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Being a Guest on Deep Fried Bytes

Posted by Keith Elder | Posted in Podcast | Posted on 03-03-2011

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This past week I was at the MVP Summit on campus at Microsoft. I may blog about the experience later (still debating). However, there is one thing I wanted to cover because I had so many people ask that I need to set the record straight.

The Story

Here’s the scenario that was repeated multiple times. The setup is I would bump into a fellow MVP I knew either online or from seeing at other conferences or whatever. 

Friend: Hey man how are things going?

Me: Great!

Friend: So… when are you going to get me on your podcast?

Me: Anytime just send an email to comments@deepfriedbytes.com and we’ll set something up.

And this scenario repeated itself MANY times throughout the week. The more it happened the more I realized we were sending the wrong message. I was really saddened by it because my friends somehow thought we didn’t want them on the show because we hadn’t asked. This is really not the case nor how it works.

Sometimes we’ll want to cover a specific topic and will reach out to someone. But most of the time it is because someone was just in the right place at the right time.

He who shouts from the tallest tree is heard the loudest.

What To Do

Here’s what to do to get on the show.

  1. Email comments@deepfriedbytes.com you have a topic to discuss on the show

How’s that for simplicity?

What Not To Do

  1. Ask us to email you.

    Honestly we are going to forget. If you *really* want to be a guest on the show you’ll take the proper action to make that happen. Also think about it just like submitting a talk to a conference or code camp. The code camp doesn’t know you want to speak there. Thus you have to submit a talk and then if you are chosen you go speak. Same thing here.

  2. Don’t beat the horse to death.

    Ever heard that expression? Usually it is used in the context where someone keeps saying the same thing over and over and over. In the context of submitting something to DFB don’t submit a talk that has literally been beat to death in the community.

    For example let’s say you want to talk about shiny cool technology called Hoodaledo. Since you are excited to talk about it you try to hit as many podcasts as you can. By doing so you just beat the horse to death. Why? Because people that listen to podcast listen to more than one. Odds are they will hear the same story over and over. Seriously ask yourself would you want to listen to say the same thing two or three times? No.  

  3. Submit a talk that has been done in the last 6 months on another show.

    We aren’t trying to sound snobby (seriously I mean that) but it goes back to point number two. We have a rule that if you’ve done talk X on someone else’s show then we will not cover it on DFB until six months goes by. Basically we are trying to help with the beating of the horse problem we see. After six months if you feel you really want to do it on DFB then submit it.

    Think about it from our perspective. We spend an enormous amount of time to produce our shows. And because of that we always want to release something amazing for our listeners. What we don’t want to do is spend our time working on something that someone else has already covered.

  4. Submit a talk about a product for marketing purposes.

    We do a lot of coverage of the major Microsoft Events like TechEd, MIX and PDC. As officially approved media we get people asking us to interview them about a product announcement before these events. If you are looking to let tens of thousands  (millions? trillions?) of developers world wide know about your product then contact us and we’ll provide sponsorship information so you can get your message out.

    I will say we did make one exception to this rule a couple of years ago with Preemptive Solutions. The reason we did is because their product has been free for developers in Visual Studio since day one and they give a lot to the community. We felt we were justified in talking about one of their updates to that product.

  5. Don’t submit a talk on a topic we’ve covered recently.

    Seriously, how many shows can you listen to on MVC before you get burned out? We have to keep show mix varied so watch that. If you fall into this category then let some time go by and then send us something.

Is It Automatic?

No. Just because you send us something doesn’t mean it is an automatic.

Going back to the submitting a talk to a conference analogy we look at what you’ve sent us, discuss it and consider many things. Some are no brainers, and if it isn’t we’ll give you a call (not email, a call so be sure to include phone number).  We’ll discuss the *angle* and try to tweak it to help figure out the angle and how we can make it work. Hopefully we can make it work and move on. If not, then try and try again but DO NOT give up.

We Will Take Anything

Deep Fried Bytes was intentionally not branded as a show tied to a specific technology. Both Chris and I have a wide variety of interest and have done many things. Years ago I can remember writing .Net code at work, going home and working on my Mac and then twice a week teach Linux certification classes at the local college. While we mainly target shows for developers we can and will talk about anything *geeky*. So just don’t think you always have to submit something about writing software. It could be IT related, or maybe it has a battery or plugs into the wall.  Really the majority of us are geeks and like to learn about everything.

Want to talk Ruby on Rails? Great, so do we. PHP? Good us too. Erlang? Linux? Xbox? Security? IT? What makes a good CIO?  Yep we’ll talk about any of that. Honestly we like the break from talking writing software and we’ve heard from our listeners they do as well.

The bottom line is we’ll talk about whatever. While we’ve produced a lot of shows around Microsoft technologies (because that’s what we do for a living today) we will cover anything from any area. If it is geeky we are all in.

Apology

To our friends who thought we didn’t want you on the show, seriously we really do. Our guests are THE most important asset we have. Our show is all about our guests and without our guests we wouldn’t have a show. Thus you are very important to us.

Hopefully this helps to straighten all of this out and I apologize for not writing this all down sooner. I really should have because I’ve had to repeat it verbally about 1000 times.

Ok, that’s it. Call for topics is now open. Go.

  • Anonymous

    Which is yet another reason I wrote this all down! I wasn’t keeping my conversations DRY (don’t repeat yourself).

    It is a good question Ben. While I have had many conversations with other show hosts I’ve never had *this* conversation with them. I do know another show re-tweeted this and said this pretty much goes for their show as well.

    The main thing I was trying to *fix* writing this down is the stigma around how I think people we know or even close friends feel whereby they haven’t been asked to do a show. We’ve had numerous conversations with people about doing a show but I think it is important for everyone to know we have an open door policy. If you have something to talk about, send it to us, let us review it to make sure we aren’t breaking any of the “what not to do” rules.

    Thanks on the show props, we’ve had great feedback on that show.

    -Keith

  • Ben

    You related this same story/explanation to me at ChezNeward just before you caught a cab, if you recall. I didn’t have a chance to ask you at the time, but do you feel that this is a pretty standard process amongst the software engineering podcasts out there? Anyway keep up the good work on the podcast; I especially enjoyed the Multiparadigmatic episode.