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Why I Podcast: They Walk Among Us
Why I Podcast: They Walk Among Us
Tapping into the minds of Acast podcasters from around the world to find out what podcasting means to them.
Everyone has their reasons for picking up the mic. Perhaps they want to share an untold story, discover a creative outlet, or even build a community and start a movement. Whatever that reason, podcasting is the perfect way to get your voice heard.
For International Podcast Day 2022, we’re tapping into the minds of Acast podcasters from around the world to find out what makes them tick in our Why I Podcast interview series. Be inspired and learn how successful podcasters stay motivated when creating, what they love about podcasting, and why the medium is so special for creators and listeners alike.
They Walk Among Us delves into the UK’s most chilling hometown crimes, and has received praise for its sharp storytelling and thoughtful production style — which culminated in the show taking home a British Podcast Award for Best True Crime Podcast.
In 2021, the team launched a new series to cover crimes across the pond, with They Walk Among America. We chatted with Benjamin Fitton, one half of the husband-and-wife duo — alongside Rosanna — behind the award-winning true crime podcast, to find out what podcasting means to them.
Tell us about yourself. What is your podcast about?
I'm Benjamin Fitton and I host They Walk Among Us, a true crime podcast that explores the darker side of society within the UK. We try to focus on the victims of crimes and the outcome of criminal acts without personal judgment.
When did you get started in the wonderful world of podcasting?
Actually, this September is our six-year anniversary of officially starting the podcast. It's been a wild ride. We can't believe They Walk Among Us has gathered the traction that it has.
Why did the medium of podcasting appeal to you in the first place?
Myself and my wife Rosie started the podcast together in 2016. We had been listening to true crime podcasts for a while, but at the time, there were no UK-based true crime shows, so we took the challenge on and haven't looked back.
Contrary to other entertainment mediums, podcasting is something you can start at home with little budget.
What is it about podcasts that attracts storytellers and their listeners?
This ties into the previous answer; podcasting is a cost-effective way to get stories out there on your own terms using your own style. It's a creative outlet that has the potential to be shared with hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.
As to why people love them, it's a free source of information in more bite-sized portions than an audiobook. They can be absorbed any time, anywhere — on a long journey, walking the dog or cleaning the house. Podcasting is a really accessible medium.
Why is podcasting important to you?
Podcasting is fantastic for getting niche content out there into the right person's ears. To be able to find an indie podcast that you can relate to without it being filtered through glossy production is a more personal experience.
The success of They Walk Among Us has meant that we work on it full-time. It's an absolute privilege to be able to work doing something we are passionate about and interested in. However, it has really brought the thought of injustices to the forefront of our minds. Also, a paranoia that other true crime consumers will understand, double checking the doors are locked every night.
How’s your relationship with your listeners?
It's a deliberate choice in our podcast to not focus on the host but rather on the content. It's not a "personality" podcast, as it is often dealing with troubling content. I'd say the majority of our listeners aren't aware of who the team behind it are, as there isn't that necessity to engage.
How does podcasting fulfill you creatively?
I think as a podcast we've progressed a lot in six years. There's a lot of work involved in producing each episode. There are so many opportunities for creativity, from the artwork for each episode and script structure to audio editing and scoring.
We really enjoy working together — in the last year we've taken on two other members of the team. Emily from Morbidology and Eileen from Crimelapse have joined us as additional writers. With that, it changed the working dynamic and added even more creative focus to the podcast, having two more creative brains onboard.
Do you have any favorite episodes?
It's difficult to pick a favorite episode, given the subject matter. With the new team, we've been able to produce additional episodes and focus more on unsolved cases or missing people. The hope is an episode could be enough to reignite an investigation or encourage a witness to come forward.
Launching They Walk Among Us America was a big milestone. How did that come about?
Law&Crime contacted us about collaborating on a project. We found their channel really interesting — the focus on trials inside an American courtroom. An American version of our podcast had been in the back of our minds for a few years. It was only when we teamed up with Law&Crime it became a possibility.
We've been lucky enough to welcome a new host recently, Nina Innsted, who created the Already Gone podcast. She has the empathetic delivery we were looking for and a very calming voice.
And, finally, what’s next for the podcast?
We currently have an exciting project on the back burner which has slowly been evolving over the last couple of years. We won't say much more other than it's a long-form podcast and should be released late next year.
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