Winamp Logo
What Next: TBD | Tech, power, and the future Cover
What Next: TBD | Tech, power, and the future Profile

What Next: TBD | Tech, power, and the future

English, Technology, 1 season, 469 episodes, 2 days, 17 hours, 43 minutes
About
Every Friday, Slate’s popular daily news podcast What Next brings you TBD, a clear-eyed look into the future. From fake news to fake meat, algorithms to augmented reality, Lizzie O’Leary is your guide to the tech industry and the world it’s creating for us to live in.
Episode Artwork

Fee’d Up: A Musician’s Take on Ticketmaster

It’s hard to imagine music fans mourning a break-up of Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation, as a Department of Justice lawsuit requests. But even with this monopolistic middleman out of the way, touring musicians still seem destined to struggle financially. Guest: Laura Jane Grace, musician Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Patrick Fort, and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/9/202423 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Secret Semiconductor War

How well is the Biden administration coaxing semiconductor companies to build their chips in the United States? Compared to Taiwan, South Korea, Japan…or even mainland China, things are just okay. Guest: Asa Fitch, reporter for the Wall Street Journal, covering the semiconductor industry. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/7/202423 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

Would You Buy Poop On the Internet?

“Fecal microbial transplants” treat someone’s unhealthy gut with poop from someone else’s healthy gut, and proponents of FMT claim it can help treat everything from IBS to autism. But if your doctor isn’t ready to fill you up with someone else’s poop, the internet will happily oblige.  Guest:  Luke Winkie, Slate staff writer who published “The Poop Broker.” Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/2/202423 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

He’s Suing Big Tech Over Uvalde

His law firm won a $73 million dollar settlement against Remington on behalf of nine Sandy Hook families. Now he’s filing a lawsuit against the gunmaker Daniel Defense, the video game company Activision, and Instagram’s parent company, Meta, on behalf of families in Uvalde. Guest: Josh Koskoff, attorney Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Patrick Fort, and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/31/202426 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Hospitals Keep Getting Hacked

Last year saw a record number of healthcare hacks with more than 700 separate incidents. And with a subsidiary of United Healthcare forking over a $22 billion ransom this year, the problem isn’t going away. With so much sensitive personal information on file, why aren’t hospitals and their ilk better prepared? Guest:  Dina Carlisle, president of the local nurses union, OPEIU 40 in Michigan. Justin Sherman, CEO of Global Cyber Strategies. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/26/202423 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

Scarlett Johansson vs OpenAI

When OpenAI showed a demo for the latest version of ChatGPT —the one that you can chat with, you know, with your voice—one of the voices sounded eerily familiar. And instead of a victory lap, it was a reminder of all of the implications for intellectual property and one’s own basic human likeness that this technology carries with it. Guest: Sigal Samuel, senior reporter for Vox's Future Perfect and co-host of the Future Perfect podcast. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/24/202426 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Dark Side of GoFundMe

In theory, crowdfunding sites offer an opportunity for anyone to give to any cause, including, say, strangers facing huge medical bills. In practice, crowdfunding suffers from many of the same inequities that led to someone needing to crowdfund to begin with. Guest: Nora Kenworthy, author of Crowded Out: The True Costs of Crowdfunding Healthcare, associate professor at the University of Washington, Bothell. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/19/202432 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Too Stonks Too Furious

The 2021 subreddit-coordinated effort to raise the price of Gamestop stock was, in some ways, a proof of concept: the little guy can get into the market and make some noise. Because even though that “meme stock” rose and fell, the idea of the meme stock went has changed the way our stock market works. Guest: Alex Kirshner, contributing writer for Slate. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/17/202424 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Would You Choose Your Child’s Sex?

The ability to choose the sex of your child through IVF is banned in most of the world. In America, however, parents can—and do—for a price. Guest: Emi Nietfeld, writer and software engineer, author of “The Parents Who Want Daughters—and Daughters Only” for Slate. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/12/202428 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

Meet the Trump Campaign’s A.I. Guy

You might not know Brad Parscale by name, but you know his work: he was the digital campaign operative behind Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential victory. This election cycle, he’s back—and advising conservatives on how to utilize A.I. in their campaigns.  Guest: Garance Burke, global investigative journalist for the Associated Press. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Patrick Fort, Cheyna Roth and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/10/202421 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can California Save Journalism?

The California Journalism Preservation Act would make companies like Google and Meta pay publishers for the news content appearing in their feeds and search results—and force news organizations to spend that money on their journalists. How have similar laws worked in Canada and Australia? And could it solve journalism’s on-going revenue problem? Guest: Matt Pearce, former LA Times journalist, the president of Media Guild of the West. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/5/202423 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

Bird Flu—It’s in Milk?

Bird flu isn’t new, you may even remember past outbreaks. But showing up in milk?  Is America ready if it leaps to spreading among humans? Guest: Katelyn Jetelina, epidemiologist, senior advisor to the CDC  Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/3/202425 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Failures of ‘Organic’ Farming

There are regulations regarding how farm animals are transported, how they’re auctioned, how they’re slaughtered—but when they’re living on the farm? That’s where things get cloudy.  Guest: Annie Lowrey, journalist writing on politics and economic policy for The Atlantic. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Patrick Fort, and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/28/202427 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

So ... Is TikTok Banned?

The TikTok ban that has been floating around Washington since the last administration has been signed into law. What does that mean for users, creators and the court battles ahead? Guest:  Louise Matsakis, reporter covering tech and China. Dillon White, TikToker under the handle @dadchats Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/26/202422 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Internet Archive Endangered

From the Wayback Machine to the mass-digitization of the history of Aruba, the Internet Archive is a non-profit doing valuable work. But some of its other projects—a pandemic-era lending library and the ongoing digitalization of 78 rpm records—have led to lawsuits now threatening the future of this repository of the past.  Guest: Kate Knibbs, senior writer at Wired. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/21/202423 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

What’s Driving Tesla’s Layoffs?

Tesla’s market cap has dropped. The company had its biggest round of layoffs ever. The Cybertruck doesn’t seem to be taking off. And Elon’s posting through it. Is Tesla in serious trouble? Guest: Dana Hull, Bloomberg reporter and contributor to the podcast Elon, Inc.   Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/19/202423 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is America Ready for Legal Psychedelics?

How the semi-legalization of marijuana has drawn a road map for legalizing psychedelics—and also provided a list of pitfalls to be avoided.  Guest: Jane C. Hu, science journalist and author of the newsletter The Microdose. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/14/202426 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

Does Google Suck Now?

Why lately our search engines just don’t seem to deliver results.  Guest: Jason Koebler, cofounder of 404 Media and co-host of the 404 Media Podcast.  Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/12/202426 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

America Needs More Power

The demand for electricity is surging in the U.S. With increasing amounts of power going towards artificial intelligence, manufacturing and electric vehicles, can the grid keep up? Guest: Evan Halper, business reporter covering the energy transition for the Washington Post Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/7/202429 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

Truth Social’s Rocky Week

Donald Trump got a huge financial boost when Truth Social went public last week—or did he? Guest: Nitish Pahwa, associate writer on business and tech for Slate. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/5/202427 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Psychological Toll of Mars

From science fiction writers to American presidents to Elon Musk, everyone’s eager to send people to Mars. But, even if you could nail the physical aspects, are Earthlings cut out for life on Mars mentally?  Guest: Nathaniel Rich, contributing writer for New York Times magazine.  Kate Greene, author and poet Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/31/202424 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Boeing Pull Out of This Tailspin?

How supply chains, the pandemic, and a steady stream of Wall Street money led to a crisis at Boeing. Guest: Jon Ostrower, editor-in-chief of the website the Air Current. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/29/202430 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Next Round of the Union Fight

After organized-labor victories at Amazon, with automakers, and in Hollywood, big corporations are striking back by, among other things, suing the National Labor Relations Board.   Guest: Noam Scheiber, reporter for the New York Times covering working and workers. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/24/202421 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

Reddit’s IPO Gamble

Despite the blackouts, moderator revolts, and long string of controversies, Reddit remains an active, healthy website. As the site goes public this week, can it remain that way? Guest: Priya Anand, Bloomberg News tech reporter. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/22/202427 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Private Equity Gets in to Health Care

Private equity firms have been buying up doctors’ offices and hospitals around the country. But if profits are the primary goal, what happens to the cost and quality of healthcare for patients? Guest: Gretchen Morgenson, senior financial reporter for the NBC News Investigative Unit and co-author of “These Are the Plunderers: How Private Equity Runs—and Wrecks—America”  Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Patrick Fort, and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/17/202429 minutes, 34 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is TikTok Cooked This Time?

TikTok’s connection to the Chinese government has been a Washington talking point since the Trump administration, but earlier this month lawmakers in the House introduced a bill requiring the app’s parent company to either divest the company into American hands—or be banned. Guest: Emily Baker-White, technology reporter and senior writer at Forbes. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/15/202426 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Instagram’s Pedophile Problem

As the debate around child safety online rages on, an investigation by The New York Times found a seedy world of pedophiles interacting with child influencer accounts, often run by their parents, on Instagram.  Guest: Jennifer Valentino-DeVries, investigative reporter at the New York Times.  Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and across all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/10/202433 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why TikTok Went Silent

Thousands of songs have disappeared from TikTok in recent months as music giant Universal Music Group, or UMG, has pulled its catalog from the app. UMG claims that TikTok is a music platform, and that TikTok needs to pay more to license its music. TikTok claims they're a marketing platform that helps labels promote their artists. But while the two sides argue over contract negotiations for licensing music on the video platform, many artists are left scrambling. Guest: Ethan Millman, staff writer at Rolling Stone covering the music industry. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and across all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/8/202422 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

Google’s Scam Obituary Problem

Why scam obituaries are edging out earnest ones, with the help of artificial intelligence and an adept Google game. Guest: Mia Sato, reporter for The Verge. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and across all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/3/202428 minutes, 47 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Supreme Court Takes on Content Moderation

Is it censorship for social media platforms to moderate their content, or is censorship when the state tells social media platforms how to moderate their content?  Guest: Mark Joseph Stern, Slate writer on courts and the law.  Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/1/202429 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Alabama’s IVF Mess

Fertility doctors and their patients trying to conceive via in vitro fertilization (IVF) were stopped in their tracks this week, as the Alabama Supreme Court declared that embryos have the same rights as people. The decision has left doctors wondering if they can be sued for carrying out standard IVF procedures, and experts worry the ruling could have ramifications for IVF around the country.  Guest: Dr. Elizabeth Constance, reproductive endocrinology and infertility specialist in Omaha, Nebraska. Want more What Next TBD? Subscribe to Slate Plus to access ad-free listening to the whole What Next family and across all your favorite Slate podcasts. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts by clicking “Try Free” at the top of our show page. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to get access wherever you listen. Check out Compiler here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/25/202428 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Coasts are Sinking

Studies have found that, in tiny increments, America’s East Coast is sinking into the ground thanks to climate change. Can a new approach to urban planning mitigate the effect? Guest: Matt Simon, senior staff writer at Wired. You can read Matt’s reporting here. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/23/202420 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Apple Vision Pro: The Ultimate Surveillance Device?

Apple Vision Pro goggles might be a crime against fashion but with the amount of data they can collect—both on the world around the user and on the users themselves—they have the potential to invade privacy right down to where you’re looking and for how long.  Guest: Geoffrey Fowler, Washington Post tech columnist If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Check out Compiler here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/18/202428 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Warfare Enters the A.I. Era

The war in Ukraine reordered the priorities of the country’s growing tech sector, and has become a place for foreign companies to test out new tools with less regulation or scrutiny. Guests: Vera Bergengruen, senior correspondent at Time If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/16/202428 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

Breaking Up with Dating Apps

For a while, it seemed like the only place to meet potential partners was through an app—Tinder, Hinge, Bumble, etc. But as the apps are trying to monetize their matchmaking—and some users now with a whole decade of striking out under their belts—old-fashioned meet-cutes-in-bars or, say, debutante balls look more and more appealing. Guests:  Katherine Lindsay, culture writer and cofounder of Embedded Rachael Stein, dating-app spelunker  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/11/202425 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

The NFL’s Concussion Settlement Farce

The NFL's concussion settlement was meant to provide financial support and medical help for players who developed traumatic brain injuries from the sport. So why are so many players denied the help they need? Guest: Will Hobson, sports reporter for the Washington Post. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/9/202429 minutes, 34 seconds
Episode Artwork

Streaming Is Cable Now

The number of TV streaming services is going up—and so is the cost and so are the number of ads. Cordcutters are finding themselves back to cable prices and inconveniences. And these changes don’t just impact the TV viewing experience - they impact the types of shows that get made in the first place.  Guest: Alex Cranz, managing editor at the Verge.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/4/202430 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Taylor Swift Deepfake Saga

For all the promise of the technology, one use-case for artificial intelligence reared its ugly head last week: non-consensual pornographic images. As millions of users saw abusive A.I. generated images of Taylor Swift proliferate across X, the pitfalls of this technology became clear.  Guest: Emanuel Maiberg, journalist and co-founder of 404 Media If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Check out Compiler here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/2/202426 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Is Everybody Sick?

Are we still paying off our pandemic-induced “immunity debt,” or is there another reason that it feels like we’re all sniffling and coughing and just feeling sick? Guest: Keren Landman, senior health reporter at Vox If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/28/202423 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

Are You Ready for the A.I. Election?

In the days leading up to the New Hampshire primary, voters received a robocall purportedly from Joe Biden. Authorities have now determined the call was likely A.I.-generated.  In the era of A.I., how can voters tell what’s real and what’s not? And will the general election be thrown into chaos by artificial intelligence-created disinformation?  Guest: Makena Kelly, senior writer at Wired covering politics and technology If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Podcast production by Evan Campbell, Paige Osburn and Anna Phillips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/26/202426 minutes, 1 second
Episode Artwork

Have Algorithms Ruined Our Culture?

How much of our lives—our tastes, preferences and choices—have been fed to us through an interlocking, impersonal network of algorithms?  Guest: Kyle Chayka, staff writer at the New Yorker and author of Filterworld: How Algorithms Flattened Culture. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/21/202436 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Great British Library Hack

When a cyberattack knocked the British Library out of commission in October of last year, a nation's researchers, scholars, students, and bookworms were left high and dry. Months later, the library is starting to come back online in limited capacity, but the attack has laid bare just how fragile our digital systems are.  Guest: Sam Knight, staff writer at the New Yorker If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/19/202427 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Your Car Tracking You?

Covered in cameras, full of microphones, and always eager to use location data, our vehicles are “smartphones on wheels”—and privacy nightmares. Guest: Kashmir Hill, technology and privacy reporter for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/14/202422 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

Boeing’s Max Mess

Shortly after take off from Portland, OR, the plug exit on a Boeing 737 Max 9 jet blew out – causing an uncontrolled decompression of the plane. Now, accident investigators are hard at work, trying to determine what happened in what's the latest catastrophe for the respected commercial airplane provider. Guest: Jon Ostrower, Editor-in-chief of The Air Current If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/12/202435 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tesla's Cybertruck Problem

What the Cybertruck says about safety, regulation, and the degree to which Tesla is beholden to the whims of Elon Musk.  Guest: Edward Niedermeyer, author of Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/7/202424 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why the New York Times Sued OpenAI

If A.I. and chatbots are the next wave of innovation, then the New York Times and other media organizations are determined to get paid this time.   Guest: Megan Morrone, technology editor for the Axios AI+ newsletter If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/5/202428 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

Who’s Afraid of A.I.? | 2023 In Review

While the What Next: TBD team spends some time with their families during the holidays, we revisit some of 2023’s biggest, strangest, and best stories. Regularly scheduled programming resumes in January. Artificial intelligence—as it already exists today—is drawing from huge troves of surveillance data and is rife with the biases built into the algorithm, in service of the huge corporations that develop and maintain the systems. The fight for the future doesn’t look like war with Skynet; it’s happening right now on the lines of the Writer’s Guild strike.  Guests:  Meredith Whittaker, president of the Signal Foundation, co-founder of the AI Now Institute at NYU Originally aired May 12th, 2023 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/31/202333 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

America’s Killer Car Problem | 2023 In Review

While the What Next: TBD team spends some time with their families during the holidays, we revisit some of 2023’s biggest, strangest, and best stories. Regularly scheduled programming resumes in January. Pedestrian deaths in America have been rising for the last decade, while dropping in Europe and Japan. What makes the U.S. so dangerous for pedestrians? Guest: Jessie Singer, author of There Are No Accidents: The Deadly Rise of Injury and Disaster―Who Profits and Who Pays the Price.  Originally aired July 16th, 2023. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/29/202336 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

Stephen King Is Just as Confused About Blue Checks as You Are | 2023 In Review

While the What Next: TBD team spends some time with their families during the holidays, we revisit some of 2023’s biggest, strangest, and best stories. Regularly scheduled programming resumes in January. Twitter’s “blue check” verification went from something you applied for, to something you could pay for, to something you had to pay for…to something that many celebrities wouldn’t even accept for free. Master of horror Stephen King told us he wouldn’t pay for a blue check, but he’s not going to fight it either—he just doesn’t really understand what’s going on. Does anyone at Twitter understand? Guests:  Alex Heath, deputy editor of The Verge Jon Favreau, co-founder of Crooked Media, speechwriter for President Barack Obama Stephen King, author Originally aired April 28th, 2023. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/24/202334 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Hybrid Cars Save Us?

Without infrastructure to support all-electric vehicles, consumers have increasingly embraced the hybrid. The lower emissions are good—but are they slowing down our transition into an electric future?  Guest: Patrick George, editor-in-chief of InsideEVs.com, contributor to The Atlantic and The Verge. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/22/202327 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Case Against CLEAR

Going through airport security is a legal requirement. Is it fair for a private company to interject itself in that process—and cut to the front of the line? Guest: David Zipper, visiting Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School, focused on mobility, cities and technology. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/17/202325 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Shein’s Newest Offering? An IPO

Fast-fashion titan Shein is preparing for its initial public offering, even as questions of sustainability and labor practices linger.  Guest: Jordyn Holman, business reporter covering the retail industry and consumerism for The New York Times If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/15/202327 minutes, 38 seconds
Episode Artwork

Musk's War on Free Speech

Elon Musk is suing Media Matters for reporting that advertisers’ content was showing up right next to posts from newly reinstated Nazis on X, something X’s CEO said was impossible. Media Matters is based in D.C, and X is headquartered in California - so why did Musk choose to file the suit in Texas? Guest: Liz Dye, columnist at Above the Law, Substacks as Law and Chaos Pod, co-hosts the podcast Opening Arguments. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/10/202331 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Spotify Unwrapped

Is Spotify’s 2023—ending with layoffs and cancelling critically acclaimed original podcasts—a sign of trouble at the streaming giant, or an adjustment to expectations that’s setting them up for a brighter future? Guest: Ashley Carman, Bloomberg reporter who covers Spotfiy   If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/8/202327 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

They See You When You’re Shopping

Though navigating the internet involves spraying your data pretty indiscriminately, you actually have more control over it than you think—it’s just a pain to rein it in.  Guest: Geoffrey Fowler, Washington Post tech columnist. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/3/202331 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Moral War for A.I.

Artificial intelligence seems predestined to become a bigger part of our lives. To what extent is the A.I. push being led by Sam Altman and the OpenAI team a cause for concern?  Guest: Karen Hao, journalist, data scientist and contributing writer for the Atlantic. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/1/202334 minutes, 29 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Race (Back) to the Moon

The first steps on the moon were in the name of “all mankind.” But with more countries—and the private sector—competing to not only return, but to tap into the moon’s resources, we’re going to need some ground rules. Guest: Chris Davenport reports on NASA and the space industry at the Washington Post. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/26/202324 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

Where Scams Are Born

An app for open money laundering, a corridor of massive casinos in the middle of nowhere, and the global scamdemic.  Guest: Cezary Podkul, reporter for Propublica If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/24/202329 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside OpenAI's Implosion

OpenAI was the hottest startup in Silicon Valley off the success of ChatGPT. Then, the board fired Sam Altman.  Guest: Mike Isaac, technology reporter at the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/21/202331 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Bedbugs Are Back, Baby!

The bedbug break-out during Paris fashion week this fall was obviously horrifying, but the bad news doesn’t stop there. Bedbugs are on the rise—and on the move. Guest: Benji Jones, senior environmental reporter at Vox. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/19/202325 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Deepfake Porn Infected a School

Girls at a New Jersey high school were early victims of a novel and growing problem: their images were taken from social media without consent to create “deep-fake pornography.”  Guest: Julie Jargon, Wall Street Journal family and tech columnist. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/17/202324 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will A.I. Take My Job?

A review website became suddenly flush with new bylines, right as the newsroom was negotiating with management. But information on their new contributors was hard to find—were they people at all, or was this the first clumsy incursion of A.I. into their newsroom? Guest: Will Sommer, Washington Post media reporter If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/12/202321 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tesla vs. the Swedes

In late October, Tesla mechanics in Sweden began to strike after the company refused to sign a collective agreement. This week, the country's other major unions joined in the fight as well.  Can Sweden’s robust labor culture force Tesla to make concessions?  Guest: Melissa Eddy, Berlin correspondent for the New York Times.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/10/202326 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sam Bankman-Fraud

Sam Bankman-Fried was found guilty on seven charges of wire fraud, conspiracy and money laundering and is facing a 110-year sentence.  Cryptocurrency, itself, has lost an ambassador, a lot of value, and quite a bit of credibility.  Guest: Nitish Pahwa, associate business and tech writer covering the trial for Slate. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/4/202330 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Biden Goes After AI

Biden’s executive order on A.I. indicates his administration is taking it seriously. Does it go far enough?  Guest: Cecilia Kang, covering technology and policy for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/3/202331 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

SBF Takes the Stand

The man at the center of it all takes the stand in his own defense—but what’s left to say? Guest: Nitish Pahwa, associate business and tech writer covering the trial for Slate. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/28/202325 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Self-Driving Cars Crash Into Reality

In August, California regulators voted to allow self-driving car companies like Cruise and Waymo to expand their operations and start offering robotaxi services. 2 months later, after a litany of mistakes, Cruise is pulling all of its driverless cars off the road. Is this an existential threat to the entire AV industry? Guest: David Zipper, visiting fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/27/202329 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard Takeover

Since Microsoft announced its bid to buy Activision Blizzard last year, regulators around the world sounded the alarm that the merger would suppress competition in the industry.  Now that the deal has officially gone through, should gamers be worried?  Guest: Jason Schreier, covering the video game industry for Bloomberg If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/21/202327 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Hamas' Social Media Strategy

Since war broke out, Hamas has been efficient in getting its message out on social media - both in providing crucial information to refugees fleeing the area, and in waging psychological warfare. How can platforms meet the need for open lines of communication without spreading propaganda?  Guest: Sheera Frenkel, covering tech for the New York Times If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/20/202327 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

The $30,000 Zelle Scam

Zelle has exploded in popularity as a fast, convenient way to send and receive money. But the story of a couple who was scammed out of a pool shows there are problems with safety on the platform.  Guest: Devin Friedman, journalist and senior correspondent for GQ magazine. You can read Devin’s piece here. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Check out Compiler here: https://link.chtbl.com/compiler?sid=podcast.whatnext.2023 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/14/202325 minutes, 47 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Israel-Hamas War Instantly Broke X

When the Arab Spring was unfolding, Twitter was hailed as a way for on-the-ground reporting to reach the public. But when fighting between Hamas and Israel broke out over the weekend, X became flooded with misinformation. Guest: Casey Newton, founder and editor of the technology newsletter Platformer. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/13/202333 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Man Who Turned You Into Data

Hank Asher was a lot of things: a Florida condo maven, a drug runner, a DEA informant—and a tech visionary who created the mixed blessing of turning everyone’s online activity into an unshakable shadow profile. Guest: McKenzie Funk, reporter for Pro Publica and the author of The Hank Show If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/7/202327 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sam Bankman-Fried—and Crypto—on Trial

As the trial begins, SBF is making the case that what he did is typical in the world of crypto. But when the government paints a much bleaker picture of FTX—one riddled with fraud and deception—what does that say about the industry?  Guest: Nitish Pahwa, associate business and tech writer at Slate. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/6/202332 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Crypto's House of Cards

The trial of Sam Bankman-Fried marks the end of an era where crypto rose to dizzying, Super-Bowl-commercial heights. Where does the industry go from here?  Guest: Zeke Faux, investigative reporter for Bloomberg and author of Number Go Up: Inside Crypto’s Wild Rise and Staggering Fall.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/1/202331 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Who Will Pay For A COVID Vaccine?

After years of being a rare spot of universal, American-government-funded health care, this fall’s new COVID-19 vaccine is hitting the commercial market for the first time. So far, the rollout has been mired by hiccups and confusion.  Guest: Jen Kates, senior vice president at KFF If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Podcast production by Evan Campbell and Anna Philips. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/30/202331 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Amazon a Monopoly?

Amazon evolved from a place to get cheap used books to the “everything store”—one encompassing warehouses, logistics and shipping.  But with the FTC now run by Lina Khan—who wrote the essay ‘Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox” while at Yale Law School—a new contender for “antitrust trial of the century” has begun.  Guest: Leah Nylen, antitrust reporter for Bloomberg If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/29/202328 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Instacart’s IPO Means for Tech

As other tech companies that rode the pandemic to success started sinking, Instacart managed to stay above water—they turned a profit and even made it to an IPO. But a stubbornly static stock price has some asking if Instacart—and the whole gig economy—hasn’t already peaked.   Guest: Erin Griffith, who reports on tech startups and venture capital for the New York Times If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/23/202326 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did AirBnB Need to Go?

The sword of regulation, which has been swinging over New York AirBnBs for over a decade, is falling at last. But will new laws for short-term rentals have the effect housing advocates are hoping for? And after many failed efforts, can these laws actually be enforced?  Guest: Heather Tal Murphy, Slate writer covering tech and business. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/22/202324 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Politicians Keep Kids Safe Online?

The bipartisan Kids Online Safety Act has noble-sounding intentions, but has been called one of the most dangerous bills in years by the digital rights group, the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Guest: Richard Blumenthal, senior United States senator from Connecticut.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/16/202330 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Google Makes Its Case

A trial a decade in the making has started, as the U.S. Justice Department’s antitrust case against Google and its unrivaled position as the top search engine begins. Is this the beginning of the government “taking on Big Tech” and the end of Google as we know it? Guest: Leah Nylen, covering antitrust for Bloomberg. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/15/202332 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

Bad Air, Worse Vibes

COVID’s still here but the public’s appetite for masking, social distancing, or remote learning is long gone. One palatable way to stop the spread: improving air circulation indoors.  Guest: Apoorva Mandavilli, science and global health reporter for the New York Times If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/9/202321 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tech Disrupts the School Bus

When Howard County signed a $27 million contract with the start-up Zum, the company promised to modernize the way schools provide transportation. But when the school year started, that’s not what happened. Guest: Daniel Zawodny, covering transportation for the Baltimore Banner and corps member of Report For America. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/8/202327 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Social Media’s Pivot from News

It wasn’t long ago when social media was a place to go for up-to-the-minute updates in an emergency. But even as internet access is more widespread than ever—and natural disasters more frequent—Twitter and Facebook are less useful than ever. As hubs for news, that era appears over.  Guest: Will Oremus, tech reporter for the Washington Post. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/3/202328 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is LinkedIn...Cool Now?

As Twitt—sorry, X—continues to go through tumult, an unlikely, long-time player is emerging as the last acceptable place to post. Guest: Sarah Frier, tech editor at Bloomberg Businessweek. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Podcast production by Evan Campbell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/1/202326 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Cost of "Sustainable" Pet Food

Most pet food is made from the byproducts of the meat that we, humans, eat. Recently, there’s been a rise in high-end pet food products - including things like lab-grown meat - that are touted as sustainable options for your furry friend. But a closer look raises questions about whether or not this food is actually better for the environment. Guest: Chloe Sorvino, writer for Forbes and the author of the book Raw Deal: Hidden Corruption, Corporate Greed, and the Fight for the Future of Meat. Special thanks to Patrick Fort and Garbanzo.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/27/202327 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

TikTok's Shady Deal with the U.S.

In the spring, it looked like TikTok was on the verge of being banned in America. Since then, it’s continued operating business as usual.  But this week, it was revealed that ByteDance and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States came close to striking a deal that would allow TikTok to continue operating in the U.S. The negotiations give a glimpse into how social media—and by extension speech itself—could be regulated on the internet. Guest: Emily Baker-White, tech reporter and senior writer at Forbes If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/25/202327 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Digital Life After Death

Sorting through a loved one’s things after they’ve died can be an emotional, difficult chore. But now, added to that, people have to sort through the deceased’s password-protected online presence.  Guests: Kate Lindsay, author of the internet culture newsletter Embedded and the article “My Mom Will Email Me After She Dies” in the Atlantic. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/20/202326 minutes, 46 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Crypto Fails Sex Workers

At first, cryptocurrency seemed like the solution to the problems sex workers have had with traditional banks. But as the US moves to regulate the crypto industry, many are finding it hasn’t worked out like they hoped.  Guests: Joel Khalili, reporter at Wired Liara Roux, sex worker, organizer, and writer You can check out Joel’s reporting in Wired here.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/18/202325 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tech's Mask Off Moment

When conservative writer Richard Hanania’s old posts, originally published under a pseudonym, came to light, people were shocked at just how racist and reactionary they were. Perhaps less shocking were the tech moguls who were revealed to be supporting him.  Guest: Anil Dash, technologist and writer, and the head of Glitch If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/13/202329 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Smart Guns Save Lives?

A “smart gun” is designed to only work in the hands of the gun’s proper owner. With the first smart gun potentially coming to market later this year, can the tech deliver on its promise? Guests:  Champe Barton, reporter at The Trace Kai Kloepfer, founder and CEO of Biofire If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/11/202329 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Another Summer of COVID

After a quiet spring, COVID is surging back for the fourth consecutive summer. So, is this just life now?  Guest: Katherine Wu, staff writer at the Atlantic If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/6/202328 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tesla's Big Lie

Tesla sold a vision of how electric vehicles would work: just like gas-powered cars, but cleaner, better. But as a scandal about misrepresented battery life and driving range unfolds, and the price of their cars remains high, it increasingly looks like the transition will be anything but seamless—if it happens at all.  Guest: Edward Niedermeyer, author of Ludicrous: The Unvarnished Story of Tesla Motors. You can check out Reuters reporting on Tesla’s range scandal here.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/4/202329 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

America’s Downtown Ghost Towns

It’s 2023 – and less than half of all Americans have returned to the office full time. That means U.S. downtowns from San Francisco to New York are emptier than they’ve been in decades. Offices are actually trending away from policies that mandate returning five days a week. So, how can cities get creative – and develop some new ways to boost the local economy? Guest: Henry Grabar, Slate staff writer If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Amicus—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/30/202332 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

Washington vs. A.I.

At a White House summit late last week, some of the biggest names in tech - including Meta, Google and OpenAI - signed “voluntary” commitments to safeguard artificial intelligence. In Congress, Senate Leader Chuck Schumer recently introduced a “legislative framework” for A.I. law… but as they debate and deliberate, the A.I. train continues to move full steam ahead. It’s clear the government’s paying attention, but can they keep up with the technology?   Guest: Makena Kelly, politics reporter at The Verge Don Beyer, U.S. representative for Virginia's 8th congressional district If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Amicus—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/28/202327 minutes
Episode Artwork

Why Tech Lays Women Off First

When the tech industry started rounds of layoffs this year, almost half of the people let go were women—even though they make up a much smaller percentage of the workforce. What does this say about women in tech, and efforts to diversify the industry overall? Guest: Emma Goldberg, a reporter who covers the future of work for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/23/202330 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

America’s $5 Trillion Grid Problem

To keep places like Phoenix habitable, we need to have air-conditioning. But to have air-conditioning, we need a functional, modern electrical grid. With America’s grid already aging—and more demand coming in the form of electric cars and more A/C for hotter weather—what will it take to keep it going as the weather gets more extreme?  Guest: Dr. Joshua Rhodes, research scientist at the University of Texas at Austin studying energy systems and how they interact with our environment, climate, and life. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/21/202327 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

America’s Killer Car Problem

Pedestrian deaths in America have been rising for the last decade, while dropping in Europe and Japan. What makes the U.S. so dangerous for pedestrians? Guest: Jessie Singer, author of There Are No Accidents: The Deadly Rise of Injury and Disaster―Who Profits and Who Pays the Price.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/16/202335 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will UPS Workers Join "Hot Strike Summer?"

Contract negotiations between the Teamsters and UPS broke down last week and now a strike looms. With time running out, can both sides reach a deal?  Guest: Noam Scheiber, labor reporter for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/14/202332 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Your Son Watching Andrew Tate?

Andrew Tate’s gross mix of self-help, toxic masculinity and misogyny captured the minds of young boys on the internet. It also led to indictments in Romania on human trafficking and rape charges.   Guest: Lisa Miller, contributing editor at New York magazine. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/9/202336 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Threads vs. Twitter

It seems like with each new Musk innovation, a new Twitter replacement appears in response. But Threads is backed by Meta and available in just a few clicks for an Instagram user. Could it be the one? Guest: Mike Isaac, technology reporter for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/7/202327 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Turning Your Face Into Your Ticket

Even if you like the convenience of your phone unlocking after it reads your face, there are reasons to be wary of the TSA bringing facial recognition technology to the airport.  Guest: Geoffrey Fowler, technology columnist for the Washington Post. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/2/202323 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Never-Ending Cancer Drug Shortage

A shortage of basic chemotherapy drugs to treat cancer is jeopardizing the care of hundreds of thousands of patients. The drugs aren’t expensive, or patented—so where are they?  Guest: Ed Yong, science journalist at The Atlantic. Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/30/202334 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Ozempic Cure Addiction?

Semaglutide, better known by its brand name Ozempic, has been making headlines as a weight loss drug – despite only having FDA approval to treat diabetes. Now, some say it doesn’t just quell cravings for food – it helps quiet cravings for alcohol, drugs, and other compulsive behaviors. For years, researchers have been studying semaglutide's effectiveness as an addiction cure in animals. What have they found? And – does it actually work?  Guest: Sarah Zhang covers health and medicine for The Atlantic If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Amicus—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/25/202329 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

The U.S. vs Amazon Prime

On Wednesday, the Federal Trade Commission sued Amazon, accusing the online giant of “tricking and trapping people into recurring subscriptions.” The complaint says Amazon “knowingly duped millions of consumers into unknowingly enrolling in Amazon Prime."  With murmurs of a larger antitrust probe against Amazon just around the corner, how serious is this suit for the tech giant?  Guest: Leah Nylen, antitrust reporter at Bloomberg If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Amicus—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/23/202325 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

The George Soros Succession

One son was preparing to take over George Soros’s multi-billion-dollar empire. Then, there was a falling out, and a new heir-apparent was chosen.  Who is Alex Soros? And, as he takes over for one of the most influential figures in American politics, what can we expect from him?  Guest: Gregory Zuckerman, special writer at the Wall Street Journal Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/18/202327 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

Reddit’s Rolling Blackouts

Across Reddit, thousands of forums have gone “private” and effectively disappeared. Users are protesting the site’s plan to capitalize on its data, which has been enjoyed for free by people making third-party apps for Reddit, as well as some of the world’s biggest companies training their A.I. Guest: Sarah Needleman, reporter for the Wall Street Journal who writes about interactive entertainment and social media Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/16/202326 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

Are You Ready For A.I. Generated Actors?

As “deep fakes” have demonstrated, it’s getting easier and easier to swap an actor for a digital likeness—something that contributed to the Screen Actors Guild voting to authorize joining the writers on strike.  Guest: Heather Tal Murphy, Slate writer covering tech, business, and A.I. Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Check out AWS Insiders here: https://link.chtbl.com/awsinsiders?sid=podcast.whatnexttbd Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/11/202332 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Crypto Toast?

This week, the SEC sued Binance, the largest crypto exchange in the world, and Coinbase, the largest crypto exchange in the US. Is it a sign that the glory days of crypto are gone? Guest: Stacy-Marie Ishmael, managing editor for crypto at Bloomberg News Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/9/202333 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tech’s Newest Trillion Dollar Company

Until recently, Nvidia was a company known for graphics cards—a brand name among gamers but not necessarily the general public. But as part of the A.I. boom, Nvidia’s stock has skyrocketed, putting the company in Silicon Valley’s trillion-dollar valuation class with Apple, Meta, and Alphabet—briefly, at least. Guest: Don Clark, freelance reporter specializing in chips and enterprise tech. Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/4/202323 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Your Childhood Was Their Content

When someone posts a photo of you online without your consent, it should be easy to have it taken down or confront the person who posted it. But what if the poster is your parent, and it’s not just one photo, but your entire childhood that’s readily available online? And as social media algorithms evolve to push content in front of as many people as possible, what happens when a temper tantrum goes viral? Guest: Kathryn Lindsay, technology and culture writer. Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/2/202327 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Trouble With TikTok Songs

How the music streaming business opened the door to billions of dollars in fraud. Guest: Ashley Carman, Bloomberg News reporter covering the podcasting, music, and audio beat. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/28/202321 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tweetering on the Glass Cliff

How Twitter’s new CEO Linda Yaccarino finds herself on the edge of “the glass cliff”: when a woman is sent in to fix a big mess.  Guest: Vittoria Elliot, reporter for Wired, covering platforms and power If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/26/202323 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Tipping Point for Digital Tipping

From the coffee shop to the salon to the grocery store, Americans feel like they’re being prompted and prodded for tips more than ever—and they’re starting to resent it. Guest: Kelly Phillips Erb, tax and law reporter for Forbes.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/21/202331 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Sports Are All in on Betting

Out of the smoky backrooms, Vegas and clandestine dens, and straight to your phone—how did gambling on sports go from forbidden to inescapable seemingly overnight?  Guest: John Holden, associate professor at Oklahoma State’s Spears school of business  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Check out AWS Insiders here: https://link.chtbl.com/awsinsiders?sid=podcast.whatnexttbd Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/19/202327 minutes, 38 seconds
Episode Artwork

Space After NASA

Space might seem to be heading from the domain of big government programs to a playground for billionaires. But just below the surface, a world of start-ups are getting ready to launch.  Guest:  Ashlee Vance, business columnist and author of When the Heavens Went on Sale: The Misfits and Geniuses Racing to Put Space Within Reach.  If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/14/202333 minutes, 4 seconds
Episode Artwork

Who’s Afraid of A.I.?

Artificial intelligence—as it already exists today—is drawing from huge troves of surveillance data and is rife with the biases built into the algorithm, in service of the huge corporations that develop and maintain the systems. The fight for the future doesn’t look like war with Skynet; it’s happening right now on the lines of the Writer’s Guild strike.  Guests:  Meredith Whittaker, president of the Signal Foundation, co-founder of the AI Now Institute at NYU If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/12/202332 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

What's Going on at Meta?

Meta’s reached a sort of mid-life crisis. Between the layoffs, the stagnant metaverse and Facebook’s dwindling profile, does Zuckerberg have a plan here? Guests:  Naomi Nix, Washington Post reporter If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/7/202332 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

What the Writers' Strike Is Really About

When television and screenwriters went on strike in 2007, Netflix had just started offering the option to stream content. This week, the Writer’s Guild of America went on strike to update pay structures for the streaming era—and to get ahead of A.I. and the changes it may bring.  Guests:  Michelle Dean, television writer and journalist Anousha Sakoui, entertainment industry writer for the Los Angeles Times If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/5/202330 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Your Uber Drivers' Pay Rigged?

Two gig workers standing side-by-side can be offered the very same job and get offered two different wages. Set by an algorithm and based on calculations that are never explained to the workers themselves, this unequal pay for equal work is already subject to lawsuits that call it a form of price fixing and wage discrimination, but the tech is being tested in other industries. Guests: Veena Dubal, law professor at the University of California College of the Law, San Francisco Sergio Avedian, senior contributor at The Rideshare Guy If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/30/202324 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Stephen King Is Just as Confused About Blue Checks as You Are

Twitter’s “blue check” verification went from something you applied for, to something you could pay for, to something you had to pay for…to something that many celebrities wouldn’t even accept for free. Master of horror Stephen King told us he wouldn’t pay for a blue check, but he’s not going to fight it either—he just doesn’t really understand what’s going on. Does anyone at Twitter understand? Guests:  Alex Heath, deputy editor of The Verge Jon Favreau, co-founder of Crooked Media, speechwriter for President Barack Obama Stephen King, author If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/28/202333 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

"Crap Apps": Why Weather Apps Suck

Weather apps can be frustrating. And with how much we rely on them to know if we should wear pants or shorts, they'll still leave you in the rain. But as the climate gets wilder, the questions of how to tell people what they need to know—and quickly—can be an issue of life or death. Guest: Charlie Warzel, staff writer at the Atlantic Daniel Swain, UCLA climate scientist   Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/23/202324 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will A.I. Close Off the Internet?

Reddit announced it will start charging companies to use its huge, ever-growing trove of text to train A.I. chatbots. It’s another expense for the fledgling tech and another knock against the “open internet” ideals that Reddit once embodied.  Guest: Mike Isaac, tech reporter for the New York Times. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/21/202325 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will Banning Social Media Help Kids?

A new law in Utah that goes into effect next year states that anyone under 18 needs parental permission to use social media. Is it a necessary step to protect children from harms associated with social media, or are we blunting a tool of expression for the youth?  Guest: Dr. Mitch Prinstein, chief science officer at American Psychological Association Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/16/202332 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Gamers Leaked Classified Pentagon Docs

Discord is a place to share a community online. Most often, it's for gaming. So why did classified intelligence from the Pentagon end up on a small server whose main interests seem to be video games, military equipment and memes? And how? Guest: Shane Harris, intelligence and national security reporter for the Washington Post. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/14/202333 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Flying Is So Bad Now

U.S. air travel is being strained on all sides—travel demand is back to 2019 levels, but the number of pilots and planes and ground crew hasn’t caught back up, and a rash of close calls are raising safety concerns about America’s aging flying infrastructure. Guest: Jon Ostrower, editor in chief of The Air Current. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/9/202334 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

Wait, TikTok Has a Sister App?

While TikTok’s parent company, Bytedance, is fighting to keep its flagship app from being banned in the United States, it’s also pushing a new app into the marketplace—Lemon8. One part Pinterest, one part Instagram and a dash of its sister app, Lemon8 is most likely saddled with the same security concerns that led lawmakers to consider banning TikTok. Guest: Sapna Maheshwari, business reporter for the New York Times. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/7/202330 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Seeking Asylum Via App

CBP One, U.S. Customs and Border Protection's app that is supposed to make crossing the border more efficient, is littered with bugs. But even a perfectly functional smartphone app would pose problems for people seeking asylum on the southern U.S. border.  Guest: Arelis Hernández, Washington Post reporter Gia Del Pino, director of communications at the Kino Border Initiative Felicia Rangel Samponaro, director of the Sidewalk School Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/2/202339 minutes, 38 seconds
Episode Artwork

When A.I. Denies Your Health Care

As Medicare Advantage plans have increased their reliance on software to determine what their customers require—and, therefore, receive—elderly patients are being denied coverage for care they need. What happens when an algorithm — not a doctor — decides how much care you need and it’s not enough? Guest: Casey Ross, national technology correspondent at STAT Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/31/202332 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tesla’s Full Self-Driving Woes

Elon Musk has been promising fully self-driving Teslas to the public for years and the beta version of Full Self-Driving is already in over 300,000 cars. But as a recent recall attests, the software still isn’t ready to take the wheel—and Musk himself may be a big reason why.  Guest: Faiz Siddiqui, tech reporter for the Washington Post Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/26/202335 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Case Against TikTok

To most of its 150 million American consumers, TikTok is a fun app. To some creators, TikTok is a job and their platform. But to members of the US government, TikTok is a national security risk. As the fight over TikTok’s future comes to Capitol Hill this week, what’s next for the embattled social media platform? Guest: Emily Baker-White, senior writer, tech reporter at Forbes Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/24/202338 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

When A.I. Steals Your Voice

Using just what you’ve posted to social media, generative A.I. can create a “puppet version” of your voice—one that’s close enough to scam your family into paying thousands in, say, bail money. And imitating public officials to create “deep fakes” who say whatever they’re told is even easier.  Guest: Pranshu Verma, tech reporter for the Washington Post. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/19/202328 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Where Is Silicon Valley Going to Bank Now?

The economy is doing well almost every but in tech, where headlines about layoffs have been replaced with news about Silicon Valley Bank’s demise. The collapse of “the central artery for the tech industry” looks like the end of an era. Where do venture capitalists, start-ups—and the industry writ large—go now? Guest: Priya Anand, reporter at Bloomberg covering venture capital and start-ups. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Podcast production by Evan Campbell and Patrick Fort. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/17/202331 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

Would You Let A.I. Date For You?

The online dating world can be brutal and repetitive—just the kind of thing you might want to automate. But, in one tech writer’s experience, artificial intelligence isn’t ready to make real connections—at least, not without a lot of help. Guest: Heather Tal Murphy, covers business and technology at Slate Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/12/202332 minutes
Episode Artwork

When Meta Tells Law Enforcement About Your Abortion

Just weeks before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, a Nebraska woman and her daughter were charged with performing an illegal abortion, thanks to information that law enforcement uncovered by going through their Facebook accounts.  Guest: Johana Bhuiyan, senior reporter on tech and surveillance for The Guardian Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/10/202328 minutes, 34 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Hollywood Weight Loss Wonder Drug

The diabetes medication Ozempic has exploded in popularity, particularly amongst those in Hollywood looking to lose a few extra pounds. But a silver bullet for weight loss leads to a number of questions: Is “buying weight loss” via injection somehow worse than diet and exercise? Are so many people buying and using this drug that people who need it for its intended purpose are missing out? What happened to body positivity?  Guest: Matthew Schneier, feature writer for New York Magazine. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/5/202334 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Would Convince a Lab Leak Skeptic?

It was reported this week that the U.S. Department of Energy now believes, “with low confidence,” that the COVID-19 virus came from a lab. But is there enough evidence for the “lab leak theory” to convince those who believe the virus emerged from animals in a wet market? Guest: Angela Rasmussen, virologist at the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization at the University of Saskatchewan in Canada. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/3/202335 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is a 25-Year-Old’s Brain Mature?

New understandings of how our brains develop are changing how the law considers who is mature and who isn’t. But If our brains are still developing, when can the law treat us like adults?  Guest: Jane C. Hu, independent science journalist. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/26/202327 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why A.I. Says the Darndest Things

Microsoft has been testing out their new artificial intelligence on their long-ridiculed search engine Bing. The results? A chatbot that lies brazenly and confidently, and has a penchant for manipulation. What are the risks and rewards of letting bots loose on the world? Guest: Drew Harwell, Washington Post tech reporter covering artificial intelligence  Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/24/202331 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Baby-Sleep Industrial Complex

The tech-laden, luxury bassinet “Snoo” has been presented as preventing Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, helping babies sleep longer, and a totally reasonable way to spend $1,700. Is any of that true? Guest: Kate Taylor, senior features correspondent for Business Insider John Collins, Lizzie’s husband. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/19/202334 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Made the Balloon Drama Pop Off?

Come to think of it, a giant balloon seems like a pretty conspicuous way to spy on another country. So what was that Chinese spy balloon doing above the U.S.—and what have American planes been shooting down since? Guest: Shane Harris, Washington Post reporter covering intelligence and national security.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/17/202338 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

Contraband Tech Behind Bars

It’s hard to put a number on it but judging from the number of videos emerging online, there are more and more contraband cell phones finding their way into the hands of people in prison, who use them to record TikTok dances, take online courses, and alert the outside world to what’s happening on the inside. Guest: Keri Blakinger, criminal justice reporter at the Los Angeles Times, author of Corrections in Ink. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/12/202334 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Ban TikTok?

TikTok was banned on government agency devices in December; several schools and universities have banned it on their devices and wifi networks, and the governor of Texas unveiled a plan to ban it in the state. Can “Project Texas” stem the anti-TikTok tide? And would banning the app actually achieve…anything? Guest: Louise Matsakis, reporter for Semafor covering tech and China Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/10/202330 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did a Twentysomething Con America’s Biggest Bank?

JP Morgan Chase is getting an education on FAFSA and financial aid–which would’ve been helpful before they acquired a now, quite dubious seeming start-up. Guest: Ron Lieber, New York Times journalist, author of the “Your Money” column. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/5/202335 minutes, 38 seconds
Episode Artwork

How COVID Changes Our Immune Systems

Last fall it seemed like everyone got sick—not just with COVID, but from a slew of respiratory diseases, from the mild to the severe. Researchers are trying to untangle how our immune systems have changed in the COVID era, and if we’re paying back an “immunity debt” or are victims of “immunity theft.”  Guest: Tim Requarth, contributing writer to Slate.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/3/202331 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did A.I. Write This Headline?

The proliferation of chatbots and A.I.-generated art has consumers and tech companies alike convinced that artificial intelligence is ready to be integrated into consumer electronics, products, homes, and across industry. In fact, it’s already in progress. What’s the worst that can happen? Guest: Will Oremus, technology reporter for the Washington Post Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/29/202337 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will Google Get Broken Up?

The U.S. Department of Justice announced this week that it is suing Google over its ad technology. What do they contend Google has been doing? And does this mean Alphabet is headed for a Bell Telecom-style bust-up? Guest: Leah Nylen, reporter covering antitrust for Bloomberg News Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/27/202330 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

Does Meta Even Care When Its Users Get Hacked?

It can feel very personal to have your Facebook or Instagram page hacked—they’re your pictures and your friends after all. But Meta, the social media parent company, handles hacks with anything but a personal touch.  Guest: Kirstin Grind, investigative reporter for the Wall Street Journal. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/22/202332 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

An Antivax Dog Whistle Goes Viral

The idea that COVID-19 vaccines are linked to sudden deaths among young people has no scientific support, but the theory nevertheless has a lot of traction on social media.  How can public health officials educate the public—especially on subject like vaccines, where their effectiveness renders them effectively invisible?  Guest: Katelyn Jetelina, epidemiologist and data scientist Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/20/202332 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tesla’s No Good, Very Bad Year

Elon Musk was promising an “epic” Q4 at Tesla last year. But 2022 ended closer to what might be considered an “epic fail,” with the stock price down 65 percent. In an uncertain economic environment like this one, how much blame goes to Musk for unloading $40 billion worth of stock and focusing on his shiny new social media network? Or are these just growing pains that every company goes through as they mature?  Guest: Dana Hull, automotive and technology reporter for Bloomberg News in San Francisco Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/15/202334 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why the Feds Want to Kill Noncompetes

You might think of noncompete agreements as mostly limited to highly skilled, highly paid tech workers to protect trade secrets. But one-third of workers bound by noncompetes make $13/hour or less: fast-food workers, security guards, and the like. Noncompete clauses not only give employers leverage over their employees—both during and after their employment—but studies have shown the agreements are a weight on the economy, which is why the FTC is angling for a federal ban.  Guest: Elizabeth Wilkins, director of the Office of Policy Planning, Federal Trade Commission Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/13/202325 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

How War in Taiwan Could Short-Circuit U.S. Tech

Roughly 95 percent of advanced semiconductor chip manufacturing happens in Taiwan, leaving the U.S. vulnerable to supply chain shocks and national security threats. Is the Biden administration’s $280 billion bill, signed in August last year, enough to boost domestic chip manufacturing? Guest: Don Clark, freelance reporter specializing on chips and enterprise tech. Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/8/202328 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will Southwest Be Held Accountable?

Over the holidays, thousands of passengers were left stranded or delayed when Southwest Airline’s outdated re-booking software broke down. Who can be held accountable, and why don’t airlines invest more in their own infrastructure?  Guest: Heather Tal Murphy, business and technology reporter for Slate. Host: Mary C. Curtis If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/6/202331 minutes, 47 seconds
Episode Artwork

One Year - 1942: The Most Hated Man in America

At the beginning of World War II, the greatest threat to the American war effort wasn’t the Nazis or the Japanese—it was runaway inflation. The man in charge of stopping it was the country’s “price czar,” Leon Henderson. In 1942, he controlled how much coffee ordinary people could drink and how many tires they could buy. Those rules made him a nationwide villain. But would they save the country? One Year is produced by Evan Chung, Sophie Summergrad, Sam Kim, and Josh Levin. Derek John is senior supervising producer of narrative podcasts and Merritt Jacob is senior technical director. Slate Plus members get to hear more about the making of One Year. Get access to extra episodes, listen to the show without any ads, and support One Year by signing up for Slate Plus for just $15 for your first three months. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/23/202248 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

Are You Ready For Lab-Grown Meat?

The Food and Drug Administration gave an important thumbs up to lab-grown chicken, which means we could start seeing it in stores as soon as next year. While billions of dollars have been spent developing lab-grown meat, important questions remain: Is the production of it actually greener than raising livestock? Can it be made affordably? Is it healthy? And will anyone eat it? Guest: Chloe Sorvino, staff writer on food and agriculture at Forbes, and the author of Raw Deal: Hidden Corruption, Corporate Greed and the Fight for the Future of Meat. Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/18/202234 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

SBF's Worst Week Yet

Even in a crazy year for crypto, Sam Bankman-Fried’s story is undeniably the most bananas. And even in the context of the implosion of FTX, getting arrested has got to make this week his worst yet. What charges does SBF face? Guest: Stacy-Marie Ishmael, managing editor on crypto for Bloomberg News Host: Lizzie O’Leary Sponsored by Saks.com. Check out the Holiday Gift Guide on saks.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/16/202240 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

San Francisco’s Self-Driving Mess

Self-driving cars and robotaxis are starting to appear on the streets of San Francisco. While we have a whole regulatory system in place for drivers, who’s making sure these new cars are safe? Guest: David Zipper, Visiting Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School's Taubman Center for State and Local Government Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/11/202231 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

Let’s Talk, Chatbots

Artificial intelligence is growing in leaps and bounds, and everywhere from Big Tech companies like Google to small teams like OpenAI are developing more and more convincing chatbots. Is the world ready for convincing, talking computers?  Guest: Alex Kantrowitz, host of the Big Technology podcast. Host: Emily Peck If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/9/202234 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Big Tech’s Boogeymen In Washington

The Biden administration’s Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission are both staffed with accomplished progressives who are proving more aggressive than their predecessors in either the Trump or Obama eras. But can Big Tech be tamed? Guest: Leah Nylen, reporter for Bloomberg News  Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/4/202240 minutes, 1 second
Episode Artwork

Twitter's Vulnerabilities, Exposed

Dating back to the Arab Spring, Twitter’s potential for real-time organizing has been a selling point. But trying to find information on China’s “Zero COVID” protests reveals just how vulnerable the now-understaffed platform is to manipulation. Guest: Joseph Menn, cybersecurity reporter for the Washington Post.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about Avast One at Avast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/2/202232 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Trap of Buy Now, Pay Later

The option to “buy now and pay later” over installments exploded over the past two years, thanks to people being flush with stimulus cash and shopping online during the pandemic. But is this new, underregulated industry a useful line of credit or another path into debt? Guest: Paulina Cachero, personal finance reporter for Bloomberg. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/27/202234 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

The End of the Tech Boom

After decades as America’s booming industry, tens of thousands of tech workers have been laid off in November alone. Is the venture-capital, low-interest-rate wind leaving the sails temporary or is this the end of the hunt for “the next big thing?” Guest: Timothy B. Lee, reporter for Full Stack Economics covering labor markets, technology, and housing. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/20/202231 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Case Against Climate Reparations

At this year’s annual UN conference on climate change, they are discussing “climate reparations,” wherein the rich countries that grew their wealth burning fossil fuels pay money to poorer and more vulnerable countries. It sounds sensible, but is the UN capable of administering something like this? And how much money are we talking here? Guest: Vijay Vaitheeswaran, global energy and climate innovation editor at The Economist. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about Avast One at Avast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/18/202233 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is This The Cryptocalypse?

The (once) third-largest cryptocurrency exchange, FTX, collapsed in stunning fashion this week, highlighting why consumers really do want regulation, and why old financial institutions remain wary of crypto.   Guest: Felix Salmon, host of Slate Money, chief financial correspondent for Axios. Host: Lizzie O’Leary   If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/13/202233 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

Senator Chris Murphy on Elon's Acquisition of Twitter

The second largest investor in Twitter, after Elon Musk, is the Saudis, which raises questions about what kinds of “free speech” Musk is really committed to. But it also raises questions around national security in the U.S.  Guest: Chris Murphy, U.S. Senator from Connecticut Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/11/202222 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Are So Many Little Kids Sick Right Now?

It’s been a rough autumn for parents of little kids, as non-COVID respiratory diseases are taking advantage of the first fall since 2019 where schools and daycares are full again, and America’s strained pediatric health care system is once again put to the test.  Guest: Katherine Wu, science writer for The Atlantic. Host: Lizzie O’Leary. Podcast production by Madeline Ducharme. If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/6/202228 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

So How’s It Going, Elon?

One week in as head honcho of Twitter and Elon Musk is in a tight spot: how do you balance the desires of advertisers with your ostensible zeal for free speech? How do you make something for which you’ve already overpaid turn a profit? How do you convince Stephen King to pony up for a blue check? Guest: Alex Kirshner, contributing writer at Slate.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Podcast production by Madeline Ducharme. Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about Avast One at Avast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/4/202231 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

Big Brother, Big Tech and China

There are some 400 million surveillance cameras installed in China, one for every three to four civilians. Built with the help of American tech companies, the surveillance state was pitched to the public as a way to make society safer and more efficient. But after severe lockdowns during COVID, the public has been objecting out of the eye of the camera lens. Protests are being written on bathroom walls. Guest: Josh Chin, deputy bureau chief, China, for the Wall Street Journal Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/30/202242 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

Twitter Is Dead; Long Live Twitter

Twitter has been a lot of things—where you posted your lunch, where you met your people, where you were subjected to a harassment campaign. Now, as Elon Musk prepares to take the reins, where is it headed? Guest: Will Oremus, technology reporter for the Washington Post. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/28/202242 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can We Make an Alzheimer’s Drug That Works?

Alzheimer’s treatment hasn’t changed much in the past two decades, and the way researchers have been thinking about and approaching the disease may be to blame.  Guest: Damian Garde, reporter for Stat covering the biotech industry. Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/23/202234 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

When An Algorithm Raises Your Rent

One company’s software is helping set prices for apartments across the country. But when does an algorithm telling landlords how much to charge—by drawing on property data—cross the line from “handy tool” to “illegal price-fixing”?  Guest: Heather Vogell, reporter with ProPublica Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/21/202234 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Are You Ready to Be Composted When You Die?

The idea of composting a human body may seem unsettling—or even gross—and it runs counter to the normal American funeral rites of embalming and internment, which preserve the body. But advocates say it’s a greener and more peaceful way to return our bodies to the Earth.  Guest: Eleanor Cummins, science journalist Host: Lizzie O’Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about Avast One at Avast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/16/202232 minutes, 55 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Next Amazon Union Fight

Following their victory in Staten Island, the Amazon Labor Union is still facing an uphill battle. Both the company and the union are closely watching the organizing vote at a warehouse outside of Albany, NY. Guest: Noam Scheiber, labor reporter for the New York Times. Host: Lizzie O'Leary If you enjoy this show, please consider signing up for Slate Plus. Slate Plus members get benefits like zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence—and you’ll be supporting the work we do here on What Next TBD. Sign up now at slate.com/whatnextplus to help support our work. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/14/202231 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Your Church Surveils Your Phone

Churches are using accountability apps to keep tabs on their members' behavior. But if your pastor wants to monitor your phone, can you truly consent? Guest: Dhruv Mehrotra Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/9/202224 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

Could the Supreme Court Kill the Internet As We Know It?

Twenty-six words defined the internet as we know it today. What happens if they’re deleted? Guest: Jeff Kosseff Host: Lizzie O'Leary The Twenty-Six Words That Created the Internet Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/7/202230 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Philosopher With Silicon Valley's Ear

Longtermism, the idea that positively influencing the future is a key moral priority of our time, is hot in Silicon Valley. But does it miss the bigger picture? Guests: William MacAskill, Robert Wright Host: Lizzie O'Leary Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about Avast One at Avast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/2/202258 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Climate Change Makes You Sell Your House

With disaster relief funds from Hurricane Harvey, Houston's Harris County instituted a mandatory buyout program for residents in flood-prone areas. But some residents didn't want to leave. Guest: Amal Ahmed, Dolores Mendoza Host: Mary C. Curtis Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/30/202228 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Nuclear Power Be Green?

Nuclear technology has become more important than ever, thanks to a global energy crisis and climate change. But it also has a complicated history. Guest: Joshua Keating Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/25/202226 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Fight Over Online Speech Headed to the Supreme Court

Conservative lawmakers in Florida and Texas are taking aim at content moderation on social media, with implications that go far beyond just the platforms. Guest: Mark Joseph Stern Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/23/202233 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Hidden Abuse Behind Those Spam Texts You're Getting

Victims of a new and high tech kind of human trafficking are forced to scam people all around the world. Guest: Cezary Podkul Host: Lizzie O'Leary Human Trafficking’s Newest Abuse: Forcing Victims Into Cyberscamming Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/18/202231 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Big Internet Keeps Small Communities Disconnected

A small parish in Louisiana tried to get affordable, fast internet. An incumbent ISP stopped them. Guest: Issie Lapowsky, Wanda Manning Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/16/202227 minutes, 46 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Chaos That Made YouTube a Juggernaut

An inside look at the rise of YouTube into a social media behemoth. Guests: Mark Bergen and Claire Stapleton Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/11/202235 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can A.I. Make Great Art?

Technology is transforming the creative economy and ideas about what "art" even is. Guest: Drew Harwell Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/9/202229 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Summer Vaccine of the Future

LYMErix, the first vaccine against Lyme, was pulled from the market amid poor sales and pressure from the public. Now, over 20 years later, a new vaccine is in late-stage trials. Guest: Cassandra Willyard Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/4/202220 minutes, 55 seconds
Episode Artwork

A.I. Made to Fight Child Porn Ensnared an Innocent Dad

A father took a photo of his son for their doctor. He wound up being investigated by the police. Guest: Kashmir Hill Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/2/202228 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Streaming TV Bloodbath

Shows are disappearing. Staff are getting axed. Is It greed, or necessary for the networks' survival? Guest: Julia Alexander Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/28/202228 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Hacker Blowing the Whistle on Twitter

Legendary hacker Peiter "Mudge" Zatko’s reputation in the cybersecurity world is unmatched. His allegations against Twitter’s security are all the more damning because of it. Guest: Joseph Menn Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/26/202235 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

We're Expecting the Wrong Things From the CDC

There's no way to remove politics from public health. Guest: Tim Requarth Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/21/202228 minutes, 55 seconds
Episode Artwork

What All That Money for Green Tech in the Climate Bill Is Buying

The Inflation Reduction Act is spurring progress towards new climate technology that, at times, sounds like something out of a science fiction movie. Will it make a dent in the fight against climate change? Guest: Pranshu Verma Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/19/202227 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

Big Pharma’s Bet on Psychedelics

The psychedelic renaissance is here. But not everyone’s on board. Guest: John Semley Host: Sonari Glinton Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/14/202227 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

Crypto Could Leave Texas in the Dark

Crypto mining is booming in Texas. Will the power grid be able to handle it? Guest: Russell Gold Host: Sonari Glinton Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/12/202227 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Monkeypox Vaccine Monopoly

It makes intuitive sense for companies that develop a technology to hold its intellectual property rights. But in the case of vaccines and medical treatments, IP laws slow down manufacturing and distribution and give private companies the power to make huge decisions that affect public health globally. Guest: Zain Rizvi, researcher for advocacy group Public Citizen, specializing in pharmaceutical innovation and access to medicine. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/7/202228 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Homes We Forgot to Build a Decade Ago

The US has been in a housing shortage for decades. Can it ever be fixed? Guest: Conor Dougherty Host: Emily Peck Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/5/202228 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Dark Web of Online Spider Sales

Researchers have untangled a world of illicit trade that threatens ecosystems and endangers species. Guest: Dr. Alice Hughes, Richard Stewart Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/31/202222 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Paging Dr. Bezos

In buying One Medical, Amazon is primed to be your doctor. Are they disrupting health care, or just collecting more data? Guest: Rebecca Pifer Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/29/202230 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

Smart City: Dumb Idea?

Toronto’s Quayside project is a telling example of how smart cities have failed. Could it also show how to make them better? Guest: Ben Green, Jennifer Keesmaat Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/24/202229 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Europe Is Burning

The continent's deadly heat wave is only the tip of the melting iceberg. Guest: Henry Grabar Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/22/202228 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

Silicon Valley's Hidden Discrimination

Thenmozhi Soundararajan was scheduled to give a talk at Google for Dalit History Month. It led to vicious attacks against her from some of its employees. Guest: Thenmozhi Soundararajan Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/17/202225 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can Twitter Sue Elon Musk Into Submission?

Dysfunction is nothing new to Twitter. But Elon Musk pulling his offer to buy the company adds a new layer of chaos. Guest: Alex Kantrowitz Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/15/202229 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Paxlovid's Mysteries

There's still a lot unknown about COVID's new wonder drug. Guest: Rachel Gutman-Wei Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/10/202226 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can FEMA Keep Up With Climate Change?

Climate change is causing unprecedented severe weather. Is the agency prepared for it to get worse? Guest: Craig Fugate and Ashley Nerbovig Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/8/202228 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Good Hackers

According to the Justice Department, there’s a right way — and a wrong way — to be a hacker. Guest: Josephine Wolff Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/3/202225 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

TikTok’s Mental Health Influencers

Social media makes mental health information accessible. But it's not a perfect solution. Guest: Lindsay Lee Wallace Host: Mary C. Curtis Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/1/202230 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

Does Crypto Investment Need to Be Regulated?

Fidelity made headlines when they announced you could invest your retirement savings in Bitcoin. Then the crypto market crashed. Guest: Anthony Lee Zhang Host: Sonari Glinton Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/26/202222 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can the Law Keep Up With the Internet?

The openness of the internet is its greatest strength. Or a glaring weakness, depending on who you ask. Does something need to change? Guest: Jared Schroeder Host: Sonari Glinton Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/24/202225 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

From the Vault: It's Hot. It's Flooding. Is This the New Normal?

This episode originally aired in July 2021. Last year, North Americans saw record-breaking heat, droughts, wildfires, and floods. The science is clear: we are living through the effects of climate change. Now scientists are trying to answer: is this the new normal? Guest: Daniel Swain, climate scientist at UCLA  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/19/202225 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Culture War Over Electric Cars

One state wants to stop people from buying one. But can electric vehicles be stopped?  Guest: Ryan Cornell Host: Sonari Glinton Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/17/202224 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sheryl Sandberg’s Complicated Legacy

She wanted to be an icon for working women. What went wrong? Guest: Sheera Frenkel Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/12/202228 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

Bots! What Are They Good For?

Elon Musk isn't wrong that Twitter has a bot problem. But he's kind of missing the point. Guest: Samuel Woolley Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/10/202226 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Elon Musk Any Good at Business?

Some call him revolutionary. Others call him a hack. Is his success warranted? Guest: Ashlee Vance Host: Lizzie O'Leary Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/5/202228 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can an Algorithm Spot a Shooter?

Schools have spent millions to detect threats online. It mostly doesn’t work. Guest: Arijit Sen Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/3/202223 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

Online Privacy in a Post-Roe World

What can current surveillance infrastructure tell us about online privacy after the fall of Roe?  Guest: Lily Hay Newman Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/29/202220 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will Bitcoin Ruin El Salvador?

Is El Salvador heading for default after going all in on crypto? Guest: Anna-Cat Brigida Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/27/202223 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

North Korea's Hacking Army

They’ve stolen billions of dollars. Is the U.S. ready to crack down? Guest: Jason Bartlett, research associate in the Energy, Economics, and Security Program at the Center for a New American Security Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/22/202223 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Buffalo Could Transform Social Media

The shooting in Buffalo raises questions about the effectiveness of content moderation. Is the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism the answer to how social media can moderate extremist content? Guest: Emma Llansó, director of the Free Expression Project at the Center for Democracy and Technology Host: Ray Suarez Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/20/202221 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Trump’s Twitter Clone

Trump's Truth Social network was supposed to be the right's answer to Twitter. What happens to the company if Elon takes over? Guest: Drew Harwell, reporter for the Washington Post Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/15/202221 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can A.I. Know What You're Feeling?

Companies are developing and selling A.I. products intended to tell your boss or your teacher how you're feeling. Guest: Kate Kaye, reporter for Protocol Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/13/202220 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is Free Speech Online Just a Myth?

A conversation with one of the smartest First Amendment lawyers in the country. Guest: Jameel Jaffer Host: Lizzie O'Leary Thanks Avast.com! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/8/202226 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can the Internet Rescue Abortion Access?

The pandemic changed the way abortion care could be provided online. So what happens now? Guest: Dr. Mai Fleming, family medicine physician and Fellow with Physicians for Reproductive Health. Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/6/202220 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Fantasy of Internet for All

Can Starlink ever fulfill its promise of connecting the world, especially places left behind by traditional internet? Or will it be just another toy for the rich?  Guest: Meaghan Tobin, reporter at Rest of World Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/1/202219 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Elon Wants With Twitter

Twitter is the platform of choice for politicians, journalists, academics, and many other agenda-setters. Twitter influences conversations that take place in newsrooms and statehouses. What happens if the company’s placed in the hands of a pugnacious, provocative plutocrat like Elon Musk? Guest: Will Oremus, tech reporter for the Washington Post Host: Seth Stevenson Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/29/202223 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

A New High-Tech Weapon in Ukraine

The conflict between Ukraine and Russia is uncovering new wartime applications for facial recognition technology. Guest: Aric Toler, director of research and training at Bellingcat Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/24/202222 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

The COVID Data Disaster

Are we facing down yet another COVID wave right now? Does it matter? Guest: Katherine Wu, staff writer for The Atlantic Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/22/202225 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

How TurboTax Tricks Taxpayers

How did Intuit build its TurboTax empire? Guest: Justin Elliott, reporter for ProPublica Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/17/202222 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

Elonnnnnnnnnnnnn!

Is Musk's bid to take Twitter private a genuine attempt to mold the social network in his image? Or is he just going to have some fun, make some money, and walk away? Guest: Felix Salmon, host of Slate Money and chief financial correspondent for Axios Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/15/202220 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

Uber Makes Nice With Cabs

The rideshare company's founder once called taxis “evil.” Now, Uber might need them to survive. Guest: Preetika Rana Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/10/202222 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

Elon Trolls the SEC

With 9.1% ownership of Twitter—and a board seat—Elon Musk is the new master of Twitter's future. Why did the wealthiest man in the world just take over the world's most influential platform? Guest: Ranjan Roy, writer of the Margins newsletter Host: Lizzie O'Leary  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/8/202223 minutes, 29 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Conversation With Europe's Top Tech Cop

For nearly a decade, Margrethe Vestager has led Europe's efforts to rein in big tech. One newspaper article described Vestager as putting the fear of God into Silicon Valley. How is she thinking about fairness in tech in 2022? Guest: Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission for a Europe fit for the Digital Age  Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/3/202221 minutes, 47 seconds
Episode Artwork

The White House's Favorite Tech Billionaire

Why did Ex-Google CEO Eric Schmidt spend over a decade building relationships with the most powerful Democrats in America? Guest: Alex Thompson, reporter at Politico Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/1/202223 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Cost of Going Off-Grid

Going off-grid can seem appealing in lots of ways. But are there consequences if everyone unplugs from the system? Are there costs we haven’t considered? Guest: Ivan Penn, renewable energy correspondent for the New York Times Host: Seth Stevenson Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/27/202222 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why the Zelensky Deepfake Failed

The FBI warned that Russia would use deepfakes to support its invasion of Ukraine. Are they missing the real threat? Guest: Noah Giansiracusa, professor of math and data science at Bentley University. Host: Seth Stevenson Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/25/202224 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Startup Delivering Adderall

In just two years, the mental-health startup Cerebral has grown to operate in 50 states, registered more than 200,000 patients, and reached a $4.8 billion valuation. Has it prioritized growth over patient care? Guest: Caleb Melby Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/20/202219 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Hong Kong’s Covid Crisis

Hong Kong's zero-COVID policy got enviable results, but inadvertently set the stage for disaster. What will it take to change course? Guest: Dr. Karen Grépin, Associate Professor at the School of Public Health at the University of Hong Kong Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/18/202224 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Minnesota Spied On Protesters

When Minnesota's Operation Safety Net, a coordinated effort among nine Minnesota law enforcement agencies, was announced in February 2021, its mission was to ensure the trial of Derek Chauvin would proceed peacefully. It also promised to protect people's right to gather and demonstrate peacefully. Did Operation Safety Net keep its promise? Guest: Tate Ryan-Mosley, reporter for MIT Tech review Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/13/202221 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Putin's Internet Crackdown

Vladimir Putin has always regarded the internet with suspicion. Now, with western tech companies pulling out of Russia and control of the war narrative slipping, he sees an opening. Will Putin wall off Russia from the rest of the digital world? Guests: Yana Pashaeva, Moscow-based journalist Justin Sherman, fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Cyber Statecraft Initiative Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/11/202231 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Your Retina Needs a Software Update

Second Sight restored partial vision to hundreds of patients around the world through retinal implants. Then, on the verge of bankruptcy, they abandoned the project. Now, over 300 patients with Second Sight technology in their bodies are asking: what will happen to us? Guest: Eliza Strickland, senior editor at IEEE Spectrum Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/6/202223 minutes, 55 seconds
Episode Artwork

Ukraine’s Information War

Up against one of the world's most effective propaganda operations, Ukraine has taken control of the online narrative. With Russian troops closing in, how important is winning the information war? Guest: Casey Newton, writer at Platformer Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/4/202223 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

Peter Thiel, Patron of the Populist Right

Peter Thiel spent the better part of two decades molding the tech industry in his image. Now, he's leaving Facebook behind and turning his attention to politics. Is Thiel the next kingmaker for the populist right? Max Chafkin, writer for Bloomberg and is the author of The Contrarian: Peter Thiel and Silicon Valley's Pursuit of Power Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/27/202224 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

Russia's Other Battlefront

For seven years, Ukraine has served as a virtual testing ground for a generation of cyber weaponry capable of taking down power grids, networks, and supply chains. With an invasion of Ukraine underway, will these weapons come into play? Guest: Andy Greenberg, senior writer at WIRED and the author of the book Sandworm: A New Era of Cyberwar and the Hunt for the Kremlin's Most Dangerous Hackers  Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/25/202225 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

The COVAX Fantasy

Over two years into the pandemic, much of the world remains either unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, or lacking access to mRNA vaccines entirely. How did the leading effort to vaccinate the world go so wrong? Guest: Achal Prabhala, coordinator of the AccessIBSA project and a fellow of the Shuttleworth Foundation, in Bangalore. Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/20/202229 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

"Rampant Racism" at Tesla

Last week, California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing sued Tesla. It accuses the electric vehicle maker of fostering a workplace rife with racism and discrimination. What's happening inside Tesla's Fremont plant? Guest: Dana Hull, reporter for Bloomberg Host: Lizzie O'Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/18/202223 minutes, 4 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Rise of a Fast Fashion Juggernaut

In just a few short years, the Chinese fast fashion company Shein upended the way countless young women shop online. It’s approach could soon shape the way everyone else shops, too.  Guest: Louise Matsakis, freelance technology reporter Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/13/202219 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Safe is the Metaverse?

Facebook’s first crack at the metaverse has a problem: kids. Underage users seem to be flooding Horizon Worlds, potentially putting themselves at risk.  Is Meta doomed to repeat Facebook’s mistakes? Guest: Will Oremus, technology news analysis writer for the Washington Post.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/11/202226 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Code That Runs Your Life

Banks, healthcare providers, and retailers around the world still rely on COBOL, a programming language originally developed in the 1960s. By all accounts the code is powerful, practical, and very rarely problematic. But the small group of people who still know the language are aging out of the workforce.  What happens when there are no more COBOL coders left? Guest: Clive Thompson, journalist and author of "Coders: The Making of a New Tribe and the Remaking of the World." Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/6/202221 minutes, 47 seconds
Episode Artwork

Spotify’s Joe Rogan Mess

For Spotify, the last month has seen a cascade of controversies around its exclusive podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. Is it time for the streaming service to rethink its role as a podcast publisher? And is it even possible to moderate podcast misinformation? Guest: Evelyn Douek, lecturer at Harvard Law School, and Affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/4/202224 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Downfall of One of the World's Biggest Brains

Ten years ago, IBM made a gamble. Through a monumental advertising and PR campaign, it promised that its AI technology–Watson–would transform the health care industry as we know it. A decade and billions of dollars later, Watson Health is being sold for parts.  What went wrong with IBM’s “moonshot?” And what does Watson’s failure tell us about the promise of AI for health care? Guest: Casey Ross, national technology correspondent for STAT Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/28/202225 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Does Matt Damon Want Me to Buy Crypto?

A recent advertisement for crypto.com, featuring Matt Damon, was met with widespread mockery online. But Damon’s ad is only the most visible example of a much broader—and more insidious—trend of celebrity cryptocurrency endorsements. Is the partnership between crypto and Hollywood really dangerous? And what separates the trend from run-of-the-mill salesmanship? Guests: Jacob Silverman, staff writer for the New Republic and Ben McKenzie, actor, writer, and director. Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/21/202219 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

Where Are The Little Kids' Vaccines?

Today on What Next TBD: What is going on with little kids' vaccines? Why don’t they seem to be a priority for the government or the pharmaceutical companies, while parents are stressed to a breaking point? We discuss with Meg Tirrell, health and science correspondent for CNBC, and co-host of the Readout Loud podcast. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/14/202222 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Aftermath of Elizabeth Holmes

Elizabeth Holmes was found guilty of defrauding investors this week in federal court. The former CEO, wunderkind, and blood mogul has been the subject of intense legal interest and public fascination ever since her company, Theranos, was beset by scandal in 2015. Today on What Next: TBD we follow-up with Rebecca Jarvis, host of “The Dropout” podcast and ABC News Chief Business, Technology & Economics Correspondent. We dig into the verdict and ask if Silicon Valley will finally confront the elements of its culture that allowed Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos to run wild with investor’s money, and patient’s health. You can listen to “The Dropout: Elizabeth Holmes on Trial” now wherever you get your podcasts. Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/7/202227 minutes, 55 seconds
Episode Artwork

Best of 2021: It’s Time to Talk About U.F.O.s

This episode originally aired in July 2021 Last week, the U.S. government released a new report that attempts to categorize 144 verified sightings of unidentified aerial phenomena, or U.A.P. They could only definitively explain one of them.  The new report signals a shift in the way we think about U.A.P. As technology has advanced and evidence of these encounters have increased, the question has become more urgent: what exactly is happening in our skies? Guest: Shane Harris, intelligence and national security reporter for the Washington Post Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/31/202126 minutes, 29 seconds
Episode Artwork

Best of 2021: Are We Getting COVID Testing All Wrong?

This episode originally aired in September. In the U.S., the PCR test is the gold standard for COVID testing. Common knowledge would have it that the test is more accurate—and therefore more effective at containing the spread of the disease—than the rapid antigen test.  What if that isn’t quite true?  Guest: Michael Mina, assistant professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/24/202133 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Carbon Capture Fantasy

Using experimental technology to pull gigatons of carbon out of the air and bury it deep beneath the Earth sounds like a bad sci-fi plot point. If things don’t change soon, it also might be one of our only options. Guest: Clive Thompson, journalist and author of Coders: The Making of a New Tribe and the Remaking of the World Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/17/202129 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Who Online Justice Leaves Behind

The U.S. civil court system doesn’t get as much attention as the criminal courts, but it would be hard to overstate its importance. In 2018, for example, 47 percent of respondents to a Pew survey said they had dealt with the system in one way or another; from eviction proceedings, to debt collection, to child-support modifications.  What happened when the pandemic upended such an important pillar of the justice system? Did new technologies fix existing problems—or just create new ones? Guest: Qudsiya Naqui, officer at the Pew Charitable Trust Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/10/202121 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did @jack Ruin Twitter?

On Monday, Jack Dorsey stepped down as CEO of Twitter. It’s not the first time he’s left the job.  Is this really the end for the man who guided Twitter through the Trump era? And how will the platform change without him at the helm? Guest: Nick Bilton, special correspondent at Vanity Fair Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/3/202121 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

Best of 2021: Inside the Subreddit That Blew Up GameStop

This episode originally aired in January 2021 The story of how GameStop went from the verge of a bankruptcy to a $15 billion market value isn’t an easy one to wrap your head around. But it helps to go back to the beginning; almost three years ago, in a subreddit called r/wallstreetbets. Guests: Brandon Kochkodin, reporter at Bloomberg Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/26/202124 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

Space Junk! (And Space Wars?)

Over the weekend, Russia tested a new weapon​​—a type of missile that can fly into space and destroy a satellite in orbit.  The test created thousands of pieces of debris, which will hurtle around the Earth’s orbit for years to come. What’s the real risk of the rapid increase in space junk? And is there anything to be done about it? Guest: Laura Grego, Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow at MIT Host: Seth Stevenson Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/19/202126 minutes
Episode Artwork

The Kid-Vaccine Holdouts

A recent poll showed that about a third of parents of younger children would get their kids vaccinated, a third would not, and the final third said they wanted to wait and see how the vaccines worked. Public health officials are asking: what will it take to convince that third group that now is the time to vaccinate?  Guests: Julie Hamill Dr. Aaron Carroll, pediatrician and professor of pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/12/202128 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Schools Surveil Your Kids

In schools across the country, tighter digital controls were put in place to keep kids on task during the pandemic. Are they here to stay? Guests: Priya Anand, reporter at Bloomberg Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/5/202125 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Are Bots Buying Sneakers?

The bots aren’t just buying cool sneakers. They’re buying concert tickets. Tickets to basketball games and Broadway shows. At the beginning of the pandemic, they were buying hand sanitizer and face masks. And later, they were booking vaccine reservation spots. Why are bots taking over certain markets? And is there anything we can do to slow them down? Guests:  Derreck Johnson, designer at Slate Eric Budish, economics professor at the University of Chicago Host: Seth Stevenson Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/29/202129 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Honey, I Sold the House to Zillow

Between April and June of this year, Zillow bought nearly 4,000 homes. And they had no intention of holding onto them. The plan was to flip houses, often and at scale, joining the ranks of companies like Opendoor and Offerpad, also known as iBuyers.  So, why did Zillow put their plans on pause last weekend? Can online middlemen really change the way we buy and sell houses? Guests:  Tony Santos, homeowner Patrick Clark, reporter at Bloomberg Host: Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/22/202123 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Return of Hacktivism

Over the last month, the domain company Epik and the streaming service Twitch have fallen prey to massive-scale hacks. The hackers revealed not just email addresses, but detailed personal information too. For Twitch, it was the entire source code for their site.  But the attackers aren’t holding this data for ransom. In fact, they don’t seem to want much of anything. What’s motivating this new wave of activist hacks? And who suffers? Guest: Drew Harwell, tech reporter at the Washington Post Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/15/202125 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will the Facebook Whistleblower Make a Difference?

The last month has seen a steady drip of leaked documents from inside Facebook, each seemingly more damning than the next. This week, the whistleblower behind the leaks revealed her identity. What motivates Frances Haugen? And can she do real damage to the social media giant? Guest: Jeff Horwitz, tech reporter at the Wall Street Journal.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/8/202126 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Instagram Does to Teens

Since 2018, internal research teams at Facebook have been studying the effect on Instagram on mental health. Their results couldn’t be more clear: Instagram is causing problems, especially for teen girls.  Why has it taken so long for their research to surface? And what can be done to improve the relationship between kids and the platform? Guest: Georgia Wells, tech reporter at the Wall Street Journal.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/1/202125 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

Are We Getting COVID Testing All Wrong?

In the U.S., the PCR test is the gold standard for COVID testing. Common knowledge would have it that the test is more accurate—and therefore more effective at containing the spread of the dease—than the rapid antigen test.  What if that isn’t quite true?  Guest: Michael Mina, assistant professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/24/202130 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sponsored: Tech Solutions that Serve L.A. Citizens with Ted Ross

The final episode of Season 1 features Ted Ross, Chief Information Officer for the City of Los Angeles. His role became more vital than ever during the pandemic, with L.A.’s 4 million residents and 50,000 employees relying on the city’s complex technological operation for support. Ted helped his city navigate the challenge with tech solutions built on principles designed to serve citizens and inspire employees: focus on people, improve lives, and lean into promising innovations. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/22/202130 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

China vs. Video Games

Recently, China restricted video game playing to just three hours a week for its young people: 8pm to 9pm, Friday through Sunday. And that’s not the only change. Over the last few months, private tutors, diehard celebrity fans, and tech giants have all faced fresh restrictions from Beijing. What’s behind this new wave of crackdowns? Guest: Brenda Goh, technology correspondent for Reuters Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/17/202118 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can This River Be Saved?

The Colorado River Basin is experiencing its 22nd year of drought. Its reservoirs are at their lowest-ever levels. The water stored in the system is at just 40 percent of its capacity. How did the situation on the Colorado become so dire? And what does the shortage mean for the 40 million people who rely on its waters? Guest: Abrahm Lustgarten, senior investigative reporter at ProPublica Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/10/202122 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Rush for Ivermectin

A medicine meant to treat parasites is the latest unproven COVID treatment craze. With warnings from the FDA, and prescribers clamping down, some are going to extreme lengths to get their hands on the drug. What’s behind Ivermectin’s sudden rise? Guest: Brandy Zadrozny, senior reporter for NBC News  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/3/202125 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Elizabeth Holmes on Trial

Elizabeth Holmes convinced countless people that her company would change the world. Can she convince 12 jurors that she didn’t intend to deceive her company’s patients and investors? Guest: Rebecca Jarvis, host of “The Dropout” podcast and ABC News Chief Business, Technology & Economics Correspondent  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/27/202126 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Will Booster Shots Make a Difference?

The Biden administration says a third dose of vaccines for all American adults will end the pandemic faster. And experts say there is evidence of waning vaccine effectiveness against mild-to-moderate disease. But globally, what’s the best use of the next available dose?  Guest: Saad Omer, director of the Yale Institute for Global Health.  Host: Lizzie O’Leary This episode was produced by Alyssa Edes. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/20/202122 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

What's Taking the FDA So Long?

Experts say that a “fully approved” designation for the vaccines could have sweeping effects. Broader vaccination mandates, inclusion for new age groups, and reassurance for those hesitant to take a vaccine without the designation. As calls for approval grow louder and more urgent, the Food and Drug Administration is yet to give its blessing. What’s happening inside the FDA as they work toward this milestone? Guest: Sarah Owermohle, health care reporter at Politico  Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/13/202127 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can America Fix Its Trains?

America used to be at the vanguard of railroad technology. What went wrong? And can the new infrastructure bill fix our broken system? Guests: Alon Levy and Eric Goldwyn of the Marron Institute at NYU  Host Henry Grabar   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/6/202120 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

I Bought It. Why Can't I Fix It?

Whether it’s a phone screen or a coffee machine, why is it so hard to fix our own stuff? And what can we do to make it a bit easier? Guest: Jason Koebler, editor-in-chief of Motherboard and contributor to the CYBER podcast Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/30/202120 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Spyware Mercenaries Hack Your Phone

This week, Amnesty International and a French journalism nonprofit named Forbidden Stories revealed that technology from a spyware firm called NSO Group is being deployed on a massive scale. The spyware, called Pegasus, gives the user access to every part of a victim’s smartphone -- notes, messages, photos, and recordings.  What’s it like for security researchers to see their worst fears about digital spying play out? And what are they worried about next? Guests: John Scott Railton, Senior Researcher at the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto Siddharth Varadarajan, Founding Editor of the Wire Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/23/202132 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

It's Hot. It's Flooding. Is This the New Normal?

Over the last month, North Americans have seen record-breaking heat, droughts, wildfires, and floods. The science is clear: we are living through the effects of climate change. Now scientists are trying to answer: is this the new normal? Guest: Daniel Swain, climate scientist at UCLA  Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/16/202124 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

So, What Happens to WFH Now?

For many white-collar workers, the full-time work from home era is coming to an end. Some are going back into offices five days a week. Many others will be expected to split the week between home and the office.  As the new rules are laid down, office workers are asking themselves: do we want work to go back to the way it was? Or is it time, finally, to try something different?  Guest: Brigid Schulte, director of the Better Life Lab at New America Host Henry Grabar   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/9/202129 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sponsored: The Race to Vaccinate a Nation with Deryck Mitchelson

From Slate Studios & ServiceNow, this episode of Let’s Workflow It features Deryck Mitchelson – one of the leaders taking on the greatest workflow challenge of our time – the effort to vaccinate millions of citizens from COVID-19. As Director of Information Security for NHS National Services Scotland, Deryck manages his nation’s contact tracing and vaccination systems, and shares his unique perspective on the systems and technology necessary to turn vaccines into vaccinations. Listen and subscribe to Let’s Workflow It wherever you get your podcasts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/6/202130 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

It’s Time to Talk About UFOs

Last week, the U.S. government released a new report that attempts to categorize 144 verified sightings of unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAP. They could only definitively explain one of them.  The new report signals a shift in the way we think about UAP. As technology has advanced and evidence of these encounters has increased, the question has become more urgent: What exactly is happening in our skies? Guest: Shane Harris, intelligence and national security reporter for the Washington Post Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/2/202125 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Welcome to Bitcoin Beach

For nearly two years, an unprecedented experiment has been taking place in the town of El Zonte in El Salvador. Funded by a mysterious donor, the town’s residents built a Bitcoin economy, using the cryptocurrency to purchase just about anything.  Now, El Slavador has passed a new law making it the first country to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender. Can they replicate El Zonte’s success at a national scale? Guest: Ezra Fieser, reporter at Bloomberg Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/25/202125 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Cops Are Doing With Your DNA

Ever since police used a DNA platform called GEDmatch to crack the Golden State Killer case in 2018, police departments around the country have rushed to use genetic genealogy to crack their own cold cases. The result? Hundreds of violent cases solved.  So--why are some states passing new laws to limit this new technology? Guest: Nila Bala, senior staff attorney at the Policing Project at NYU Law.  Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/18/202125 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Space Billionaires Cost Us

Over the last decade, billionaires like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and Richard Branson have come to embody the future of space travel and exploration. What does it mean when the ideas and ambitions of a few powerful men come to dominate the conversation so thoroughly? Guest: Lucianne Walkowicz, astronomer at the Adler Planetarium and founder of the Just Space Alliance Host Lizzie O’Leary This episode is sponsored by Teamistry. You can listen here Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/11/202124 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

The App That Sparked a Manhunt

Two weeks ago, as wildfires burned north of Los Angeles, the crime app Citizen offered $30,000 for information that would lead to the arrest of a suspected arsonist. They had the wrong guy.  Why is Citizen offering bounties in the first place? And what does this bounty debacle say about the app’s aspirations for the future? Guest: Joseph Cox, reporter at Motherboard  Host Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/4/202128 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

Apple and Epic’s Battle Royale

After years of careful planning and public spats, Apple and Epic—the maker of Fortnite—have spent the last three weeks in court, fighting over the future of mobile gaming. What happens if, for once, Apple loses? Guest: Elizabeth Lopatto, deputy editor at the Verge  Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/28/202122 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Hackers Who Took Down the Colonial Pipeline

Last week, a hacker group called DarkSide shut down the Colonial Pipeline, which supplies 45 percent of the fuel consumed on the East Coast. Gas prices skyrocketed, people started hoarding gas, and DarkSide walked away with over $4 million in Bitcoin. How did they do it? And what makes this hack different from those we’ve seen before? Guest: David Uberti, cybersecurity reporter at the Wall Street Journal Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/21/202126 minutes, 7 seconds
Episode Artwork

How the World’s Great Vaccination Hope Crashed

The Serum Institute of India was supposed to supply vaccines not just to India, but to the entire Global South. Now, with cases surging, there aren’t nearly enough vaccines for India’s population, not to mention the many countries that are relying on it. How did such a successful institution come up so short? And what are the costs of that failure? Guest: Samanth Subramanian, senior reporter at Quartz Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/14/202124 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Oversight Board to Facebook: Nice Try

The question of Donald Trump’s banned account--to keep it blocked, or reinstate it--is one of the toughest that Facebook has ever faced. But the social network had a plan: punt the decision to its newly minted Oversight Board, a semi-independent “Supreme Court” tasked with making hard decisions about what content stays up, and what comes down.  Did that plan just backfire? Guest: Kate Klonick, professor at St. John’s University School of Law  Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/7/202123 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Tim Apple vs. Mark Facebook

There was a time—back when Steve Jobs ran Apple and Mark Zuckerberg was in his early days as Facebook’s CEO— that Apple and Facebook were friends.. Or, at worst, frenemies. But as the companies grew, so did two competing views of how the internet should work.  What led to the rift between Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook? And will Apple’s new privacy rules undercut Facebook’s vision for the internet? Guest:    Mike Isaac, tech reporter at the New York Times  Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/30/202123 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

What's Causing the Tesla Crashes?

Last week, a Tesla Model S crashed into a tree in a neighborhood north of Houston. Both men inside the car were killed. But according to police, neither of them was in the driver’s seat.  This is not the first crash in which Tesla’s “autopilot” feature has likely played a role. Should we really be trusting this technology? Guest:  Missy Cummings, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Duke University Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/23/202123 minutes, 29 seconds
Episode Artwork

Seduced by Substack

Like countless venture-funded start-ups before it, Substack is “disrupting” the media industry. The newsletter service is siphoning off high-profile talent with a promise of independence and bigger paychecks. But the platform’s influence might reach far beyond the media. Will Substack change the way we think about online creators and their audiences? Can it create a new kind of relationship between them? Guest:    Charlie Warzel, writer of Galaxy Brain  Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/16/202125 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Rise of the Therapy Apps

Since the start of the pandemic, usage of apps like BetterHelp and Talkspace has skyrocketed. These apps might make mental health care more accessible, but are the products they sell really the same as therapy? Guest:    Molly Fischer, features writer for the Cut at New York Magazine Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/9/202126 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

Introducing: ICYMI

ICYMI is Slate’s new podcast about internet culture. It’s a show for people who have a healthy relationship with the internet, made by people who really, really don’t. It’s hosted by Slate’s Madison Malone Kircher and Rachelle Hampton. Twice a week they’ll explore what’s trending at the top of your feeds, investigate the ghosts of internet past, and help you sound like the smartest person in your group chat. In the episode you’re about to hear, they take you on an all-access tour of Clubhouse, the invite-only audio app that already has millions of users, including everyone from Elon Musk and Drake to Oprah and Joe Rogan. Madison somehow ends up taking a shower with hundreds of other users? The app also doesn’t allow people to record and publish audio, so this episode will probably get them banned. If you like what you hear, or you want to be the first to know whether Madison gets kicked off Clubhouse, subscribe to ICYMI wherever you get your podcasts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/4/202128 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Fight Over Vaccine Passports

There are at least 17 different “vaccine passport” initiatives underway in the United States. And leaked documents reveal that the Biden administration fears that “a chaotic and ineffective vaccine credential approach could hamper our pandemic response by undercutting health safety measures, slowing economic recovery, and undermining public trust and confidence.”  Without coordination, a chaotic and ineffective approach seems likely. So, what can, and what should, the Biden administration do to avoid this outcome? And what are the risks and rewards of coordinating an effort that divides Americans along the lines of vaccination status? Guest:    Dan Diamond, health policy and politics reporter for the Washington Post Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/2/202126 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

The AstraZeneca Saga

Back in April 2020, AstraZeneca was hailed as a frontrunner in the race to get an effective vaccine to market. A year later, after a series of trial pauses, communication blunders, and PR problems, the vaccine is on the cusp of FDA approval.  By all accounts, the company succeeded in making a safe, effective vaccine. So why has there been so much confusion about its rollout? Guest:    Peter Aldhous, science reporter at Buzzfeed News Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/26/202126 minutes, 49 seconds
Episode Artwork

Hate, Lies, and AI

Facebook’s failure to contain the spread of dangerous misinformation is no secret. For years, the company has pledged publicly to fix the problem. But in the wake of the Capitol riots, it’s clear that there’s more work to be done. So, why isn’t the social media giant using its powerful AI to contain hate and lies? Guest:  Karen Hao, senior AI reporter at MIT Technology Review Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/19/202127 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Does Google Actually Want to Hire Black Engineers?

Back in 2014, Google released in-depth diversity data for its workforce for the first time. 1.1 percent of its tech team identified as Black. Six years later, after millions of dollars spent and a much-hyped partnership program with historically Black colleges and universities across the country, that number is up to 2.4 percent.  How did such a promising effort yield such incremental change? Guest: Nitasha Tiku, tech culture reporter at the Washington Post Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/12/202125 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Failing Lifeline for Low-Income Americans

The federal Lifeline program was intended to bridge the gap between Americans who could comfortably pay for phone and internet service, and those who couldn’t. But in the midst of the pandemic, Lifeline is falling woefully short. How did a program meant to help connect low-income Americans with phone and internet service ended up making them second-class digital citizens at the worst possible moment?  Guest:  Tony Romm, senior tech policy reporter at the Washington Post, author of “How the Federal Lifeline Program Failed Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic” Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/5/202124 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Australia’s Kinda-Sorta Win Over Big Tech

Over the last year, the Australian government has been waging a quiet war against Facebook and Google. Through a new law, it plans to force the big tech companies to pay news outlets in exchange for linking to their sites. Will this new law have the intended effect? Or will it set a dangerous precedent that cedes even more power over to the tech giants? Guest:  JR Hennessy, editor at Business Insider Australia Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/26/202123 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Texas Went Dark

Over the last week, millions of Texans have been forced to live without power or heat. At least 16 have died since Monday. In a state that’s no stranger to extreme weather and high power demand, how did it all go so wrong? Guest:  Josh Rhodes, research associate at the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin   Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/19/202123 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Clubhouse Cracked China’s Firewall

For most of the last year, Clubhouse—the audio-only social media app—has been dominated by conversations about business, branding, and Elon Musk. But as users picked up the app around the globe, something extraordinary happened.   Censors in mainland China overlooked it. And for two weeks in February, it hosted a series of unusual, unfiltered conversations. Han Chinese, Hong Kongers, Taiwanese, and Uighurs all flooded to the app to speak freely about authoritarianism, democracy, and propaganda.  Here’s what happened when the censors looked the other way.  Guest:  Melissa Chan, journalist with the Global Reporting Centre Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/12/202126 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

India Turns Off the Internet

Last week, in response to protests by farmers outside New Delhi, India, the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi restricted access to the mobile web in areas where the protests were unfolding. The move is the latest in the Indian government’s long history of throttling internet access and censoring speech online.  Why is the Modi government increasingly shutting down the internet and stifling digital dissent? And what does the party’s history of internet shutdowns tell us about India’s future? Guest:  Pranav Dixit, correspondent for Buzzfeed News Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/5/202122 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside the Subreddit That Blew Up GameStop

The story of how GameStop went from the verge of a bankruptcy to a $15 billion market value isn’t an easy one to wrap your head around. But it helps to go back to the beginning; almost three years ago, in a subreddit called r/wallstreetbets. Guests:  Brandon Kochkodin, reporter at Bloomberg Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/29/202124 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why the Vaccine Websites Suck

Most people thought developing the vaccine in record time would be the hard part. That, or shipping millions of doses at subzero temperatures to every corner of the country. But nobody--or, almost nobody--guessed that the biggest barrier between U.S. citizens and vaccination would be … online scheduling.  What went wrong with the vaccine websites? And what will it take to get them right? Guests:  Raphael Lee, director of USDR’s Health Program  Hana Schank, director of Strategy for Public Interest Technology at New America Jessica Allen Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/22/202130 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Where the Far Right Is Meeting Now

After Facebook and Twitter banned thousands of accounts in the wake of the Capitol riots, fringe groups are flocking to platforms like Signal and Telegram. With the inauguration just days away, and government officials warning of violence, QAnon believers and Stop the Steal protesters are now communicating in encrypted spaces. What, if anything, is being planned?  Guest:  Will Sommer, politics reporter at the Daily Beast Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/15/202121 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

Deplatforming the President

This week, in the wake of violent protests at the Capitol, the social media platforms took unprecedented steps to rein in the president. Facebook banned his account at least through Inauguration Day. Twitter removed tweets and locked his account for 12 hours. Will these measures really make a difference? And how is it that two CEOs came to have so much power over the president’s reach? Guest:  Danielle Citron, professor at UVA Law School and vice president of the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/8/202121 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Was This Google Ethicist Fired for Doing Her Job?

Recently, one of the world’s leading AI ethics researchers, Timnit Gebru, left Google. Google says she resigned. Timnit says she was fired. In the days since, Timnit’s departure has turned into a public relations crisis for the search giant, prompting its CEO to issue a public apology.  What happened behind the scenes at Google that led to Timnit’s dismissal?  Guest: Timnit Gebru, AI ethics researcher, and the co-founder of Black in AI.  Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/15/202024 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Everybody Sues Facebook

This week, the FTC and more than 40 state attorneys general brought antitrust lawsuits against Facebook. And they’re not pulling their punches. They are calling for Facebook to spin off Instagram and WhatsApp into independent companies. In other words, breakup. The lawsuits represent some of the most significant antitrust action in the United States in the last 40 years. Will they get results? Guest: Tony Romm, tech policy reporter at the Washington Post Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/11/202024 minutes, 16 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Hackers Hold Schools for Ransom

Ransomware attacks--when hackers break into digital systems, encrypt files, and demand payment to unlock them, isn’t new. But 2020 has seen an explosion in the frequency of these hacks, which are often targeted at schools and hospitals. Who is behind this recent spate of attacks? And is there anything schools and hospitals can do to protect themselves? Guests: Jessica Beyer, teacher at Baltimore County Public Schools Dave Uberti, cyber security reporter at the Wall Street Journal Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/4/202023 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Biden’s COVID Team

When Joe Biden takes office in two months, the federal government will take on a new stance in its fight to contain the coronavirus. The broad strokes of that strategy have been outlined in debates and on campaign websites, but now the real work begins. Two weeks ago, the president-elect appointed a team of 13 advisers to answer some key questions. How can the new government win the trust of the 73 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump? What would a national mask mandate look like? How will the different vaccines be distributed? A member of President-elect Biden’s COVID-19 council takes us behind the scenes. Guest: Celine Gounder, member of the Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Advisory Board, and host of the American Diagnosis and Epidemic podcasts. Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/20/202025 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Tough Will Biden Really Be on Big Tech?

When Barack Obama first won the White House, back in 2008, with Joe Biden as his vice president, the executive branch’s stance towards tech and tech companies was seen as cooperative, progressive, and forward-thinking. This time around, the tech giants can expect a very different relationship. Will Biden be the president to finally rein in big tech? Guest: Cecilia Kang, technology reporter at The New York Times Host Lizzie O’Leary   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/13/202024 minutes, 43 seconds
Episode Artwork

How the Gig Economy Won in California

Companies like Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash have always argued that their workers are independent contractors, not employees. This distinction has been crucial in their rise from startups to multi-billion-dollar companies. On Tuesday, Californians sided with these companies by approving Prop 22, a ballot measure that enshrines workers’ non-employee status. Why did progressive Californians side with Big Tech? And will the rest of the country follow California’s lead? Guest: Sam Harnett, Tech and Labor reporter at KQED Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/6/202022 minutes, 56 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Fight Against Election Day Falsehoods

The 2016 general election changed the way we think about information online and its power to sway results. Four years later, Americans will vote amid a surge of misinformation, collected and distorted to fit political narratives. What can people and platforms do to protect the truth in this most consequential election? Guests: Renee DiResta, Research manager at the Stanford Internet Observatory Justin Hendrix, founder of Tech Policy Press Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/30/202025 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Historic Case Against Google

It’s been 22 years since the federal government last brought a meaningful legal challenge to a big tech company. Back then, when the Justice Department sued Microsoft, the outcome changed the direction of the company for years to come. Now, the Department of Justice is coming for Google. Can the search giant resist this challenge to its role as the gatekeeper of the internet? Guest: Tony Romm, technology reporter at the Washington Post Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/23/202023 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

Facebook Flips on Holocaust Denial

Two years ago, Mark Zuckerberg held up Holocaust denial as an example of the type of speech that would be protected on Facebook. The company wouldn’t take down content simply because it was incorrect. This week, Facebook reversed that stance. Is this decision the first step toward a new way of policing speech on the social network? Guest: Evelyn Douek, Lecturer at Harvard Law School and affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/16/202025 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Landlords Have on You

Over the last decade, born from the chaos of the 2008 financial crisis, automated tenant screening has grown into a billion-dollar industry. Now, nine out of 10 landlords rely on automated tenant-screening reports, scraped from eviction history, criminal background records, and terror watchlists, to decide if they can trust potential renters. The problem? Often, the reports contain major errors, mistaken identities, and criminal records that are supposed to be expunged. Can these reports really be trusted? Guest: Lauren Kirchner, investigative reporter at The Markup Original reporting with Matthew Goldstein, reporter at The New York Times  Host Celeste Headlee Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/9/202023 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Attack on Florida’s Latino Voters

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Spanish-speaking voters in Florida have been exposed to a steady uptick in falsities and conspiracy theories. This misinformation is shared in WhatsApp groups, Facebook groups, and YouTube channels, then amplified by enormously popular local radio stations. Now there are signs that the flood of misinformation is having an effect. Groups that voted Democrat in 2016 seem to be leaning to the right. Will this onslaught of misinformation tilt the Latino vote in Florida? And if so, what does that mean for Florida’s 29 electoral votes? Guest: Eduardo Gamarra, professor of politics and international relations at Florida International University.   Host Celeste Headlee Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/2/202019 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Vaccine Won’t Be the End

As of Sept. 24, there are 42 vaccines in clinical trials on humans. At least 92 others are being developed but have not yet gone to trial. For months, the world has tracked the progression of these vaccines closely, with the expectation that once one arrives on the market, we can finally start to go back to normal. But, is that true? Does the world really look much different with an effective vaccine? Guest: Dr. Paul Offit, professor of pediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Host Celeste Headlee   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/25/202024 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did the Internet Doom a Pregnancy?

For pregnant women in the U.S., there are plenty of reasons to mistrust the medical establishment. Mortality rates are high compared to other western countries, and one-third of women in the U.S. give birth by C-section. It’s no wonder that many women turn to the internet for alternatives.   This week, the story of one woman who was drawn into a network of private Facebook groups dedicated to the idea of ‘freebirth,’ or unassisted birth. And what happens when the misinformation shared in these private groups has real-life consequences.   Guest: Brandy Zadrozny, reporter for NBC News. You can read her reporting on ‘freebirth’ here.    This episode originally aired in March 2020    Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/18/202023 minutes, 34 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Great Climate Migration Begins

As the planet warms in the coming decades, many parts of the planet that millions now call home will become uninhabitable. At first, people in these areas will move to the cities, then across international borders. This mass migration is already underway in the hottest parts of the world, and it is likely to accelerate in coming years. Just how many people will be forced to move? And where will they go? Guest: Abrahm Lustgarten, senior reporter at ProPublica Host Celeste Headlee   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/11/202021 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Limits of Filming Police Brutality

In the wake of the killing of Michael Brown in 2014, and the national protests that followed, many believed that video shared on social media, along with footage from body cameras, would reshape the relationship between police and citizens. Six years later, one thing is clear: It didn’t work. Can viral videos really hold power to account? And why do we so often put our faith in technological solutions to solve societal problems? Guests: Bijan Stephen, reporter at the Verge Ethan Zuckerman, former director, the Center for Civic Media, MIT Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/4/202024 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

QAnon Goes Mainstream

Not long ago, the QAnon conspiracy theory seemed to have lost momentum. Social media mentions had decreased. 8chan had gone offline. But since March, fueled by the pandemic and social media giants, the conspiracy has taken on new life. What’s responsible for the rapid uptake of the movement? And now that QAnon has spilled over to the mainstream, how far can it go? Guest: Ali Breland, reporter at Mother Jones   Host Celeste Headlee Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/28/202020 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Went Wrong With Contact Tracing Apps

In the early days of the pandemic, countries around the world invested heavily in new technologies that would help track the movement of the virus. Now, six months later, contact tracing apps are all but an afterthought in the fight to contain COVID-19. What happened? The U.K. provides some answers. The country put its faith in technology to contain the virus, and paid the price. Guest: Gus Hosein, executive director at Privacy International   Host Celeste Headlee Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/21/202021 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Google Search Sold Out

In the early days of internet search engines, Google set itself apart by providing a simple service. A list of links, inviting you to explore the websites that best matched your query. It was a portal to the rest of the internet. But over the last two decades, that mission has changed. Does Google search still take you to the best result for your query? Or does it point users back to its own suite of products? Guest: Adrianne Jeffries, investigative journalist at The Markup.   Host Celeste Headlee Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/14/202020 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

How One Block Got Through It

Over the past five months, city blocks have been slipping away. Bars are closed; restaurants are half-empty; retail is shuttered. As the country returns to varying states of lockdown, how long can these blocks hold on?   This week: how one commercial strip on Chicago’s South Side is weathering the pandemic.    Guests: Nedra Sims Fears, executive director of the Greater Chatham Initiative Brian d'Antignac, The Woodshop Jaidah Wilson-Turnbow, Frances Cocktail Lounge Zoie Reams, Brown Sugar Bakery     Host Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/7/202022 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

When America Can’t Pay the Rent

For the last four months, federal and state eviction moratoria have kept Americans in their apartments, even if they couldn’t pay rent. Now, with financial relief in question, and moratoria set to expire, the first of the month might look very different for millions of Americans. Guests: Emily, a resident of Chicago’s Northwest Side Mark Durakovic, principal at Kass Management Peter Hepburn, analyst at Princeton’s Eviction Lab Host Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/31/202025 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

New Orleans Without Music

More than any other U.S. city, New Orleans banks on its culture. From music to restaurants to parades, the city relies on a steady stream of tourists to support its many artists and institutions. In March, those tourists stopped visiting. And without them, the fragile infrastructure of clubs, venues, and performances is starting to collapse. Can New Orleans survive the coronavirus? Guests: Patrick Williams, harmonica player Jesse Paige, owner of the Blue Nile Asali DeVan Ecclesiastes, Executive Director of the Ashé Cultural Arts Center Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/24/202023 minutes, 14 seconds
Episode Artwork

Cities Are Running Out of Money

After months of coronavirus lockdowns, cities are taking stock of their finances. The situation is bleak. With plummeting sales and property tax revenue, American cities of all sizes may be facing a budget crisis. What happens when local governments have to cut their budgets by double-digit percentages? Will the federal government learn from the Great Recession and intervene? Guests: Minh Nguyen, owner of Cafe TH in Houston Chris Brown, Houston City Controller Mildred Warner, professor of urban planning at Cornell.   Host: Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/17/202023 minutes, 46 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is “Covid Flight” a Thing?

Tens of thousands of people leave American cities every year. Normally, they’re replaced by new arrivals seeking jobs, education, and opportunity. But in a world transformed by the coronavirus, what happens if nobody arrives to replace them? Guests: Emily Badger, reporter at the New York Times Natalie Moore, reporter at WBEZ Amanda Kolson Hurley, editor at Bloomberg Businessweek Host: Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/10/202021 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

What's a City Without the Office?

Since March, white-collar offices in major cities across the United States have stood empty. Now, with growing evidence that the workforce is equally effective at home, companies and designers are starting to rethink the office—what it looks like, what it’s used for, and if it’s really needed at all. But this wholesale reimagining of office life comes at a cost. How will the severe reduction of commuters transform American cities? Guests: John Capobianco, principal at IA Interior Architects Hannah Hackathorn, principal at Unispace Ellen Baer, BID president, Hudson Square Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/3/202020 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Hidden Side of Police Abuse

Responding to protests around the country, the New York City Council passed the POST Act: Public Oversight of Surveillance Technology last week. The bill will require the NYPD to reveal the extent of their surveillance technology deployed within the city. For the first time, New Yorkers will get a clear picture of the technology being employed to watch and trace them. Experts say to expect the worst. Guest: Ángel S. Díaz, counsel at the Brennan Center for Justice. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/26/202018 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Remote Learning Failed

In March, when schools across the country shut down, few people could have guessed that students wouldn’t return until the fall. Schools weren’t equipped to deploy remote-learning curricula, technology was in short supply, and most parents weren’t free to guide their children through lessons during the day. Three months later, little has changed. And all that time out of the classroom has taken a toll on students. Can they recover in time for the fall? Guest: Dana Goldstein, national correspondent at the New York Times   Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/19/202023 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is This the End of Facial Recognition?

This week, three of the leading developers of facial-recognition technology announced they would stop, or at least pause, selling this technology to police. The decision stems from evidence of racial bias inherent in these tools. For the researchers who first uncovered the deep-seated issues with these tools, it’s a watershed moment. Will facial-recognition technology continue to grow unchecked? Or will this week’s announcements result in lasting change? Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Guest: Deb Raji, technology fellow at the AI Now Institute. Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/12/202022 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

Your Delivery Habit Isn't Helping

In the midst of the pandemic, protests and police lockdowns, restaurants are turning increasingly to delivery apps like DoorDash and Grubhub to stay afloat. But with shady tactics, soaring fees, and deep-seated flaws with the business model of the entire industry, delivery startups may do more harm than good. Guest: Ranjan Roy, CEO at the Edge Group and writer of Margins newsletter Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/5/202020 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

Trump and Twitter Go to War

On Tuesday, after years of inaction, Twitter fact checked President Trump’s tweets for the first time. Six words were added below the original text, directing readers to outside articles refuting his claims. Two days later, the president signed an executive order that aims to change the nature of online speech, and the platforms that host it. Guest: Casey Newton, Silicon Valley editor at the Verge   Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/29/202020 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Is Elon Musk Thinking?

As the coronavirus shut down manufacturing across California in March and April, Elon Musk only wanted one thing: to start making cars again. So when local government officials in Alameda County got in his way, Musk took the fight public, and won. Guest: Kara Swisher, co-host of the Pivot podcast. Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/22/202019 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

Decoding the Flood of COVID Data

Every week, it feels like some new piece of coronavirus information dominates the headlines. Mysterious symptoms, changing government directives. This constant trickle of updates can quickly turn into a flood. How should normal people interpret this deluge of data? Guest: Emily Oster, professor of economics at Brown University and co-founder of COVID-Explained.  Host Lizzie O’Leary     Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/15/202020 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

Should You Get an Antibody Test?

Yesterday, New York City announced that it would provide 140,000 free antibody tests to residents who want to know if they have been exposed to the coronavirus. And New York isn’t alone: large-scale antibody testing is ramping up around the country. But with faulty tests flooding the market and questions about whether a positive test really confers immunity are antibody tests really worth the bother? Guests: Shannon Palus, staff writer for Slate, and Dr. Natalie E. Dean, assistant professor of biostatistics at the University of Florida. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/8/202025 minutes, 1 second
Episode Artwork

How the Crisis Could Embolden Big Tech

This week, the world’s largest tech companies posted their quarterly earnings. And—unlike most other companies in the world—things aren’t looking so bad. With the global economy reeling, and people sheltering indoors, the tech giants have an opportunity to reshape the way we live. Don’t expect them to wait on the sidelines. Guest: Elizabeth Dwoskin, Silicon Valley correspondent at the Washington Post Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
5/1/202020 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can We Really Make a Safe Vaccine in 18 Months?

There are over 60 vaccines for the coronavirus currently in development. Four of them are already being tested in humans. As researchers move at breakneck speed to find a vaccine, they’re debating breaking (or at least bending) the rules that ensure the end product is safe. How do we balance speed with safety in the rush to develop a vaccine? Guest: Dr. Timothy Lahey, an infectious diseases doctor, ethicist, and vaccine researcher at the University of Vermont Medical Center. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/24/202023 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

Can the U.S. Really Track the Coronavirus?

Before the U.S. can start opening back up, states will need to put systems in place for “contact tracing,” or meticulous tracking of the disease within communities. South Korea’s extensive tracing program has all but eliminated the spread of the virus within its borders. What will it take for the U.S. to do the same? Guests: Raphael Rashid, a freelance journalist, and Dr. Mike Reid, professor at University of California, San Francisco Host Henry Grabar Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/17/202023 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Limits of Coronavirus Predictions

As governments around the world try to predict the toll and duration of the coronavirus, they’re turning increasingly to a handful of forecasting models for answers. But many of the leading models differ drastically in their approach and methods. What do we need to know about these forecasts? And what are their limitations? Guest: Jordan Ellenberg, mathematics professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Host: Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/10/202020 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

Risking Your Life for $8.71

This week, workers at Amazon, Whole Foods, and Instacart have announced mass strikes across the country. Though demand for these services is high, pay and protection is low. What exactly do we owe to the delivery workers at the front lines of the pandemic? And with these companies hiring in record numbers, can the strikes succeed? Guests: Heidi Carrico, founding member of the Gig Workers Collective, and Johana Bhuiyan, tech accountability reporter at the Los Angeles Times.   Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
4/3/202018 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

Where Are All the Tests?

Slate Plus members get ad-free podcasts and bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence. Sign up now to listen and support our work. The United States failed to roll out widespread testing in the early days of the pandemic. Now it faces critical shortages of supplies as it scrambles to track the disease around the country. Until testing is available at scale, Americans won’t be able to return to their normal lives. So: what will it take to solve the country’s testing shortage? Guest: Robert P. Baird, contributor to the New Yorker Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/27/202026 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

Big Tech Eyes the Pandemic

Slate Plus members get ad-free podcasts and bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence. Sign up now to listen and support our work. Google has spent the last decade trying to find a foothold in the health care industry. Now they’re partnering with the federal government to build a website that will seek to address the crisis. Can Google be trusted with our medical data? Guest: Mason Marks, law professor at Gonzaga University School of Law and an affiliated fellow at Yale Law School's Information Society Project. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/20/202024 minutes, 59 seconds
Episode Artwork

What If They Close All the Schools?

Last week, the superintendent of the Northshore school district near Seattle made a difficult decision. With the coronavirus spreading rapidly in the area, she closed all 34 schools in her district and moved all classes online. But for many schools, remote learning at this scale simply isn’t an option.  With new cases appearing around the country, how will schools respond? And what happens when you send millions of students home for weeks on end? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/13/202020 minutes
Episode Artwork

Did the Internet Doom a Pregnancy?

Slate Plus members get ad-free podcasts and bonus episodes of shows like Slow Burn and Dear Prudence. Sign up now to listen and support our work. For pregnant women in the U.S., there are plenty of reasons to mistrust the medical establishment. Mortality rates are high compared to other western countries, and one-third of women in the U.S. give birth by C-section. It’s no wonder that many women turn to the internet for alternatives. This week, the story of one woman who was drawn into a network of private Facebook groups dedicated to the idea of ‘freebirth,’ or unassisted birth. And what happens when the misinformation shared in these private groups has real-life consequences. Guest: Brandy Zadrozny, reporter for NBC News. You can read her reporting on ‘freebirth’ here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
3/6/202023 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

Did Money Corrupt an A.I. Utopia?

OpenAI was founded in 2015 with a billion dollars and an idealistic mission: Create artificial intelligence that could address humanity’s biggest problems, and do it out in the open. Then came the money problems. Guest: Karen Hao, senior A.I. reporter at MIT Tech Review   Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/28/202021 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Facebook’s Supreme Court

After years of controversial content moderation decisions, from deepfakes to deplatforming, Facebook is trying something new. In January, the social network announced that its new Oversight Board, which will act as a sort of supreme court for controversial content, will begin hearing cases this summer. Could this independent board change the way we govern speech online? Guest: Kate Klonick, assistant professor at St. John’s University School of Law, and fellow at the Information Society Project at Yale.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/21/202023 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Coronavirus Tests China's Surveillance State

Over the last month, as coronavirus spread across China, Xi Jinping’s vast surveillance and censorship infrastructure went into high gear. But with outrage growing over the death of a beloved doctor, and surveillance technology under strain, the virus is exposing the limits of the Chinese Communist Party’s techno-authoritarian network. Guest: Josh Chin, Wall Street Journal reporter covering Chinese politics and tech Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/14/202020 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

Iowa’s App-ocalypse

On Monday, the Iowa caucuses went off the rails. As the hours stretched into days, and still the results remained unclear, a new piece of election technology was identified as a central cause of the delay. An app designed to make the election process speedier and more secure had the opposite effect. And its failure is symptomatic of deep-rooted issues in the way the Democratic Party develops and deploys election technology. So, what exactly went wrong on Monday? And what does it say about the party’s effort to regain its digital edge in 2020? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
2/7/202020 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Is the U.S. Scared of Huawei?

Recently a special delegation of senior Trump administration officials arrived in the U.K. Their mission? To convince prime minister Boris Johnson to bar Huawei from their new 5G network. Why is the U.S. so keen to influence Britain’s decision on 5G? And now that the U.K is officially withdrawing from the European Union, how will they manage competing pressures from the U.S. and China? Guest: Dan Sabbagh, defense and security editor at the Guardian.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/31/202020 minutes, 27 seconds
Episode Artwork

Which Tech Companies Are Doing the Most Harm?

Last week, Slate published The Evil List, an expansive attempt to document the most concerning tech companies around the world, according to the experts. Some you’ve heard of, some you probably haven’t, and some you almost certainly use every day. Which of these deserve our attention? And why? Guests: Mutale Nkonde, public interest technologist and fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society Felix Salmon, chief financial correspondent at Axios and host of Slate Money Lindsey Barrett, staff attorney and teaching fellow at the Institute for Public Representation Communications & Technology Clinic.    Host Lizzie O’Leary Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/24/202023 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Silicon Valley Dream Was Always a Fantasy

In 2013, Anna Wiener moved from New York to San Francisco to join the city’s booming tech scene. Over the course of four years, she worked at three companies: an e-book startup, a data analytics company, and an open-source software platform. Then, her infatuation with the tech industry took a turn. On this week’s show, an insider’s perspective on the intoxicating promise and disappointment of Silicon Valley during the mid-decade boom. Guest: Anna Wiener: author of Uncanny Valley and contributing writer for the New Yorker.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/17/202024 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

How Targeted Ads Started Watching Us All

In 2019, for the first time, more advertising money went toward targeted digital ads in the U.S. than on radio, television, cable, magazine, and newspaper ads combined. The moment was the culmination of a decadeslong journey that has completely transformed media, politics, and privacy. How did the targeted ad come to hold so much power? And what did we lose along the way? Guest: Siva Vaidhyanathan, professor of media studies at the University of Virginia. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/10/202020 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

Do Algorithms Make Sentencing Fairer?

Around the country, states are employing algorithms to help reduce prison populations and predict recidivism. This week, we hear from a Wisconsin judge with serious reservations about the algorithm used in his state. Also: a deep dive into Virginia's risk-assessment algorithm and the surprising results of its implementation. Guests: Nicholas McNamara, judge on the circuit court of Dane County, Wisconsin. Jennifer Doleac, associate professor of economics at Texas A&M and director of the Justice Tech Lab.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
1/3/202020 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Landmark Privacy Law Takes Effect. Now What?

On January 1st, a new law will grant Californians the right to see, delete, and stop the sale of personal information collected by tech companies. But the impact of the bill may reach far beyond California. How does this landmark law affect the rest of the country? And will it set the stage for national privacy legislation?   Guest: Hayley Tsukayama, Legislative Activist at the Electronic Frontier Foundation Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/27/201919 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

Ring: Your Doorbell Is Watching

Back in 2013, an entrepreneur named Jamie Siminoff appeared on Shark Tank. He was seeking an investment in a new product he was calling Doorbot, a smart doorbell that would make answering the door more convenient and users’ lives “more connected.” Six years later, Doorbot is now Ring, an Amazon-owned home-security system that partners with more than 600 police departments around the country. How did Doorbot become Ring? And what are the consequences of placing surveillance cameras on front doors around the country? Guest: Caroline Haskins, technology reporter at Buzzfeed.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/20/201920 minutes, 37 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside The Influence Economy

Over the past decade, the world of influencers has grown from a fringe marketing movement to a multibillion-dollar industry. Now, tactics and strategies originally developed by influencers can be found across industries, from health care to politics to higher ed.    What’s behind this meteoric rise? And why do we misunderstand a movement that Taylor Lorenz calls “a fundamental shift in society”?   Guest: Taylor Lorenz, internet culture reporter for the New York Times  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/13/201919 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

What Is Google After Larry and Sergey?

On Tuesday, Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page announced that they are stepping down from their respective roles as president and CEO of Alphabet, Google’s parent company. The move will leave Sundar Pichai in charge of both Google and Alphabet.    With pressure mounting from unhappy employees, antitrust regulators in Europe, and the Trump administration, Pichai takes the helm at a crucial moment in the company’s history. Will he be up to the task?   Guest: Mark Bergen, technology reporter at Bloomberg Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12/6/201919 minutes, 50 seconds
Episode Artwork

Is TikTok Really a National Security Threat?

TikTok now has over 1.5 billion downloads, putting it in the company of social media giants like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. While all of these companies have faced scrutiny from lawmakers in one form or another, TikTok is getting attention for its Chinese ownership as some fear that Beijing could use data uploaded to the platform for counterintelligence purposes. Is there a real reason to be concerned? Or is this just fearmongering about a geopolitical rival?   Guest: Drew Harwell, technology reporter for the Washington Post.    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/22/201922 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

How WhatsApp Got Hacked

Recently, Facebook filed a lawsuit against a little-known Israeli spyware firm called NSO Group. Facebook is accusing NSO of supplying technology that enabled a hack of 1,400 WhatsApp accounts.    But NSO’s reach goes far beyond a few thousand phones. Governments around the world purchase its powerful technology. Some use it to “lawfully hack” the devices of criminals and terrorists. But others use it more broadly, tracking the communications of activists, journalists, lawyers, and dissidents.   What does the WhatsApp lawsuit mean for the spyware industry? And why are governments lining up to buy these products? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/15/201922 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Uber Drivers Who Don’t Want to Be Employees

California recently passed a law that would classify rideshare drivers across the state as employees, rather than contractors. Among many other benefits, they’d be allowed to unionize, collect overtime pay, and take sick leave.   So why are so many drivers against it?   Guest: Harry Campbell, former Uber driver and founder of The Rideshare Guy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/8/201918 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Price of Automating Aviation

This week, Boeing’s CEO Dennis Muilenburg appeared in front of Congress. He was there to answer questions about what his company knew, and when, before two 737 Max airplanes crashed and claimed the lives of 346 people.  But beyond the planes’ technological failures is another key issue: the way pilots react when automated systems go wrong.    Guest: Jon Ostrower, Editor in Chief of The Air Current  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11/1/201917 minutes, 38 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Facebook's Political Ad Mess

Over the last week, Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg have been under fire for declining to fact-check political ads. But a former insider says this is the wrong debate to be having—and it misses a more fundamental problem: Facebook’s business model itself.   Guests: Yael Eisenstat, former head of global elections integrity operations at Facebook and Charlie Warzel, an opinion writer at the New York Times. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/25/201921 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Announcement: What Next: TBD

Hey If Then listeners! As of now, the new Slate podcast What Next: TBD will be taking over this feed. What Next: TBD is a weekly analysis with host Lizzie O’Leary of how technology is impacting our lives, and where we’re headed. From fake news to fake meat, algorithms to augmented reality, we’ll be examining the often hidden forces shaping our world, and we’ll talk to the people who are studying those forces, impacted by them, and creating them. What Next: TBD is a spinoff from the Slate daily news show What Next. If you’re not already subscribed, go find it in your podcast app: there you’ll find the brilliant Mary Harris every Monday through Thursday to help you make sense of the news, sifting through the frenetic cascade of headlines to go deep on one story at a time. Then you’ll get this show, What Next: TBD, on Fridays. So listen here, or get all of Slate’s morning news in the What Next feed, starting tomorrow, October 25th. See you then! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/24/201954 seconds
Episode Artwork

Smash Bros Side Hustlers

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/16/201941 minutes, 28 seconds
Episode Artwork

The People Who Hold The Internet Together

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/9/201943 minutes, 45 seconds
Episode Artwork

What it Takes to Study Online Harassment

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
10/2/201941 minutes, 16 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Surveillance Is Coming From Inside The (Smart) House

Host Shannon Palus talks to Roxanne Leitao, a UK-based designer researching ways to make the smart home gear safer for victims of domestic abuse. They’ll discuss the ways that smart thermostats can be used to gaslight victims, the security measures that can help everyone in a home have agency, and the reason why smart home tech that’s hard to understand is all the more dangerous. They also touch on her other research in designing gig economy platforms that reduce the potential for bias against workers.  Podcast production by Justin D. Wright. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/25/201938 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

Breaking Away From Google

Host Aaron Mak discusses with journalist Nithin Coca his attempt to abstain from using any Google products in his daily life.  They discuss why he did it, the useful alternatives he found for specific apps, the quirks of using different tools abroad, and the surprising benefits he found in starting over.  They also speculate on whether or not a normal consumer could sustainably do the same thing, and what that means for the state of the industry. After the interview, host Aaron Mak joins co-host Shannon Palus for this week’s edition of “Don’t Close My Tabs.”  Podcast production by Justin D. Wright. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/18/201942 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Case For The Vape

Host Shannon Palus discusses how today’s vaping panic is connected to the rise of the cigarette with Jacob Grier, author of the new book The Rediscovery of Tobacco: Smoking, Vaping, and the Creative Destruction of the Cigarette. Grier argues for a nuanced view of tobacco and nicotine’s place in America, and just how much parents should worry if their teen comes home with a Juul. They’ll also discuss why Sweden’s solution for tobacco risk reduction serves as an enviable model. After the interview Shannon Palus joins co-host Aaron Mak for this week’s edition of “Don’t Close My Tabs.”  Podcast production by Justin D. Wright. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/11/201937 minutes, 33 seconds
Episode Artwork

Inside Uber

New York Times technology reporter Mike Issac discusses his new book Super Pumped: The Battle For Uber, which traces Uber’s rapid rise and fall under co-founder Travis Kalanick.  He and host Aaron Mak talk about Uber’s fraught relationship with the media, how public perception of the company enabled one of its competitors to stave off extinction, the necessary paranoia required to investigate the company, and how Kalanick’s particular style of leadership helped transform transportation around the world – for better or worse.  After the interview Shannon Palus joins the show for this week’s edition of “Don’t Close My Tabs.”  Podcast production by Justin D. Wright. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9/4/201936 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Cosmetic Gene Editing Gone Awry

Host Shannon Palus explores a future in which high school girls stay atop the social hierarchy by editing their genes, giving themselves purple eyes, and glittery skin. That’s what fiction author E. Lily Yu imagines 2060 is like in her short story, Zero In Babel, which was published on Slate as part of the Future Tense Fiction Series. Shannon and producer Cameron Drews read and excerpt of the story, and then Shannon speaks to Yu about her creative process.  After the interview Aaron Mak joins the show for this week’s edition of “Don’t Close My Tabs.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/28/201940 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Your DNA is Public Information

Aaron Mak learns about how law enforcement is using public genealogy websites to crack cold cases. His guest is Nila Bala, Associate Director of Criminal Justice Policy at the R Street Institute, which is a think tank whose mission is to find solutions to complex policy problems. Bala is also a former public defender. She says while it’s great that criminals are being brought to justice, there should be more rules in place to limit false positives and prevent privacy violations.   After the interview, Shannon Palus joins the show for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/21/201938 minutes
Episode Artwork

The Allure of Smart Guns

In this episode Shannon Palus learns about personalized guns, sometimes referred to as “smart” guns. Her guest is Cassandra Crifasi, Deputy Director at the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy & Research. More specifically, Crifasi is an epidemiologist focused on policies, procedures, and practices that prevent injury. She says personalized firearms are great for keeping kids and thieves away from guns, but they do nothing to prevent homicides and suicides by gun owners themselves. After the interview Aaron Mak joins the show for this week’s edition of “Don’t Close My Tabs.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/14/201935 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

China’s Cyber War Against Hong Kong

In this episode Aaron Mak learns about all the ways China is using cyber warfare to disrupt the efforts of protesters in Hong Kong. His guest is Nick Frisch, a fellow at Yale’s Information Society Project and a scholar of media and technology in the Chinese speaking world. Frisch was recently in Hong Kong as a fellow at the Journalism and Media Studies Center at Hong Kong University.  After the interview, Shannon Palus joins the show for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8/7/201932 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Chemists Spill the Science of Skincare

In this episode Shannon Palus talks to Victoria Fu and Gloria Lu, co-founders of Chemist Confessions. Their goal is to help us all cut through the marketing buzzwords of the skincare industry, and understand some of the actual chemistry behind the products we use.  After the interview, Aaron Mak joins the show for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/31/201935 minutes, 39 seconds
Episode Artwork

Why Facebook Can’t Just Create a Currency

In this episode Aaron Mak looks into Facebook’s plan to create a global cryptocurrency called Libra. For an expert opinion, he turns to Chris Brummer, a law professor at Georgetown University Law Center and the host of the podcast Fintech Beat. Brummer testified before the U.S. House of Representatives last week to explain why Facebook is jumping the gun with its proposal.   After the interview, Shannon Palus joins the show for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.   Slate Plus members get bonus segments and ad-free podcast feeds. Sign up now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/24/201936 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Prime Day Comes but Once a Year

In this episode, Shannon Palus talks about the journalistic ethics of Amazon affiliate links with Jacqui Cheng, former Editor-in-Chief of Wirecutter and current Editor-in-Chief of Music at WQXR in New York. As Cheng explains, it’s possible for news organizations to make money from Amazon links without turning into a shill for a giant company.   After the interview, Shannon talks to Aaron Mak for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/17/201928 minutes, 8 seconds
Episode Artwork

ICE’s Reckless Use of Facial Recognition Tech

In this episode, Aaron Mak talks about federal law enforcement's use of facial recognition technology with Jake Laperruque. He’s Senior Counsel at The Constitution Project, which is part of the Project on Government Oversight. According to The Washington Post, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and FBI officials have been partnering with state DMVs to scan through millions of drivers license photos. Jake explains the civil liberties implications of the practice and suggests regulations that might provide some level of oversight. After the interview, Aaron talks to Slate’s own Shannon Palus for this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/10/201934 minutes, 30 seconds
Episode Artwork

Healthcare via Video Chat

In this episode, Shannon Palus explores the growing telehealth industry, where doctors and patients connect via video chat or sometimes just a secure message system. To figure out the benefits and potential drawbacks of telehealth, Shannon talks to Roy Schoenberg, president and CEO of American Well, one of the first big players in the space.  Then Shannon talks to Slate writer Aaron Mak in this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7/3/201937 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Tech Journalism Took A Critical Turn

In this episode, April Glaser catches up with her former co-host Will Oremus. Then the two of them are joined by Future Tense editor Torie Bosch and New York Times opinion writer Farhad Manjoo to discuss why tech journalism has become far more critical in recent years. Plus, April and Will discuss futuristic science fiction scenarios on this week’s edition of Don’t Close My Tabs.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
6/26/201944 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

When a Scooter Makes More Sense Than a Car

In this episode, guest host Henry Grabar looks at how Zillow is trying to disrupt the real estate business—and why it might work in some cities but not others.  Then Horace Dediu