Podcasting began to catch hold with the public in late 2004, though during the 1998 – 2001 dot-com era there were multiple “podcasts”. Many individuals and groups including Dawn and Drew of The Dawn and Drew Show, Kris and Betsy Smith of Croncast and Dan Klass of The Bitterest Pill contributed to the early emergence and popularity of podcasts. Former MTV VJ Adam Curry is credited with coming up with the idea to automate the delivery and syncing of textual content to portable audio players. The first application to make this process feasible was iPodderX, developed by August Trometer and Ray Slakinski. Since the 1930s there have been radio talk shows and news programs. Today, through the evolution of the internet capabilities, along with cheaper hardware and software, audio podcasts are doing what was historically done through radio broadcast stations.
In June 2005, Apple released iTunes 4.9 with native support for podcasts. While this made receiving podcasts more convenient, it effectively ended advancement of the podcast medium by independent developers. To add to the cooling factor, Apple issued Cease and Desist orders to many podcast application developers and service providers for using the term “iPod” or “Pod” in the name of their product.
February 10, 2005, Shae Spencer Management LLC of Fairport, New York filed a trademark application to register podcast for an “online prerecorded radio program over the internet”. On September 9, 2005, the United States Patent and Trademark Office rejected the application, citing Wikipedia’s podcast entry as describing the history of the term. The company amended their application in March 2006, but the USPTO rejected the amended application as not sufficiently differentiated from the original. In November 2006, the application was marked as abandoned.
As of September 20, 2005, known trademarks that attempted to capitalize on podcast include: GodCast, Podcast Realty, GuidePod, Pod-Casting, MyPod, Podvertiser, Podango, ePodcast, PodCabin, Podcaster, PodcastPeople, PodShop, PodKitchen, Podgram, GodPod and Podcast. By February 2007, there had been 24 attempts to register trademarks containing the word “PODCAST” in United States, but only “PODCAST READY” from Podcast Ready, Inc. was approved.