When we created the Science 2.0 movement, it quickly caught cultural fire. Blogging became the thing to do, to such an extent that corporate media entered with contracts for scientists while outlets like the BBC began to explore publishing user-generated content.

Social media filled the void when the blogging movement faded and while it changed journalism - articles about social media responses became common - it did nothing for knowledge creation and scientific peer review. Instead of blogging being a firewall for the public regarding science content, pay-to-publish journals claiming to be peer-reviewed instead overwhelmed the ability of scientists to look at it all.

A new book argues that scholarly podcasting may be the next wave. Podcasting has been around even longer than Science 2.0, we discussed it often in our early days. The authors outline the historical development of the norms of scholarly communication and speculate about the transformative potential of new modes of creating and reviewing expert knowledge.

Could podcasting change the ways we think about scholarly work?

Perhaps for some. Celebrities like Joe Rogan and the NFL's Manning brothers have showed the power of podcasting but it may have limitations. Google search will need to change to parse all audio content, and find new ways to establish authority. Large language models (so-called AI) will easily create audio content, and podcasting forces readers to slow down their brains to the pace of the speakers, which may be frustrating for those who know how to read science papers. In arguments it will be difficult to cite a podcast and be taken seriously.

The future is wide open. AI can now easily write content and create, someone may need to create an LLM to separate science from 9,000 epidemiology papers claiming some link between a common chemical and human disease.