The Lightning Network makes it possible to send and receive bitcoin micropayments. Connecting podcasting and bitcoin enables new income streams for content creators and podcasters. Value4Value is a concept where content is free, but listeners are encouraged to send an amount of their choice to the creator so that the podcast can stay free from advertisements.
Anita Posch had the idea for btcpodcasting.com during her work with Bitcoin for Fairness in African countries. As she has been a podcaster since 2018 and was one of the first Value4Value podcasters globally she wanted to open the possibilities to earn bitcoin to less wealthy creators too.
BTC Podcasting is built with Castopod.org a free & open source self-hosting platform for podcasts. It uses Alby to integrate Lightning payments.
Usually podcast hosting companies charge a minimum of 10-12 USD per month for hosting the mp3 files and creating the podcasts RSS feed. As centralized services they also control the content that is released on their platform. Free podcast hosting is usually only possible if the podcaster signs away the rights to their content (on hosting platforms like Anchor for instance).
Since 10-12 USD is a lot of money if you earn on average 300 USD a month Anita wanted to support Bitcoiners in these regions with the possibility to start their own podcasts too.
To earn bitcoin via a podcast one needs to run their one Lightning node. This requires a lot of know how about the technicalities of Lightning and coding skills, which most people don't have. One day running a node will be so easy and convenient that we all can do it, but until then we'll need to use custodial services.
Up until BTC Podcasting one needed to run a node themselves or subscribe to a hosted node which also costs around 10 USD a month.
With BTC Podcasting you can earn bitcoin and host your podcast without running costs. The platform takes 3% of the podcast streaming income as a fee. Additionally 1% of the income goes to podcastindex.org. Meaning: 96% of the income stream goes directly to the podcast host.
BTC Podcasting will never insert ads into the podcasters mp3 files.
As the situation for Bitcoin educators and podcasters might get difficult and hostile in some countries BTC Podcasting protects the individual podcasters by being the host in a secure environment. Meaning the podcasts will stay online even in case of internet shutdowns.