NYT And Spotify Prohibit Luminary From Using Open RSS Feeds For ‘The Daily’ And ‘Reply All’

Isheka N. Harrison
Written by Isheka N. Harrison
Luminary Launches
[Images: courtesy of Luminary]

Luminary launched today. But the $100 million-backed premium podcast venture did so without top shows such as New York Times’ (NYT) “The Daily” and Spotify’s “Reply All,” The Verge reported. The media giants’ decisions to restrict Luminary from using open RSS feeds for their crème de la crème content may have the future of podcasting hanging in the balance.

The decision came after a Luminary committed a major marketing faux pas last month. The well-funded start-up tweeted, “Podcasts don’t need ads.” Since many podcast creators make their livings on ad revenue, the message was not well received.

Luminary CEO and co-founder Matt Sacks acknowledges the tweet was poorly delivered. He insists he only meant people should have options between subscribing to a premium, ad-free podcast service like Luminary’s or listening to podcasts for free and dealing with ads.

Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 25: Liz Burr

Jamarlin talks to digital media guru and MIT graduate Liz Burr. They talk about business prospects for podcasting, censoring Black artists and activists online, and how using the N-word got a top exec fired at Netflix.

Sacks is still optimistic about their ability to do well in the market, however.

“We’re focused on building a great product experience and having great content, and if we do those two things, we’re very confident that we’ll be able to find our best market,” he told The Verge.

Some of Sacks’ enthusiasm rests on offerings of original, exclusive and current podcasts with popular hosts like Trevor Noah and Karamo Brown. On its website, the company has branded itself as “a premium podcast app that offers access to shows from top creators you won’t find anywhere else, plus the ones you already love.”

The $8-per-month subscription service is hoping to change the game, despite the podcast industry being hesitant to charge users for its content, according to Forbes.

But with NYT and Spotify withholding premier shows and the latter building its own podcast conglomerate, some are skeptical whether Luminary can live up to its goal to be the Netflix of podcasting.

Time will tell. The world will just have to watch – or rather listen – and see.

About Isheka N. Harrison

Isheka N. Harrison is an experienced writer, editor, educator, media and communications professional who thoroughly enjoys telling people’s stories. A former editor of the South Florida Times, Isheka has been featured as a speaker for New Florida Majority’s “Black Women in Media” Panel for Women’s History Month, served as a judge for JM Lexus’ 2018 African American Achievers Awards and named one of “South Florida’s 40 Under 40 Black Leaders of Today and Tomorrow” by Legacy Magazine/Miami Herald. A native of Miami, Isheka's work has appeared in notable local and national media outlets including: ESSENCE Magazine, Upscale Magazine, The Miami Herald, The Miami Times and more. She holds a Master’s Degree in Public Relations from Kent State University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Clark Atlanta University. Isheka is also a member of several para-professional organizations including the Black Professionals Network (BPN), National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) South Florida and ColorComm. To learn more about her story, you can connect with Isheka on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/ishekah or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @ishekah. To pitch her any tips or ideas for articles, email her at iharrison@moguldom.com.