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On the Media podcast

On the Media

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.

 

#120

Plot Twist

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] (https://twitter.com/KatherineJWu) ], staff writer at The Atlantic, on the slippery definitions of our pandemic vocabulary. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/pandemic-words-were-still-getting-wrong-on-the-media) 2. Dr. Paul Offit [ [@DrPaulOffit] (https://twitter.com/DrPaulOffit) ], professor of pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, on why medical progress always carries risk.  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/history-miracles-and-mistake-on-the-media) 3. OTM correspondent Micah Loewinger [ [@MicahLoewinger] (https://twitter.com/MicahLoewinger) ] speaks with Soren Wheeler [ [@SorenWheeler] (https://twitter.com/SorenWheeler) ] and Rachael Piltch-Loeb [ [@Rpiltchloeb] (https://twitter.com/Rpiltchloeb) ] about why the narrative arc of the COVID-19 pandemic has been deeply unsatisfying. With some help from Kurt Vonnegut. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/kurt-vonnegut-and-shape-pandemic) Music: In the Bath - Randy Newman Milestones - Bill Evans Trio Paperback Writer - Quartetto d'Archi Dell'orchestra Sinfonica di Giuseppe Verdi Quizas Quizas Quizas - Ramon Sole  Misterioso - Kronos Quartet Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered - Brad Mehldau Trio   ... Read more

22 Oct 2021

50 MINS

50:17

22 Oct 2021


#119

Colin Powell's Pivotal Moment That Wasn't

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] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/130304-the-good-soldier) . Though widely remembered as a barrier-breaking hero by folks across the aisle, in his death, as in life, there are those who are using Colin Powell as an opportunity for [scoring political points] (https://twitter.com/NikkiMcR/status/1450252233753378818) .  Looking back at the life of Colin Powell, it is worth recalling that he was once one of America's most popular public officials, polling favorably among  [85 percent] (https://news.gallup.com/poll/6886/powell-remains-most-popular-political-figure-america.aspx)  of Americans in a 2002 Gallup poll. But what Colin Powell is perhaps most remembered for is his [2003 presentation to the UN Security Council] (https://www.un.org/press/en/2003/sc7658.doc.htm)  explaining the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. A little over a year later, Powell went on [NBC's Meet the Press] (https://2001-2009.state.gov/secretary/former/powell/remarks/36100.htm)  and essentially retracted his assertion, saying it "turned out that the sourcing was inaccurate and wrong and in some cases deliberately misleading." Brooke speaks with [Fred Kaplan] (https://twitter.com/fmkaplan) , a veteran reporter on foreign policy and national security, long-time writer of [Slate’s "War Stories" column] (https://slate.com/news-and-politics/war-stories) , and even longer-time husband of Brooke, about the life and legacy of Colin Powell. ... Read more

20 Oct 2021

30 MINS

30:31

20 Oct 2021


#118

Against the Machine

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] (https://twitter.com/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.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/bidens-build-back-better-act-on-the-media) 2. Michael Bang Petersen [ [@M_B_Petersen] (https://twitter.com/M_B_Petersen) ], political science professor at Aarhus University, on the difference (or lack thereof) between on and offline behaviors, and how Facebook might not be affecting us in the ways we think. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/does-social-media-turn-nice-people-trolls-on-the-media) 3. Meghan O’Gieblyn, writer and author of God, Human, Animal, Machine, on the ever-deeper entwining of humanity and technology, and what it might mean for our future. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/promise-salvation-through-technology-on-the-media)    Music from this week's show: Passing Time - John Renbourn Clap Hands - Tom Waits Okami - Nicola Cruz Carmen Fantasy - Anderson and Roe Young at Heart - Brad Mehldau For the Creator - Richard Souther ... Read more

15 Oct 2021

50 MINS

50:34

15 Oct 2021


#117

Who Is The Bad Art Friend? Why Not Both?

To watch the rise of viral content is always an interesting exercise. From "Charlie bit my finger" to the " [Lulz That Broke Wall Street] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/episodes/did-lulz-break-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?] (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/05/magazine/dorland-v-larson.html) ".  The Robert Kolker piece from The New York Times Magazine proved digital catnip, but why? Brooke sits down with [Michael Hobbes] (https://twitter.com/RottenInDenmark) , journalist and host of the podcast [Maintenance Phase] (http://maintenancephase.com/) , to discuss [his review of the story] (https://rottenindenmark.org/2021/10/10/identifying-the-bad-art-friend-is-easy/) , the Twitter storm, and why we're even talking about all this in the first place.  ... Read more

13 Oct 2021

26 MINS

26:38

13 Oct 2021


#116

The Big Reveal

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] (https://twitter.com/kellymakena) ], policy reporter for The Verge, on the perils of focusing on politicians' flubs during tech regulation hearings. [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/mocking-politicians-regulating-tech-on-the-media) . 2. Kevin Roose [ [@kevinroose] (https://twitter.com/kevinroose) ], tech columnist for The New York Times, on the harbingers of Facebook's demise. [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/desperation-mode-facebooks-reign-on-the-media) . 3. Gerard Ryle [ [@RyleGerard] (https://twitter.com/RyleGerard) ], director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, on how the [Pandora Papers] (https://www.icij.org/investigations/pandora-papers/)  unmask hidden owners of offshore companies. Plus, what the papers might mean for the future of cooperative journalism. [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/pandora-papers-reveal-shadow-economy-on-the-media) . 4. OTM correspondent Micah Loewinger [ [@MicahLoewinger] (https://twitter.com/MicahLoewinger) ], on how he and Gothamist's [George Joseph] (https://gothamist.com/news/hack-oath-keepers-militia-group-includes-names-active-nypd-officers-de-blasio-launches-investigation)  uncovered evidence that active police officers are connected to the Oath Keepers, a far-right militia group. [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/how-hacked-records-point-oath-keepers-ties-police-departments) . Music from this week's show: Chicago Sunset  - Musselwhite Tilliboyo - Kronos Quartet Gormenghast  - John Zorn String Quartet No. 5 II Movement 2 -Phillip Glass - Kronos Quartet ... Read more

08 Oct 2021

50 MINS

50:16

08 Oct 2021


#115

It's Debt Ceiling Time Again!

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 New York Times noted widespread warnings of “global economic calamity”  If all of this sounds familiar, that's because... it is. For years, the media have treated the perennial debt ceiling debate like hurricane season. Is disaster heading to our shores? When will calamity strike? What's the projected damage? Often lost in the coverage is why we have to keep reliving this crisis in the first place. Zachary Karabell is host of the podcast “What Could Go Right” and president of River Twice Capital. He’s also the author of The Leading Indicators: A Short History of the Numbers That Rule Our World. Brooke spoke to him in 2017 about this very subject.  ... Read more

06 Oct 2021

09 MINS

09:43

06 Oct 2021


#114

Out of Sight

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] (https://twitter.com/BrandyZadrozny) ], NBC senior reporter, unpacks the evolving responsibilities of social media companies for our health.  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/what-social-media-doing-our-health) 2. Jess Bravin [ [@JessBravin] (https://twitter.com/JessBravin) ], Supreme Court reporter for The Wall Street Journal, and Michel Paradis [ [@MDParadis] (https://twitter.com/MDParadis) ], senior attorney for the Department of Defense, on the lasting difficulties of covering one of America's most notorious military prisons, Guantanamo Bay. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/struggle-cover-guantanamo-bay-on-the-media) 3. Muira McCammon [ [@muira_mccammon] (https://twitter.com/muira_mccammon) ], doctoral candidate at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communications, on what the library at Guantamo Bay can tell us about the place and the media's coverage. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/books-guantanamo-bay-on-the-media) 4. Patricia Aufderheide [ [@paufder] (https://twitter.com/paufder) ], University Professor of Communication Studies in the School of Communication at American University, on the tension between production and ethics in the world of documentaries. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/state-ethics-documentary-filmmaking-on-the-media) Music from this week's show: Nino Rota - Juliet of Spirits Nicola Cruz - Colibria Kronos - Flugufrelsarinn Vijay Iyer - Human Nature Merkabah - John Zorn Booker T and The MG's - Slim Jenkins Place Alex Wurman - Going Home for the First Time ... Read more

01 Oct 2021

51 MINS

51:53

01 Oct 2021


#113

The Big Screen version of Boom and Bust

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] (https://www.ft.com/content/937b0198-8917-11e7-bf50-e1c239b45787) ,  [books] (http://nymag.com/strategist/article/best-books-about-the-financial-crash.html)  and  [even plays] (https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/12/theater/the-lehman-trilogy-play-new-york-premiere.html) . But while greedy investment bankers have become a staple archetype of recent movies like The Wolf of Wall Street, The Big Short, and Margin Call, Hollywood hasn't always portrayed Wall Street with such cynicism. In 2018 Brooke spoke to  [Per Hansen] (https://www.cbs.dk/en/research/departments-and-centres/department-of-management-politics-and-philosophy/staff/phhmpp) , professor of business history at the Copenhagen Business School, about his  [study] (https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/D8B3773CF3E8E30A6BC0DEFBEBB4D388/S000768051800003Xa.pdf/making_sense_of_business_and_community_in_hollywood_films_19282016.pdf&sa=D&source=hangouts&ust=1537028121136000&usg=AFQjCNH9tngiBbz0IC1edH1MyARCK7Fg5w)  examining cinematic depictions of big business and financial institutions. Hansen sifted through 81 films to understand how America's volatile attitudes on capitalism have evolved through other periods of boom and bust. He and Brooke discussed how classics like Wall Street, It's a Wonderful Life, and The Apartment have reflected and actively shaped the way we feel about money. This segment is from our September 14th, 2018 episode,  [Doomed to Repeat] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/on-the-media-2018-09-14/) . ... Read more

29 Sep 2021

14 MINS

14:32

29 Sep 2021


#112

The Subversion Playbook

By now, we’re familiar with voter suppression tactics, from long voting lines to voter ID laws. On this week’s On the Media, hear how election subversion takes the anti-democratic playbook to the next level. Plus, how the Russian government is using bureaucracy to stifle elections — and the press.  1. Dan Hirschhorn [ [@Inky_Dan] (https://twitter.com/Inky_Dan) ], assistant managing editor at The Philadelphia Inquirer, on why his paper won't use the word "audit" to describe the wave of partisan "election reviews."  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/why-philadelphia-inquirer-isnt-calling-it-audit-on-the-media) 2. Rick Hasen, [ [@rickhasen] (https://twitter.com/rickhasen) ], professor of law and political science at the University of California Irvine, on why election subversion is such a dangerous threat to our democracy. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/imminent-threat-election-subversion-on-the-media) 3. Tanya Lokot [ [@tanyalokot] (https://twitter.com/tanyalokot) ], media scholar and associate professor at the Dublin City University School of Communications, on why Google and Apple caved to the Kremlin on fair election technology. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/what-removal-navalnys-smart-voting-app-means-democracy-around-world-on-the-media) 4. OTM producer Molly Schwartz [ [@mollyfication] (https://twitter.com/mollyfication) ] on the lives and trials of Russian journalists under siege, featuring: Sonya Groysman [ [@sonyagro] (https://www.instagram.com/sonyagro/?hl=en) ], Russian journalist and podcaster; Joshua Yaffa [ [@yaffaesque] (https://twitter.com/yaffaesque) ] Moscow correspondent for The New Yorker; Tikhon Dzyadko [ [@tikhondzyadko] (https://twitter.com/tikhondzyadko) ], editor-in-chief of TV Rain; and Alexey Kovalyov [ [@Alexey__Kovalev] (https://twitter.com/Alexey__Kovalev) ], investigations editor at the news outlet Meduza. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/24-words-plaguing-russian-journalists-on-the-media) Music from this week's show: Chicago Sunset - Charlie Musselwhite Time is Late ft. Joakim Johans Unnamed Track - Mark Henry Philips Unnamed Track - Mark Henry Philips Baba O'Rilеy - The Who From Russia With Love - Huma-Huma Дальше действовать будем мы (“We will continue to act”) - Kino    ... Read more

24 Sep 2021

50 MINS

50:08

24 Sep 2021


#111

From Birtherism to Election Theft

In their new book "Peril," Bob Woodward and Robert Costa released a previously unpublished memo by a man named John Eastman, who served as an attorney advising President Trump during the 2020 election. That memo outlined an anti-democratic six-step plan for Vice President Pence to overturn the election results — stealing the election in favor of Trump — by refusing to tally votes from states with "multiple slates of electors," throwing the final decision to the House of Representatives. It was presented to Pence by Trump and Eastman in the Oval Office during the days leading up to January 6th, and offers a chilling look at the lengths to which Trump was prepared to go in order to maintain power.  It also offers a new opportunity to examine the activities of John Eastman, who entered the spotlight in 2020 when he published an op-ed in Newsweek making the false claim that Kamala Harris was ineligible for the Vice Presidency. Back then, Brooke spoke with Slate’s  [Mark Joseph Stern] (https://twitter.com/mjs_DC?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor) , who described the  [origins of this birtherism falsehood] (https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/08/kamala-harris-birther-birthright-citizenship-claremont.html)  and how Eastman and his organization, the Claremont Institute, used the media to spread it. ... Read more

22 Sep 2021

14 MINS

14:31

22 Sep 2021


#110

Fire and Brimstone

Throughout the pandemic, religious rights advocates have protested some public health measures like bans on large gatherings. Now, some Americans are making the case for religious exemptions to President Biden's new workplace vaccine mandate. On this week’s On the Media, why religious protections are deliberately vague. Plus, hear how the current Supreme Court has been quietly bolstering the power of Christian interest groups. And, a look at climate coverage during storm season, and how the fossil fuel industry became so good at selling its own story. 1. Winnifred Sullivan [ [@WinniSullivan] (https://twitter.com/winnisullivan?lang=en) ], Indiana University Bloomington professor of law and religious studies, explains why the constitution doesn't define "religion." [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/constitution-religion-on-the-media) 2. Linda Greenhouse, writer and clinical lecturer at Yale Law School, on the Supreme Court's recent rulings on religious liberties. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/how-supreme-court-bolstering-power-religion-on-the-media) 3. Mark Hertsgaard [ [@markhertsgaard] (https://twitter.com/markhertsgaard) ], executive director of Covering Climate Now, on why the press should remind us of climate change's impact on so-called "natural disasters." [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/unnatural-disasters-on-the-media) 4. Amy Westervelt [ [@amywestervelt] (https://twitter.com/amywestervelt) ], climate writer and host of the podcast Drilled, on how fossil fuels companies advertised their way out of a public backlash. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/unnatural-disasters-on-the-media) Music from this week's show: In the Hall of the Mountain King - Kevin MacLeod  Smells like Teen Spirit - The Bad Plus  Equinox - John Coltrane Sacred Oracle - Bill Frisell Roary’s Waltz - John Zorn Cops or Criminals - The Departed Soundtrack ... Read more

17 Sep 2021

49 MINS

49:45

17 Sep 2021


#109

The Trial of Elizabeth Holmes

In 2014, Fortune magazine ran a cover story featuring Elizabeth Holmes: a blonde woman wearing a black turtleneck, staring deadpan at the camera, with the headline, “ [This CEO is out for blood] (http://fortune.com/2014/06/12/theranos-blood-holmes/) .” A decade earlier, Holmes had founded Theranos, a company promising to “revolutionize” the blood testing industry, initially using a microfluidics approach — moving from deep vein draws to a single drop of blood. It promised easier, cheaper, more accessible lab tests — and a revolutionized healthcare experience. But it turns out that all those lofty promises were empty. There was no revolutionary new way to test blood. And now, years later, Holmes is being charged with 10 counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Two weeks into the trial, we're re-airing a conversation from 2018 between Brooke and  [John Carreyrou] (https://twitter.com/JohnCarreyrou?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor) , host of the narrative podcast  [Bad Blood: The Final Chapter] (https://www.sonymusic.com/sonymusic/bad-blood-the-final-chapter-new-podcast-john-carreyrou-premieres-ahead-of-elizabeth-holmes-criminal-trial/)  and the investigative journalist who exposed Holmes's alleged fraud. ... Read more

15 Sep 2021

18 MINS

18:35

15 Sep 2021


#108

Aftershocks

Twenty years after the Twin Towers came down, we’re still wrestling over how to make sense of what happened. On this week’s On the Media, how the conspiracies birthed in the aftermath of 9/11 set the stage for the paranoia to come. Plus, how Afghanistan’s thriving new media scene hopes to survive Taliban rule. And, how Ivermectin became politicized. 1. Tolo founder Saad Mohseni [ [@saadmohseni] (http://www.wnycstudios.org/@saadmohseni) ] on the mounting threat to journalism in Afghanistan. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/afghanistans-journalists-taliban-on-the-media) 2. NYTimes television critic James Poniewozik [ [@poniewozik] (https://twitter.com/poniewozik) ] on the documentary styles used to remember 9/11. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/911-lens-on-the-media) 3. OTM's Micah Loewinger [ [@MicahLoewinger] (https://twitter.com/MicahLoewinger) ] reports on the legacy of Loose Change. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/911-broke-our-brains-on-the-media) 4. Mother Jones senior editor Kiera Butler [ [@kieraevebutler] (https://twitter.com/kieraevebutler?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor) ] on how Ivermectin became so politicized. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/how-ivermectin-became-politicized-on-the-media)   ... Read more

10 Sep 2021

50 MINS

50:31

10 Sep 2021


#107

Hey Everyone, Meet Sacha Pfeiffer!

By way of introduction to the person who will be sitting in for Brooke for a few weeks, we are revisiting our interview about " [Spotlight] (http://spotlightthefilm.com/) ." The 2015 movie depicts the Boston Globe's  [Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation] (http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/movies/spotlight-movie)  that uncovered the systemic sexual abuse and widespread cover up in the Catholic church. Brooke spoke with Walter Robinson, who headed the investigation and is played by Michael Keaton in the film, and Sacha Pfeiffer, who was one of the four reporters on the team and is played by Rachel McAdams and who is.....drumroll, going to guest-host OTM! You're in safe hands, listeners.  ... Read more

08 Sep 2021

16 MINS

16:16

08 Sep 2021


#106

Organizing Chaos

A debate has been raging among the librarians of the world, and it's all about order. The Dewey Decimal System became our way of managing information long ago, but it may be time to reassess. Plus, how one man’s obsession with ordering the natural world took a very dark turn. 1. Lulu Miller [ [@lmillernpr] (https://twitter.com/lmillernpr) ], author of  [Why Fish Don't Exist] (https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/Why-Fish-Dont-Exist/Lulu-Miller/9781501160271)  and co-host of WNYC's Radiolab, charts the quest of taxonomist David Starr Jordan to categorize the world. [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/one-mans-dark-obsession-ordering-world-on-the-media) 2. On the Media producer Molly Scwartz [ [@mollyfication] (https://twitter.com/mollyfication) ] takes a deep dive into one imposition of human order so commonplace most of us never notice: the library. But the famed Dewey Decimal System is not an unbiased ordering machine. Featuring: Jess deCourcy Hinds [ [@HindsJess] (https://twitter.com/HindsJess) ] librarian at the Bard High School, Early College library in Queens, New York, [Wayne A. Wiegand] (https://twitter.com/wayneawiegand) a library historian and author of Irrepressible Reformer: A Biography of Melvil Dewey, [Caroline Saccucci] (https://twitter.com/ces12121) , the former Dewey Program Manager at the Library of Congress, Emily Drabinski [ [@edrabinski] (https://twitter.com/edrabinski) ] interim chief librarian of the Mina Rees Library at CUNY, and Dartmouth librarian Jill Baron [ [@jillebaron] (https://twitter.com/jillebaron) ] from the documentary [Change the Subject] (https://twitter.com/ChangeTheSubjct) .  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/bias-library-on-the-media) Music from this week's show: Nocturne For Piano in B flat minor- Frédéric Chopin  Il Casanova di Federico Fellini Tomorrow Never Knows - Quartetto D’archi dell Orchestra Sinfonica Songs of War - US Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps  The Dewey Decimal System - Jason Munday ... Read more

03 Sep 2021

49 MINS

49:36

03 Sep 2021


#105

Biased Algorithms, Biased World

Algorithms are everywhere, making crucial decisions at almost every juncture of our lives. But, while we may believe in the objectivity of these mathematical models, they're made from and produce far more bias than we think. Mathematician and former Wall Street quant,  [Cathy O'Neil] (https://twitter.com/mathbabedotorg?lang=en)  wants us to question our unexamined faith in predictive algorithms. Her book, Weapons of Math Destruction, calls out an urgent need to investigate these black box constructions that govern so much of our lives, from going to college and getting a job, to online advertising and criminal sentencing. She and Brooke discuss the science behind predictive algorithms and how they can go terribly wrong. This segment originally aired on our November 22, 2019 program,  [The Disagreement is the Point] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/episodes/on-the-media-2019-11-22) . ... Read more

01 Sep 2021

16 MINS

16:06

01 Sep 2021


#104

Constitutionally Speaking

“The right to throw a punch ends at the tip of someone’s nose.” It’s the idea that underlies American liberties — but does it still fit in 2021? We look back at our country’s radical — and radically inconsistent — tradition of free speech. Plus, a prophetic philosopher predicts America 75 years after Trump. 1. Andrew Marantz [ [@andrewmarantz] (https://twitter.com/andrewmarantz) ], author of Anti-Social: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation — and our guest host for this hour — explains what he sees as the problem with free speech absolutism.  [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/against-free-speech-absolutism-on-the-media) .  2.  [John Powell] (https://www.law.berkeley.edu/our-faculty/faculty-profiles/john-powell/)  [ [@profjohnapowell] (https://twitter.com/profjohnapowell?lang=en) ], law professor at UC Berkeley, P.E. Moskowitz [ [@_pem_pem] (https://twitter.com/_pem_pem) ], author of The Case Against Free Speech: The First Amendment, Fascism, and the Future of Dissent, and Susan Benesch [ [@SusanBenesch] (https://twitter.com/SusanBenesch) ], Director of the Dangerous Speech Project, on our complicated legal right to speak.  [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/free-speech-radical-inconsistent-on-the-media) .  3. Andrew and Brooke discuss the philosopher Richard Rorty, whose work can teach us much about where the present approach to speech might take us, as a nation.  [Listen] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/70-years-after-trump-on-the-media) .  Music from this week's show: Jeopardy: Think Music - Malcolm Hamilton Fallen Leaves - Marcos Ciscar Time is Late - Marcos Ciscar   ... Read more

27 Aug 2021

50 MINS

50:08

27 Aug 2021


#103

A New First Amendment

Nearly six decades ago, the Supreme Court made a decision in the case New York Times v. Sullivan that would forever alter the way journalists practiced journalism. Brooke spoke with [Andrew Cohen] (https://twitter.com/JustADCohen) , senior editor at The Marshall Project and fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice, about  [the decision's impact on the First Amendment] (http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/03/today-is-the-50th-anniversary-of-the-re-birth-of-the-first-amendment/284311/) . Supreme Court audio courtesy of  [Oyez®] (http://www.oyez.org/) , a multimedia judicial archive at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. ... Read more

25 Aug 2021

10 MINS

10:39

25 Aug 2021


#102

Maligned Women

Cries to free Britney Spears from her conservatorship this summer have prompted a reevaluation of how the pop star was covered by the press decades ago. This week, On the Media looks at how the maligned women of the 90s and 2000s help us understand our media — and ourselves.  1. Joshua Rofé [ [@joshua_rofe] (https://twitter.com/joshua_rofe?lang=en) ], filmmaker, and Lorena Gallo (FKA Lorena Bobbitt) on the documentary "Lorena."  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/revisiting-lorena-on-the-media) 2. Sarah Marshall [ [@Remember_Sarah] (https://twitter.com/Remember_Sarah) ] and Michael Hobbes [ [@RottenInDenmark] (https://twitter.com/RottenInDenmark) ], hosts of the You're Wrong About podcast, on how coverage of maligned women in the 1990s fueled lasting and harmful myths.  [Listen.] (https://www.wnycstudios.org/podcasts/otm/segments/you-were-wrong-about-her-on-the-media) Music: Okami — Nicola Cruz River Man — Brad Mehldaw Trio Fellini’s Waltz — Nino Rota La Vie En Rose — Toots Thielemans   ... Read more

20 Aug 2021

50 MINS

50:17

20 Aug 2021


#101

How Radio Makes Female Voices Sound Shrill

"Shrill" popped back up in the national lexicon in the coverage of Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential bid, and again, in a 2020 race filled with female candidates. "This spike in usage is hardly a revelation," writes University of Florida professor Tina Tallon, in  [a piece] (https://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/a-century-of-shrill-how-bias-in-technology-has-hurt-womens-voices)  for The New Yorker. "Women who speak publicly and challenge authority have long been dismissed as 'shrill' or 'grating.'" But these slurs are not just the product of age-old misogynistic stereotypes. Biases against female voices were perniciously exacerbated by the broadcast technology that powers radio and audio recording technology. They're designed to thin higher frequency voices and enrich lower ones. In this interview from 2019, she and Brooke revisit the proliferation of radio in the 1920's and 1930's, when our ears were trained to prefer listening to men talk, and reflect on how societal gender standards have been shaped since. ... Read more

18 Aug 2021

16 MINS

16:00

18 Aug 2021