Set up a podcast and other types of communities?

Hey Discourse gods,

You folks should consider setting up a instance of Discourse to attract the podcast community. I’ve been listening to more and more history podcast, and one of the issues I am constantly wrestling with is how does a community find itself. At this point Twitter hashtags seem to help bring these into being, but it seems that a series of Disourse instances set up in subdomains would be a opportunity for you. Even to the point of YOU setting them up. Stuff like; or even & would be an obvious draw to folks looking to meet others interested in a topic.

I just recommended this idea via tweet to 2 podcasters, but after I did, I thought, I’d just create a topic here too. You might even create an “outreach” subcommittee at Discourse to help run forums on non-tech communities. I’d be happy to help, if you ever consider doing something like this.


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Hey Rich. Thanks for being a Discourse evangelist!

Some sort of turnkey solution aimed specifically at podcasters isn’t likely to happen any time soon, but we’d be happy to extend a discount to a few early-adopter podcast communities that you send our way.

Do you have some good examples of podcasts using a forum/mailinglist/similar to great effect? Doesn’t have to be a Discourse forum. The only current example of ours that comes to mind is, which is a big one, but then again they are so much more than just a podcast.

Having good examples like that to point to is crucial if you’re gonna have any luck in convincing other podcasts that a forum community would do them good. It’s also important to only get in touch with podcasts that are in fact in a good place to start building a community. Good signs include:

  • 500+ regular listeners
  • Frequent activity on Facebook/Twitter
  • Discussion-friendly subject matter (e.g. drones, software, politics etc.)

I’ve been meaning to do something like this for quite some time. I’ll let you know if I spin something up.


Actually what I am talking about would be more of a tool for podcast listeners rather than podcasters. The idea is to set up community centers to attract people. I understand that you guys build a tool, which is the push side, but I think you could also work on the pull side. Meaning. Provide communities for a number of things, that would attract users, So, instead of getting a podcaster to create a forum, have Discourse create the forum, and then get some of the podcasters and podcast listeners to use it. You know if say… Disqus the comment system? When what if Discourse could become a alternative to that. Or maybe a better example would be to become an alternative to Reddit. The goal would be to become so known that if I listen to a podcast, I would then pop over to to talk about it. So, I guess what I am recommending is that you not only offer the tool, but you make some actual communities yourself. Even become an alternative to facebook. You might start out by picking a few non-tech markets/communities… like “podcasts” and see if the idea works.


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There is a huge difference between what the two of us are describing though.

Whereas getting organised to do some grassroots Discourse evangelism would require just a few hours from me and whoever wants to join the effort, what you describe is a massive engineering project which would also be a huge risk. Facebook tried to make such a thing with Rooms. They failed, and they didn’t even have to make money from it!

For the foreseeable future we are only in the community hosting business, not in the community generation/curation/management business such as Reddit, or Imzy.