The technology behind podcasting has some great features like easy subscription, automatic delivery, aggregation, other benefits of RSS, etc… But simply put, podcasting is just the sharing of audio and video clips over the internet. But which form is better or more effective, audio or video? You can listen to audio from anywhere, but video is often more engaging. Thus, for some circumstances audio maybe appropriate, whereas in others video podcasts maybe better served. For Law Enforcement, both audio and video podcasting can be used to in different ways to serve the same overall purpose. Here are just a few examples of law enforcement can use podcasting in both its forms:

Audio

Audio clips are great for quick updates.

  • When there is a situation that has to be updated regularly and it is important for citizens to receive the information as quick as possible then audio podcasts can be used every effectively. For example – An AMBER alert. The public needs to know this information as quick as possible, and it is important that the situation can be regularly updated because it is of great concern for the community. An audio podcast is fast and easy to record and share using DailySplice’s FieldCast System, and will automatically delivered to all subscribers as soon as it is recorded.

Check out the Saanich Police “Quick Updates” podcast.

Audio clips save time with media contacts.

  • Not all of the important information a police department would like to have covered actually gets covered the News broadcast or Newspaper; however, when it does a PIO can have a backlog of media requests. He or she may have to talk to dozens of media contacts and explain the whole story over and over again. Instead of answering the same old questions, a PIO can record one audio podcast and have that go around to all media contacts, and only answer unique questions as they come up.

Check out the Saanich Police “Media Releases” podcast.

Video

Video is great for sharing visual information of a suspect – For example surveillance videos.

  • Surveillance video is used to catch criminals in the act or at least get an idea of who was in a certain area during a crime. It helps police get a visual of a suspect and makes him or her easier to identify, as well as provides undisputable evidence in court. Now, what if this video was put in front of the eyes of hundreds in the community? There is no doubt that the chances of identifying and catching the criminal go way up. Crime Stoppers have been using video on the News and in commercials to help garner support and tips from the community. A video podcast gives law enforcement its own News channel where these videos can be shared, stored and viewed at a citizen’s convenience – easily more effect than just traditional media.

Check out Saanich Police “Unsolved Crimes.”

Video is an effective tool for educational purposes.

  • To keep community’s safe police must be constantly informing its citizens on the most prevalent dangers, and provide tips and advice on how to combat these threats. Many people are visual learners, and watching a video online often stays with them longer than hearing and trying to remember the information they heard on the 6 o’clock News. For example fire safety is one of most important but neglected topics in today’s communities. People are aware of the threat and most have “heard” how to prevent fires or what to do in the case of a fire. A video podcast however, can show citizens exactly how fires are started, how to prevent them, and what to do when one starts. Again, having these videos in front of your community’s eyes and stored on the internet for on-demand viewing can make fire safety education much more effective.

Check out the View Royal Fire Rescue “Fire Prevention” podcast.