In tomorrow’s Servant of Pod… Crooked Media chief content officer Tanya Somanader joins the show this week.
Quick point of context: we recorded this interview on January 4, the day before the Senate runoffs in Georgia… and two days before the insurrection at the Capital. Obviously, the conversation was designed with the ambiguity around the Georgia outcomes in mind, and without any idea that the latter would happen. Still, I don’t think this affects the actual substance of the conversation one bit, though I suspect the tone would’ve been a little different if we had taped, say, last Friday.
In any case, I went into the interview with the intent to unpack an obvious question about Crooked Media, the political media company founded by former Obama staffers at the start of the Trump presidency: what’s it going to look like in an America where the Democrats control the House, the Senate, and the White House? (Albeit with thin margins, of course.)
Of course, that question is based on several premises that can be hotly debated, chiefly the notion that Crooked Media is supposed to be some avatar on some variation of the so-called “Resistance” during the Trump era. Indeed, those premises were formed on top of an even broader query I’ve long held about the company: what is Crooked Media supposed to be in the first place, anyway? A left-wing podcast-first mirror to right-wing talk radio? A somewhat unprecedented blend of a conventional media company and a direct organizing vehicle? And how does the company’s growing adventures with entertainment products more generally — see, among others: Wind of Change — fit into all this?
I brought these questions to Somanader, who joined Crooked Media in the summer of 2017 after serving in the Obama White House. You can find Servant of Pod on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or the great assortment of third-party podcast apps that are hooked up to the open publishing ecosystem. Desktop listening is also recommended. Share, leave a review, so on.
Issue 288, published January 12, 2021
I run this thing.