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Monday through Friday, Marketplace demystifies the digital economy in less than 10 minutes. We look past the hype and ask tough questions about an industry that’s constantly changing.

Monday through Friday, Marketplace demystifies the digital economy in less than 10 minutes. We look past the hype and ask tough questions about an industry that’s constantly changing.


Los Angeles, CA


Monday through Friday, Marketplace demystifies the digital economy in less than 10 minutes. We look past the hype and ask tough questions about an industry that’s constantly changing.




261 South Figueroa Street #200 Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 621-3500


How two cases headed to the Supreme Court could change the internet

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court announced it was putting off hearing a pair of highly anticipated cases that could fundamentally change social media as we know it The cases concern laws in Florida and Texas, pushed by conservatives in those states, which basically make it illegal for social media platforms to block or hide content – like say from a former president – even if the post violates the companies’ terms of service. Both laws have been blocked from taking effect while the rest...


Amazon is remaking small businesses in its own image, report says

Amazon might seem anathema to small business, but the fact is, third-party sellers account for the majority of the e-commerce giant’s sales. These sellers range from independent artisans and designers to opportunistic resellers of products from big-box stores. A new report from the nonprofit Data & Society examines how Amazon is helping, hurting and generally transforming the small business retail model. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Moira Weigel, the author of the report...


Carbon capture needs to scale up to make a dent in the climate crisis

A plant in Iceland recently became the first large-scale facility to remove carbon dioxide from the air on behalf of corporate clients paying to reduce their carbon footprints. The Climeworks operation uses a process called direct-air capture, or DAC. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Aniruddh Mohan, a postdoctoral fellow at the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment at Princeton University. He said the technology could be key to averting the worst of climate change.


It’s in Big Tech’s DNA to overhire in the boom and deflate in the downturn

The mea culpas from tech CEOs announcing massive job cuts have become a familiar refrain: “We hired too many people.” “We were much too optimistic.” “This did not play out the way I expected.” That’s a mashup of statements from Salesforce, Stripe and Meta. The tech industry continues to shed jobs: Google and Microsoft announced thousands of layoffs last week and Spotify this week. So, why did so many tech companies make the same mistake of overhiring? Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino...


How solar panels might help fix California’s drought

A California project that’s harnessing solar power to save water may seem a bit counterintuitive, given the dousing the state just received from a series of giant storms. But most of the state is still technically in a drought. That trend is expected to only intensify in the long term because of climate change, as warmer average temperatures increase evaporation. Take California’s vast system of open canals, which transport water across the state from reservoirs to agricultural lands and...


Text-to-image AI tools are taking the internet by storm. But is it art? Or the end of art?

Images created by artificial intelligence programs, like Stable Diffusion and DALL-E, are just about everywhere now, dazzling users with their ability to instantly create any image that can be dreamed up. The AI works by scraping billions of images from the internet, which are often created by artists who may not be thrilled that their life’s work is helping to build technology that could threaten their livelihoods. Steven Zapata, a designer, illustrator and art teacher in New York City, has...


Affordable-housing hopes are building around 3D printed homes

To make housing more affordable in the U.S., we need more of it. Millions of additional units, by most estimates. This shortage of housing has a range of complex causes, but the high cost of construction — which rose even further thanks to pandemic-driven labor and supply constraints — is definitely not helping. An idea from the tech world holds the potential to make the building process more efficient: 3D printing. Startups have been experimenting with the technology in large-scale...


Why AI is not coming for our jobs — yet

Now that so-called generative artificial intelligence models, such as DALL-E and ChatGPT, can create impressive visuals and formulate complex responses, will human artists, writers, radio hosts, and all sorts of creative and knowledge-based jobs, go extinct? Mark Finlayson, an associate professor of computer science at Florida International University, offered his perspective on this zillion-dollar question in a recent essay for The Conversation. Finlayson believes that these tools are...


Understanding the tech behind the gas vs. electric stove debate

Like the Rolling Stones vs. the Beatles, “Star Wars” vs. “Star Trek” or cats vs. dogs, the question of gas stoves vs. electric has somehow become a character-defining one. The discourse was ignited last week by a member of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Richard Trumka Jr., who suggested his agency was considering a ban on gas stoves. He has since stepped that back a bit. But the debate continues to simmer. Electric partisans say their ranges are healthier for people and the...


AI used for hiring and recruitment can be biased. But that’s changing.

Artificial intelligence is commonly used in automated recruitment programs. It helps narrow down large pools of applicants using algorithms to match job seekers to open positions. But there are growing concerns that this technology is disproportionately excluding certain groups, like women, people of color or those who don’t have college degrees, even when they’re perfectly qualified.


TikTok bans could cause headaches for government employees

TikTok is under a lot of scrutiny from federal, state and local governments. Congressional lawmakers recently banned the social media platform from most federal government devices. More than a dozen states, including New Hampshire, South Dakota and Texas, passed similar measures due to growing concerns about data security and privacy on the platform owned by Chinese company ByteDance. Marketplace’s Kimberly Adams spoke with Joshua Scacco, associate chair of the University of South Florida’s...


Louisiana law requiring proof of ID for porn site access has privacy advocates worried

Louisiana’s new law, HB 142, requires users in that state to prove they’re 18 or older before accessing sites that contain pornographic material. If a website’s content is a least one third porn, you have to show an ID. And the reason that’s possible is because Louisiana is one of the few states in the U.S. that allows residents to store government-issued ID digitally on their smartphone. This new law has many privacy advocates worried, and some researchers are warning about unplanned ripple...


How private images captured by a robot vacuum ended up online

Sure, robot vacuums are convenient and they make for great cat videos. But these devices have the potential to collect a lot of data from the private setting of our homes. Images of children’s faces, the layout of a house, even someone sitting on the toilet were all captured by iRobot vacuum test models in North America, Europe and Asia. Those photos found their way into a private Facebook group for Venezuelan gig workers, where they were then leaked to journalists at MIT Technology Review....


How new tech could put more EVs on the road

CES, formerly known as the Consumer Electronics Show, wrapped up Sunday in Las Vegas. There was a lot to process. The annual event showcased plenty of smart home technology, virtual reality gadgets, health trackers and even a tech friend for kids — a robot that recognizes facial expressions and moods. There was also a focus on energy, given the urgency of the climate crisis and the geopolitical events of the last year. Marketplace reporter Lily Jamali was at the convention looking into some...


Chaos at Twitter has brands questioning their association with the platform

Some two months after Elon Musk closed his $44 billion deal to acquire Twitter, we’ve seen information leaks, layoffs at the social media company, and that day everyone thought Twitter was going to shut down, but it didn’t. With reports of hate speech on the platform rising, many brands are eyeing Twitter cautiously, with some suspending their advertising altogether. But through the Twitter tumult, there’s a larger, deeper question brands are confronting: should they even be on Twitter in...


This year’s CES puts the smart in smart home

CES is underway in Las Vegas this week. The annual consumer electronics event attracts tech companies large and small, along with developers, journalists and policymakers. Jennifer Pattison Tuohy, who covers smart home technology for The Verge, is attending the convention. She spoke with Marketplace’s Kimberly Adams about the new gadgets and the announcements being made in the smart home realm.


What’s ahead for crypto in 2023?

2022 was not a great year for crypto. It started with a bang as crypto ads went mainstream in the Super Bowl. And then the year ended with an implosion. Crypto hacks piled on scandals and sliding valuations, one company fell and then another, culminating with the spectacular collapse of the FTX cryptocurrency exchange and its founder Sam Bankman-Fried, who is now under investigation for fraud. So will this crypto winter start to thaw in 2023 or head into deep freeze? Marketplace’s Meghan...


A clock for the next civilization — what could it say about the past and future?

Deep inside a mountain, a full day’s hike from any road, in a dry, deserted part of West Texas, a foundation funded by Jeff Bezos is building a giant clock that’s hundreds of feet tall. It’s been called the Millennium Clock, the 10,000 Year Clock and the Clock of the Long Now. Like the Pyramids, Stonehenge and the Colosseum, its makers hope it will outlast our civilization and tick for 10 millennia. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Alexander Rose, executive director of the Long...


How AI is disrupting the trucking sector

Trucking can be dangerous job – long, often tedious hours behind the wheel, the unpredictability of the weather and of course, other drivers. And yet, trucking is an essential part of supply chain. 72% of the nation’s freight gets from point A to point B in a truck, according to the American Trucking Associations. Most of those holiday gifts you might be enjoying right now got to you on a truck. So truck drivers are an essential part of our economy. The companies that hire and manage those...


How does copyright law affect the sale and distribution of NFTs? (rerun)

Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are basically digital certificates of ownership, a virtual claim that an image, GIF or even a song belongs to you. And while some artists were initially happy to jump into this new space, others have been surprised or furious to find that people, not themselves, beat them to it. Last year, several musical artists publicly complained after the website HitPiece temporarily listed NFTs for their songs or albums without the artists’ permission. But does selling...