mostly complain when there isn’t a show they expected to show up in iTunes.
    So, I say setup a schedule for time off and let us all know and I won’t mind a bit. I feel a bit like the boss who doesn’t know you need a vacation. This topic should have come up earlier! TWiT netcasters are a hard working bunch. Keep up the good work.

  20. Most TV dramas have hiatus, but most news/talk-shows do not.
    You could always pull a Regis – as on “Live with Regis and Kelly” – and have Alec Baldwin or Howie Mandel sit in for you for a couple of weeks. Figuratively speaking, of course.

  21. If anyone deserves a break its you Leo, but how about keeping the mainline netcasts going (TWIT/SN) and taking the rest off for your holiday. You could get someone we know already to host them (Ala Scott Bourne, MBW), and for SN all we need is Steve, you could pretty much just use a recording of your 10 most common phrases 😉

  22. I think of your TWIT shows as more of the tech version of NBC’s “Meet the Press” (but a heck of a lot more entertaining!).
    When the host wants a vacation, the show goes on – too much happening for the show to not air during a particular week.
    Hence, I think you could rotate hosts and take 2 weeks off every now and then, and maybe even a month once a year.
    The shows wouldn’t be as good without you on them, but at least they would air for your fans to stay up to speed on the latest news!

  23. Leo,
    I think it is a great idea. I’ve been listening/watching you for years and I think I can tell when you are getting a little tired (remember the “ahhh, everything sucks” rant? I would like to see you after a break. I think it would really freshen things up. My suggestion would be to put out a “new” feeds even when you are away. Call then what they are “re-runs” or “best of’s”. Just have a blurb at the beginning of the feed that says this is a re-run or whatever. I think a lot of people would still like to tune in at the “usual” time and at least have something to listen to.

  24. I was thinking the same thing. The listneners can use a break too. This way we’ll look forward to your return. Although it’s harder for a news-based show to take a break… I for one will be waiting for your return. Or you could try guest hosts/co-hosts?

  25. I would rather see you take a periodic break than have you break down. Spend some more time with your son. Don’t drive him to the point where he is a caller on one of your shows.
    Allow the listeners to put together a best of. Turn over a few shows to Andy Inhatko as host. Dane can handle the shows, you get away. we would miss you, but you are still the brand. Even Johnny Carson got away a little bit. Then again, Johnny had a few wives.

  26. I have a raft of podcasts lined up in iTunes. My favorites are the ones that come out on a regular, more-or-less predictable schedule. Frequency isn’t as important to me.
    “Season breaks” seem a bad idea, though. A couple of podcasts in my list have gone dark for a couple of months for various reasons, and I have gotten out of the habit. It costs me nothing to have dormant podcasts on my subscription list, but if I ever need to rebuild it dormant podcasts may not make the cut.
    Do “MacBreak Bi-weekly” if you want. Take an occasional week off if you need. But a month’s break really is too long.

  27. We all need a little time off now and again, so I think most people would understand a brief break now and again. Of course, audio podcasts are more like radio than TV, so why not do what KFI does when Bill Handel goes on vacation and have a few substitute hosts take over, either regulars we already know or fresh voices to give a fresh perspective. That way you get a break and the show still goes on. 🙂

  28. Take a break Leo … you are on my rss tracker so I’ll know when you return. Good fishing!
    Oh, and take some nice pics with that new camera.

  29. I think you should take a break if you want. I doubt people will forget about you, the season return will still show up in their podcast program.

  30. Everyone deserves some time off, Leo, including you. If you do decide to take time, we’ll be right here waiting as usual for new podcasts. 🙂

  31. Leo,
    I’ve been a day 1 listener of TWiT(ROTSS) and think you need a break. My fav shows are TWiT, MBW, SN, WW, and Tech Guy. I think if you had each show go on a roving “month of”…..it would be ideal.
    MBW on hiatus for july, twit in august, ww in sept, etc etc….I could live w/ that and it would give you a break from certain shows for a while…although I think Steve Gibson might take issue w/ taking a break from SN…Ha!

  32. Feelin’ the need for a break!
    While it would suck to miss any of the TWiT shows, I think a week or 2 of best-of’s or repeats of past episodes wouldn’t be so bad either.
    Although I’m sure Steve would hit up Starbucks for a marathon session of Security Now so that didn’t happen 😉

  33. Leo, I think the idea of taking a month off sounds like a wonderful thing for you, and I could get to reading things again (I have a year or two of PC Mag waiting for me), check out other podcasts in the interim time, kind of “clean my pallet” so that it’s refreshing to hear your perspectives on things again. Perhaps a few Best-of’s maybe, but it doesn’t matter. Maybe you could do it while you’re in Egypt.

  34. I wouldn’t mind if you took a month off. Hak5 does it every summer and it seems to work out fine. I sometimes find myself overwhelmed with podcasts and end up needing to skip weeks, so a month off would be welcomed.

  35. People don’t really mind if you take a break if they know it is coming.
    One of the best examples of this in my subscription list is Lug Radio. They break their show into “seasons”, which end with their Lug Radio Live conference/meetup. They then take a month or two off before starting up again, all refreshed.
    Yes, we miss the show when it’s not on. But, we know that it will be back after the hosts have had time off.
    It all comes down to expectations. And if anyone deserves a break it is you!

  36. Leo, you deserve a break. Never let us fans prevent you from taking a break. I am sure all of us can find something to do while you take a 2 week or gasp month break. There are plenty of things to do this fall, new TV shows, College and NFL football, Baseball playoffs and oh ya my own podcast. Leo TAKE A BREAK, you deserve it. You know absence makes the heart grow fonder.

  37. Anyone who listens to one of your netcasts more than once knows it’s not a fly-by-night operation. I don’t think anyone would get the impression that you are “pod fading” any particular show.
    Besides, if you go with the idea of seasons, you could make the listeners aware if the episode they are listening to is a season finale.

  38. I’m currently watching my hubby burn out cuz of his programming/cell company job and it’s kinda scary. In that light, I’d say for-sure, breaks would be good, if not important. Health and sanity come first.
    From the view of an addicted listener, I’d say maybe you could rotate staff, as someone else recommended, so that the podcast could continue. Each person could still have their time off but the podcast could still go on.
    Cheers. 😀

  39. I’m thinking that maybe the TWIT army will understand. But the problem is the influx of new listeners. If you go on hiatus for a month, it should be clear on the website or in iTunes that you’ll be returning, or the new listeners won’t even bother subscribing thinking that the show is dead.

  40. This reminds me of when TWiT first started and hell was risen if it was more than a day late. Of course this was back in the day when only a few good pod/netcasts existed and we needed our tech news and TSS memories. Now that many more great content-filled shows are out there, I don’t think taking some time off would bring the same upset in the community. That said, I don’t think a multi-month break would be a great idea. Better would be take a week or two off every other month or so, or don’t worry about needing a show each and every week (except for Security Now ;).
    Regardless, do want _you_ need to do, Leo, and let us deal with it.

  41. We get 30 Days in the Military, and while we do more by 0630 then most Americans do in a single day…
    You My friend do more for the Twit Army then most Army’s do in a single year!!
    Take some time off Leo.. Recharge your batteries…This is when you put the “BEST OF” stuff up..
    I know I look forward to hearing your stuff, but I will be around when you get back. If I can survive Mr. Thurott Galavanting all over Fry World..(FRANCE) 😉
    We can handle it…
    Da-Chief

  42. While I hate to go a couple weeks without any of my twit podcasts, I think you guys probably are due for a break. (Especially Leo)

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