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On the Media

WNYC

The Peabody Award-winning On the Media podcast is your guide to examining how the media sausage is made. Host Brooke Gladstone examines threats to free speech and government transparency, cast a skeptical eye on media coverage of the week’s big stories and unravel hidden political narratives in everything we read, watch and hear.

The Peabody Award-winning On the Media podcast is your guide to examining how the media sausage is made. Host Brooke Gladstone examines threats to free speech and government transparency, cast a skeptical eye on media coverage of the week’s big stories and unravel hidden political narratives in everything we read, watch and hear.

Location:

New York, NY

Networks:

WNYC

Description:

The Peabody Award-winning On the Media podcast is your guide to examining how the media sausage is made. Host Brooke Gladstone examines threats to free speech and government transparency, cast a skeptical eye on media coverage of the week’s big stories and unravel hidden political narratives in everything we read, watch and hear.

Language:

English

Contact:

On the Media 160 Varick Street New York, NY 10013 646-829-4074


Episodes

Pigeon with A Mustache

12/3/2021
By now, the new coronavirus variant has been detected in dozens of countries – including the U.S. On this week’s On the Media, hear what pigeons can tell us about how to react to the omicron variant. Plus, why we should know the names of the scientists in Botswana, South Africa, and Hong Kong who found the new strain. And what rights we do, and don't, have when it comes to when we die. 1. Katherine J. Wu [@KatherineJWu], staff writer at The Atlantic covering science, on what we do (and...

Duration:00:54:17

A Different Hanukkah Story

12/1/2021
This week is Hanukkah, Judaism’s eight-day festival of lights. With its emphasis on present-giving, dreidel games and sweet treats, the holiday seems to be oriented towards kids. Even the story of Hanukkah has had its edges shaved down over time. Ostensibly, the holiday is a celebration of a victory against an oppressive Greek regime in Palestine over two thousand years ago, the miracle of oil that lit Jerusalem's holy temple for 8 days and nights, and the perseverance of the Jewish faith...

Duration:00:16:15

How Cassette Tapes Changed the World

11/26/2021
Cassette tapes mostly gather dust these days. But back in their heyday, they fundamentally changed how we communicate, in ways we’re still making sense of today. On this week’s On the Media, hear how the cassette tape fueled the Iranian revolution, helped pierce the Iron Curtain, and put human connection in the palm of our hands. 1. Simon Goodwin on his innovation to broadcast computer software over the radio back in 1983. Listen. 2. Computer programmer Fuxoft explains his role in...

Duration:00:52:53

Chasing Dash

11/23/2021
Last year at this time, 9 months into the pandemic, so many of us stayed separated from one another, missing out on all the gathering, yam-eating, relative-screaming, football-watching, insert-holiday-themed-cliche-here, of Thanksgiving. Not so this year. This year, vaxxed and tested and maybe even boosted, we gather once more. Like a bunch of gosh-darn superheroes. And so, for this very special Thanksgiving-edition podcast extra, we’re re-airing the story of another lovable, dysfunctional...

Duration:00:16:19

Bait the Nation

11/19/2021
Politicians and pundits on the right are eager to pin rising rates of inflation on President Biden — but that misses the bigger picture. Plus, how scaremongering over 'critical race theory' is impacting elections, school boards and classrooms. And, how the stories we tell about our present shape what's possible for the future, from paid parental leave to immigration policy and beyond. 1. John Cassidy [@JohnCassidy], staff writer at The New Yorker, on the real story behind the inflation...

Duration:00:56:46

The Climate Summit Blues

11/17/2021
The U.N. climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland concluded last weekend—the 26th “Conference of Parties.” After more than two decades of these promises, it’s worth wondering how much of this is all just hot air. According to the non-profit Climate Action Tracker, not a single country is on target to meet the COP21 pledge, also known as the Paris Climate Accords, and many aren’t even on target for their COP3 pledge, the Kyoto Protocol. And yet, these summits are often still covered with...

Duration:00:21:50

Cha-ching!

11/12/2021
Twenty months since the start of the pandemic, economic recovery has been uneven at best. This week, On the Media takes a look at one sector that’s been booming: cryptocurrency and, in particular, NFTs. Hear how a technology invented to give artists more control over their work has become a tool for speculators hoping to win big. 1. Anil Dash [@anildash], CEO of Glitch, helps explain the origin of NFTs. Listen. 2. OTM Correspondent Micah Loewinger [@MicahLoewinger] attends an NFT auction...

Duration:00:51:41

OTM presents The Experiment: Who Would Jesus Mock?

11/10/2021
The satire site The Babylon Bee, a conservative Christian answer to The Onion, stirred controversy when some readers mistook its headlines for misinformation. In this episode of WNYC/The Atlantic's The Experiment, religion reporter Emma Green sits down with the editor-in-chief, Kyle Mann, to talk about where he draws the line between making a joke and doing harm, and to understand what humor can reveal about American politics. Further reading: “Who Would Jesus Mock?”

Duration:00:23:35

The History of Tomorrow

11/5/2021
For decades, Silicon Valley leaders have been borrowing ideas from science fiction — from the metaverse to the latest tech gadgets. On this week’s show, hear why they might need to start reading their source material more closely. Also, why the midterm election results tell us so little about what’s coming next in American politics. And a forgotten behemoth of American literature gets a closer look. 1. Paul Waldman [@paulwaldman1], opinion columnist at the Washington Post and senior writer...

Duration:00:51:35

The Only Inevitability

11/3/2021
700,000. That’s the latest COVID death count to dominate a headline in the United States. Over the last 19 months, we’ve seen a steady trickle of these morbid milestones in the news. They are one way to measure, and try to understand, the COVID-19 pandemic. In the world of journalism, death is a metric that’s important. It indicates significance, newsworthiness, and tragedy. But death is also an inevitable part of the human experience. This is a fact that journalist Katie Engelhart...

Duration:00:37:39

A Rift In the Gun World

10/29/2021
This week, On the Media takes a deep dive into the "No Compromise" gun rights movement. Its members see the NRA as too amenable to gun control measures. Follow reporters Lisa Hagen and Chris Haxel on their journey to understand how 3 brothers used a network of Facebook pages to grow their following with some startling results. Part 1: A World Where The NRA Is Soft On Guns. Listen. Part 2: The Facebook Flock. Listen. Part 3: A One-Man Propaganda Band. Listen. No Compromise is hosted by...

Duration:00:52:05

When The Mob Gets a Podcast

10/28/2021
True crime is incredibly popular. Whether it's books, movies, television shows, or podcasts, stories that play to our deepest fears and most sensational imaginations command large audiences. The genre, when done poorly, can also aggravate our misconceptions and biases about crime. But true crime, at its best, offers something most of us can’t turn down, despite our better instincts—the chance to understand a master criminal mind. That’s what writer Rachel Corbett stumbled upon while working...

Duration:00:17:56

Plot Twist

10/22/2021
From boosters to breakthrough infections, pandemic vocabulary is still all over the news. On this week’s On the Media, why the terms we use to talk about the virus obscure as much as they reveal. And, why the history of medical progress is filled with so many twists and turns. Plus, why a preference for simple stories has made it so hard to keep track of the pandemic. 1. Katherine J. Wu [@KatherineJWu], staff writer at The Atlantic, on the slippery definitions of our pandemic vocabulary....

Duration:00:51:17

Colin Powell's Pivotal Moment That Wasn't

10/20/2021
Colin Powell, former Secretary of State, Joint Chiefs chairman, and omnipresence in American foreign policy for the past 20 years, died on Monday from complications from COVID-19. He was 84-years-old and been sick for years with multiple myeloma, a rare blood cancer. Colin Powell was many things to many people. A symbol of the American dream. The public voice — for a time — of the Iraq War. A so-called “RINO,” or Republican-in-name-only. A good soldier. Though widely remembered as a...

Duration:00:30:30

Against the Machine

10/15/2021
Have you been wondering exactly what it means to Build Back Better? On this week’s On the Media, hear why political coverage seems to address everything about Joe Biden’s bill--except what’s in it. Plus, find out if social media really does turn nice people into trolls. 1. Andrew Prokop [@awprokop], Senior Politics Correspondent at Vox, on the gap between political coverage of the Build Back Better Act, and what the bill actually says. Listen. 2. Michael Bang Petersen [@M_B_Petersen],...

Duration:00:51:56

Who Is The Bad Art Friend? Why Not Both?

10/13/2021
To watch the rise of viral content is always an interesting exercise. From "Charlie bit my finger" to the "Lulz That Broke Wall Street," the internet is capable of elevating any story, meme, joke, or idea through the ranks of digital fame. This week, we unpack one story, and one question, that took twitter by storm: "Who is the Bad Art Friend?". The Robert Kolker piece from The New York Times Magazine proved digital catnip, but why? Brooke sits down with Michael Hobbes, journalist and host...

Duration:00:27:17

The Big Reveal

10/8/2021
From a six hour service outage to a senate whistleblower hearing, the PR disasters keep mounting for Facebook. On this week’s show, hear how the tech giant might be following a well-worn pattern of decline. And, the so-called "Pandora Papers" reveal dirty financial secrets, dwarfing the Panama Papers in the size, scope, and reach. Plus, how a new data leak shows links between law enforcement and far-right militia groups. 1. Makena Kelly [@kellymakena], policy reporter for The Verge, on the...

Duration:00:52:21

It's Debt Ceiling Time Again!

10/6/2021
While Democrats fight amongst themselves over getting their legislative agenda passed, Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer is locked in his own battle with minority leader Mitch McConnell over raising the country’s debt ceiling. Democrats need ten Senate Republicans to join them in voting to raise the debt limit to avoid, as the Washington Post put it, “catapulting the country into an economic recession.” The Post also cited the potential for quote, “widespread financial havoc," while the...

Duration:00:10:34

Out of Sight

10/1/2021
Facebook and Instagram are harming young users, according to leaked research discussed in a Senate hearing this week. On this week’s On the Media, hear why lawmakers are chasing the white whale that is tech accountability. Also, how do we cover the tightly guarded, and complicated, news that comes from Guantanamo Bay? And, as the documentary industry booms, its ethics standards lag far behind. 1. Brandy Zadrozny [@BrandyZadrozny], NBC senior reporter, unpacks the evolving responsibilities...

Duration:00:53:58

The Big Screen version of Boom and Bust

9/29/2021
It was 13 years ago this month when news broke that the Wall Street investment firm Lehman Brothers collapsed, setting in motion the financial crisis that devastated the world’s economy. For all the misery the financial meltdown caused, Americans have never balked at opportunities to relive the crisis through hundreds of films, books and even plays. But while greedy investment bankers have become a staple archetype of recent movies like The Wolf of Wall Street, The Big Short, and Margin...

Duration:00:14:55