Today, together with Mevlut Oguz, we talk about Podcast Kurdi, a media platform that has grown rapidly and attracted attention since the day it started podcasting. Oguz is a successful journalist and one of the founders of the Podcast Kurdî.
Podcasting and Podcasting in Kurdish
Q: As we know ‘podcasting’ has developed rapidly in the world since the 2000s and has established itself as a valuable mass. Well, when was the Podcast Kurdi created, by whom? Can you briefly talk about the “Podcast Kurdi”?
A: As far as I know and follow podcasts and podcast makers around the world have reached a good stage and in recent years we are also seeing it becoming more and more popular. As you know, for many years some audio news was published on international media outlets such as SBS, VOA, Voice of Russia,and WDRTo some extent, people can label them as podcasts. However, there have been several personal efforts in this area, but there has been a clear need for such work, a need for a consistent and stable platform of this kind.
Before I get into the creation of the Podcast Kurdî*, let me say this, since the beginning of 2019 I have been producing radio news for the German WDR from time to time as a freelancer, and some of this news was also published on the WDR website.
I can say that this paved the way for my podcasting. We and a few close friends were talking to each other about podcasting and making podcasts but it still stayed in the idea stage. At such a time, at the beginning of 2020, our colleague M. Salih Bedirkhan talked about the Kurdish Podcast project and thus I participated in the project. After consulting and consulting, defining the general points of publication, basic technical preparations; program definition, jingle, etc., started podcasting on Kurdish podcast on March 21, 2020, under the coordination of Rabia Cetin and M.Salih Bedirkhan.
In the beginning, Fatos Yildiz, Roza Sierra, Hozan Adar, and Salih Bedirkhan, and I were producing podcasts. Then a few other friends joined us. We also have a section called “The Voice of Journalists” where we publish podcasts for freelance journalists. Here, I have to give a special thanks to the musician and tonmeister Gokçe Selim for making jingle and music for us.
Importance of Podcast Kurdi
Q: What is the purpose of the Podcast Kurdi? What topics are you focusing on? What genre (live, scripted, etc.) do you create podcasts? Do you have a project in the coming days or not?
A: We are journalists and our goal is to report, to report truth and fact; our goal is to provide a media and communication service to our Kurdish-speaking people. As far as our understanding and comprehension, as much as our ability and knowledge and of course in Kurdish, reach the Kurdish word through new media tools (new media). Our goal and expectation are that some audio, file, and interview will be recorded in the archives and will be listened to again in the next three months or even three years.
As the name implies, we create audio files or podcasts. In general, we can say that podcasts are those audio products that can be listened to on any digital platform and through technological devices such as smartphones, computers, or tablets, anywhere and anytime.
First of all, we want to continue this work steadily and continuously and create a sound archive. As long as we have the time and opportunity we want to continue to do this and as our opportunities increase we will improve our recording base and sound quality. Shortly, some interesting topics and interesting guests will be with our listeners.
Q: Can you talk about your colleagues? Who are they, what are their roles in the research?
A: The Podcast Kurdi team consists of a group of independent journalists and researchers. Podcaster defines and prepares its content. Our friends Hozan Adar and Ozcan Şahin are responsible for technical and distribution jobs.
The programs and people who prepare and present these programs are as follows:
It is an alternative culture and art program that I prepare and present for the Podcast Kurdi. Derkenar contents cultural, artistic, and literary news outside the agenda, various topics, success stories, and interesting interviews. Derkenar’s goal and expectation are that some topics will be archived and re-listened over three months or even three years.
Our collaborator and coordinator M. Salih Bedirxan prepares a program called “Rabêj” that focuses more on the agenda and political and social issues.
Fotoş Yıldız is podcasting a program called “Kadraja Kurdî” which focuses on world cinema and Kurdish cinema.
Roza Sierra is preparing a program called “Tûrik” which focuses on Kurdish folklore and culture.
Hozan Adar listens to the experiences of Kurdish journalists in his program “Çîrokên Rojnamegeran”.
Moreover, our new co-workers Ronya Bewran called “Henarêri” and Weysel Yildizxan called “Vajor” are podcasting two programs in Kirmanckî*. Ali Fikri Işik is preparing a football program called “Binergeh”.
“Dengê Rojnamegeran” is also a platform for Kurdish journalists and researchers in all parts of Kurdistan and the world. In this section, Kurdish journalists and researchers freely communicate with the audience in Kurdish.
Funding of Podcast Kurdi
Q: Do you get funding for this work from anywhere or not?
A: Because we wanted to explain some topics in Kurdish and to try this new communication tool, we started voluntarily and after four or five months a British institution accepted our project and received funding over a year. We are currently working on advertising models, financing, and Patreon account and I am sure it will be activated soon. There is a need for a budget for the autonomy and continuity of podcasts.
Also through your Torgene, we call that we are open to cooperation and offers of advertising and support. Please support this modest and sincere project. Let your heart be in the place where we will with your support, strengthen our technical base, improve the sound quality and this will also help us to prepare specific and interesting programs.
Who is Mevlut Oguz
Mevlut Oguz is originally from Batman’s Hasankeyf district. He completed his bachelor’s degree in history at the University of the Firat. His poems and articles have been published in magazines such as Pengav, Çirûsk, W Magazine, Nûbihar, and many other magazines.
He is the editor of Ziryab music magazine. After writing in various magazines, newspapers, and websites, he started working professionally as a journalist in 2017 and has been an editor and correspondent for international media outlets such as Sputnik and WDR Cosmo. He prepares and presents a cultural, artistic, and literary program called Derkenar on the Podcast Kurdi. Since July 2020, he has been working at the Ismail Besikci Foundation as the communication and media manager. Oguz is a member of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Kurdish PEN.
**Kirmancki is one of the Kurdish dialects.