I absolutely love Dan Benjamin’s 5by5 radio network. It has completely supplanted my drive time radio listening (which used to be all sports talk radio), as I mentioned in my post, The Nail in Old Media’s Coffin. He’s a prime example of the internet displacing traditional media. I literally don’t have enough drive time to listen to all of his interesting podcasts, and I highly suggest them to anyone moderately interested in tech or even in the tech business world.
Fortune Tech took a look behind the scenes of his operation:
In stark contrast to the rapid-fire, deadline-driven pace of most cable news and drive-time radio, Benjamin gives the impression that his guests have all the time in the world — which in a sense they do. Any subject that he and his co-hosts can’t dispose of in 60 to 90 minutes is simply pushed forward to next week’s show.
So in 2009, at age 37, with a two-year-old son and a supportive wife but no visible means of financial support, Benjamin decided to take the plunge. “I bet I could pay the rent,” he recalls. “I bet there was business here.”
He built his own broadcast facilities, coding the website by hand and putting together the Linux network that runs it. 5by5 — an old NATO radio term meaning “loud and clear” — was launched in January 2010.
Today Benjamin hosts nine shows himself — all with audio, some with video — and produces shows for a half dozen outside hosts. And he’s more than just paying the rent.
“I feel like there is the potential to make this much bigger,” he says. “My goal is not to be on every show. My goal is to build a platform for people who are creative and insightful, and to remove the obstacles for them to show up for 30 minutes every week and be awesome.
“This is the next form of media. It’s like radio. It’s like TV. But it’s different, this platform of independent content creation. This really really is the future.”