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You got questions. We've got a FAQ page.

Actually we hope that this answers most questions that people will have, and if not CONTACT US so that we can add to it.

Here goes...

Q. I want to host audio, but why do I need Cyberears.com?
A.

Well if you record audio digitally, people need to be able to download it from somewhere static on the Internet. Unfortunately most web servers, and home PCs are not designed to handle the file sizes of audio media and most ISPs have limits on the amount of traffic that you can use. So you need a hosting company that can handle your files. That's what we do.

But its more than that. The world doesn't listen to audio on just CDs anymore. Now its all about the listener being able to easily grab stuff to listen to, when they want and where they want. The Internet has revolutionized this for people. And this means a great opportunity for audio creators to distribute their creations.

Clearly the missing link is a combination of somewhere to put your files, and as much help as you can get to promote and advertise it. And you need a way to gauge if you are really getting heard. Cyberears.com brings you all of these tools in a simple, convenient and reliable package. Try us out if you want to see for yourself.

Q. What's a Podcast?
A.

Its a way that you can record something (story, radio show, your thoughts, music, etc.) and release it to the masses. People find out that you have done this, and subscribe to it so that each time you create an episode, they automatically download it. Its really cool. You should try it.

Podcasts really get misunderstood by people. They are really just a way for listeners to say, "Hey, I really like what you are doing - can you make sure I get to hear everything that you release, please?". But offering your files as a Podcast, people can just subscribe to the Podcast. This means that when you upload a new file to Cyberears, all of your subscribed listeners will automatically be sent the new file. Its kinda like magic, but really its just a good use of technology. For everyone.

Q. Do you guys host Video Podcasts?
A.

No, that's why we are called 'CyberEars' and not 'CyberEyes' :)
But seriously, CyberEars is all about audio. Think of us as the place to store your 'home grown radio show'. Our feelings are that there are plenty of video hosting sites on the Internet and until video can be watched easily by everyone without them having to sit in front of a computer to do it, we will stick with audio hosting. After all, how can you watch a video podcast while driving to work without crashing the car? Audio is an ideal mechanism to deliver your message as it allows someone to listen to it while they are doing something else. Video doesn't provide the same level of passive audience, and therefore in our opinion isn't as good a medium to deliver your message to your audience.

Q. Is a Podcast just a MP3 file?
A.

No. Think of a Podcast like a radio show. A radio show airs regularly, and each 'Episode' is a different audio recording. Therefore a Podcast is the general term for the 'show' and the MP3 files are the 'episodes'. When you create a Podcast on CyberEars.com, you are just creating a registration of the show. There is nothing for people to listen to until you upload audio files (MP3) which are associated with the show.

The CyberEars.com system will walk you through this. After creating a Podcast, it will then tell you that you need to upload audio MP3 to the Podcast. When you record your next episode, you then return back to CyberEars.com and upload it. The upload button appears on the 'My Audio' page underneath the list of your Podcasts.

Q. But how do I get found by people?
A. Apart from your own marketing (ie. telling people about your audio files and sending them to Cyberears.com to get them), we will automatically register your Podcasts with a bunch of Podcast search engines and registries. This way you will be found. People hang on these search engines looking for content that is in the area that they are interested in. When they find it, they will simply try out one of your recordings. If they like it, they'll subscribe so that they get anything new that you release (if you want them to).
Q. But I want to make some money from this. I've invested enough money in equipment over the years and I want to get something back
A. We hear ya. Podcasts are probably not the best method to obtain revenue from your audio creations because they are, by their nature, free. But once you have enticed a listener to hear you, and they like it, its pretty easy to sell them products.
Q. What are your fees?
A. Fees are fully discussed in the various packages that we offer. CLICK HERE to read all about the Packages and their options.
Q. What do I get for the first 7 Days?
A. The full details on what is offered in our free 7 Day trial subscription program can be found HERE. Its designed to get you started so that you can see how valuable our service is and what it can do to help you get heard on the Internet. You then have the option to upgrade to a paid subscription service and continue enjoying the benefits of Cyberears.com
Q. What about copyrights?
A. We are VERY serious about copyrights. Cyberears.com requires you to stipulate that you are the legal owner of any material that you upload to our site. If we find out you have lied on this application and that, in fact, you are not the legal owner of the material, your account is immediately terminated without any refunds due to you, and you will be reported to the appropriate authorities. This is not a free Warez, MP3 file sharing or p0rn site. This is a serious facility for original audio creators to get exposure to their work. We cooperate with all legal authorities and disclose any information requested regarding possible copyright violation.
Q. I'm a corporation and interested in using Cyberears.com to host audio for our employees, shareholders, management meetings, etc. Can you help me?
A. Absolutely. We feel that there is a great value to any organization who wishes to share information whether for internal purposes or to the general public. Cyberears.com have the facilities to accommodate this. Please CHECK THIS OUT for more information on our Enterprise offerings.
Q. Do you have the ability to do custom 'branding' of Cyberears.com so that it can fit with our existing website?
A. Sure. That's exactly what we have done for a number of organizations who have incorporated Cyberears.com into their product or service offerings. Again this is part of our ENTERPRISE offerings.
Q. Are you interested in investors?
A. Sure. Talk to us about it.
Q. I'm with the press. Do you have any standard Press Information?
A. Yep. Here please CONTACT US and we'll put together a Press package for you.
Q. Can't I just host my own files on my computer?
A.

Theoretically if you are permanently connected to the Internet, you can. But if you have a pretty popular show, forget about using your Internet connection for anything else. The bandwidth requirements to host audio files will mean that unless you have some incredibly big 'pipe' connected to the Internet, the download traffic required by your audience will pretty much kill your connection.

And then you have to have some way of offering the files. You'll need server software, web servers, security, etc. For most musicians, its just too hard. We feel that for the low price of Cyberears.com, its so much better to just let the professionals take care of it all for you. Then you can get back to making great audio creations.

Q. What sort of technology do you guys have?
A. Well there's a lot. Probably more than we can fit here. But we have five (5) OC-48 redundant backbone feeds to the core of the Internet, with dozens of redundant servers and over 10 terabytes of storage capacity (growing all the time). Its a pretty big operation, and we're really proud of it. Its all monitored 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week. We're pretty maternal to it all, but then we geeks don't get out of the house that much :)
Q. Where are your servers located?
A. We have an array of redundant servers located in Phoenix, Arizona. We also have redundant operations in Indiana. As most of the world's English speaking listening audience for Podcasts are located in the USA, CyberEars.com is ideally located to serve this huge population at lightning speeds. We have a SERIOUS investment in the latest hardware and hosting technologies, but then that is what we do for a living so it kinda makes sense to have the best gear for it.
Q. Can I use copyright material inside of my Podcast?
A.

If you are looking to use some pre-recorded audio as introductory music for your Podcast, keep in mind that you may be violating copyright usage rules. We're not attorneys, so you need to consult one. Unlike radio, Podcasts are recorded 'time-shifted' audio files, and therefore do not conform to the laws regarding licensing and the use of music and other copyright materials on radio shows. Radio shows are typically not held for any length of time, so Podcasts are more like a music recording than a radio show in this regard. Be careful on the use of Audio in your Podcasts to ensure that you do not break any copyright laws and consult the appropriate legal attorney for advice on this.

If you are interested in having music 'custom written' for your Podcast, you might want to check out these guys..... www.troubledclef.com If the music is written for your show, you can probably get an unlimited license for its use. Also there is probably a wealth of 'royalty free' music out there you could use as well. Try doing a Google.com search and see what you find.

Q. I have a radio show. Can I use CyberEars.com to store archives of it for my audience?
A.

Yes, but please keep in mind the licensing differences between radio airplay licensing and audio recordings. When you create a permanent recording of your radio show, and allow it to be downloaded it no longer conforms to the licensing requirements for 'real time' broadcasts. Therefore if you include the airing of copyright material in your show, chances are that you do not have the appropriate license or rights to distribute it as a recorded archive.

You need to ensure that you have the apprpropriate licenses in place to do this and should consult with your attorney regarding this matter.

We'd be happy to host the files for you, however please keep in mind that we are unable to host any content that contains copyrighted materials that you do not have license to distribute as recorded audio.

Q. I uploaded audio to CyberEars.com but when I click on the PLAY button on your site, it sounds like 'Chipmunks'. The pitch is much higher than I originally recorded it at? What's going on?
A.

Our player on CyberEars.com uses Macromedia (now Adobe) Flash. There is a general requirement for all Flash players on the web that the sample rate of the MP3 be recorded using a sample rate that is divisble by 11.025 kHz. If not, the Flash player attempts to compensate for this by changing the pitch of the audio to bring it closest to a sample rate that it can handle.

This is a pretty common 'standard' for MP3 sample rates, and you should choose a sample rate of one of the following below for your audio in order to ensure that it plays correctly not only on our site, but with any other player that respects the same requirements. The following sample rates are considered 'standard' for MP3 files:

44.1khz
22.05khz
11.025khz

Generally the higher the sample rate, the better quality the audio is. But the trade off is that the higher the sample rate, the larger the audio file is. This means that a file that is very large may not be heard by as many listeners as you would like simply because they won't wait around for it to be downloaded. We'd suggest with Podcasts that you stick to 22.05hz for audio episodes that are greater than 45 mins in length, or 44.1khz for audio episodes less than 45 mins in length to ensure the correct balance of sound fidelity and download times.

But regardless of what sample rate you choose, please keep in mind that the sample rate should be compatible with Flash based players such as our site uses.

Most audio recording programs will let you set the sample rate of the resulting MP3 file that you create, so check with your audio recording software and make sure you set a sample rate that is compatible with our player in order to ensure the best possible audio experience for your listeners.

Q. I'm not much of a recording engineer. Where can I learn more about recording my Podcast?
A, There are lots of books listed on the Home page of CyberEars.com that will teach you about Podcasting, recording, etc. However you may not be aware that a lot of the recording equipment companies, including Alesis, have produced bundled Podcasting Kits that make the process pretty simple. They usually include microphones, headphones, some even have small mixing boards when you need multiple people on the show. This combined with audio recording software (and there are plenty of those, even FREE ones, out there), can get you a MP3 file ready to be uploaded for your Podcasting.
Q. I have a Podcast already hosted with some other company. I'm not happy with my current hosting and I want to move it to CyberEars.com. How can I do this without losing my current iTunes registration for my Podcast?
A.

We get this question a lot. iTunes is probably one of the most important registries of Podcasts you can have, as so many people will find you on that registry. However they also don't respond in person very easily to the needs of an individual host on their listngs. They also don't currently have an easy way for you to change the Feed URL from one host to another.

Here is some information from their website that you might want to take a look at:

http://www.apple.com/itunes/store/podcaststechspecs.html

Specifically, scroll down to the section entitled 'Changing your Feed URL' for more information.

If you are unable to have your current host make these changes for you, you could try getting in direct contact with Apple about it. Here's a link to their Podcast support staff:

http://www.apple.com/support/itunes/store/podcast/

 

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