On November 8, rabble.ca announced the creation of the rabble podcast network (rpn). The rpn is a free collection of 100 per cent Canadian podcasts that cover books, politics, storytelling, music, activism and future tech.

Podcasts are short audio shows available online. They can be downloaded and listened to on desktop computers or can be transferred to portable music devices like the popular iPod. Listeners can subscribe to podcasts and have the latest episodes automatically sent to them.

“The rpn is a natural extension of rabble.ca‘s interest in media democracy,” said rabble founder and feminist Judy Rebick. “It will allow new Canadian voices, often ignored by mainstream media, to reach an audience of 300,000 plus listeners.”

The rpn features podcasters from coast to coast, as well as shows by some well-known Canadian broadcasters and artists including broadcasters Nora Young and Cathi Bond, sound artist Victoria Fenner, documentary director Velcrow Ripper and Halifax hiphop artist Jesse Dangerously.

The National Campus and Community Radio Association will soon be pilottinga national news service on the rpn. Jennifer Moore, Spoken Word Coordinatorat CFRU 93.3 FM FM in Guelph a member station of the NCRA, , already hosts “Homebrew,” a podcast that serves up the best of community radio for a national audience via the rpn.

“We’ve spent a lot of time developing a very powerful podcast publishing system,” said rpn producer Charlotte Scott. “It makes it easy for anyone with a show to get it out there without having to know any coding.”

The rpn hosts its network podcasts for free and plans on offering dozens of shows in the near future. “We’re constantly looking for fresh ideas and voices,” said Scott. “Podcasting has the power to change the face of media in Canada. The rpn is on the leading edge of that change.”