- In a somewhat surprising development, Spotify started releasing The Michelle Obama Podcast on other platforms last week. It has tracked as the second spot on the Apple Podcast charts. At the moment, it’s unclear whether this windowed release approach will be applied to future seasons, should the show be renewed.
- Meanwhile, Joe Rogan said on an episode of his show last week that Spotify has not said anything to him about the recent reports of tension between the company and its employees over his content. Those comments were written up by Heavy.
- PRX’s chief content officer John Barth is retiring at the end of the year, Current reports. When asked if the timing had anything to do with PRX’s recent tumult over a former employee’s allegation of systemic racism at the organization, a spokesperson denied the characterization. “[John] felt the time was right,” the spokesperson said. “He will focus on a smooth transition of projects and relationships to best support staff.” The Current report also notes that Kerry Donahue, PRX’s director of training, is no longer with the organization as well.
- Emanuele Berry is This American Life’s new executive editor. A former editor and producer at Gimlet Media, Berry joined TAL last year.
- Add Megyn Kelly to the list of folks making “pariah podcasts,” a term Bryan Curtis so succinctly coined in 2017. Kelly launched her own “self-funded” podcast last week, characterizing it as an escape from “corporate overlords.” Sure, sure.
- Third Coast Festival is taking place virtually this year, and it has adopted an “collective pricing” system. Check it out.
- Team Coco has signed a multi-project podcast deal with Audible, now that Audible is commissioning “podcasts” (again). Here’s the Hollywood Reporter on that.
- Following the revelation that its central subject probably wasn’t actually a former ISIS member, the plot around Caliphate thickens, with the New York Times announcing that it will review the reporting in the Peabody Award-winning podcast series.
- Shout-out to the shows that cranked out emergency pods last week. Some may disrespect the emergency episode drop, but not I. This news cycle, it breaks us all.
In tomorrow’s Servant of Pod… I talk with Roman Mars, who celebrated ten years of 99% Invisible last month and is currently celebrating the publication of The 99% Invisible City, the book that he wrote with Kurt Kohlstedt, which goes on sale today.
We hit on a bunch of things: starting the show in the dark ages, Podcasting These Days, the stuff that’s been happening over at PRX, the grind of making something for ten whole years, his favorite Dischord bands (stick past the credits), and of course, his new book.
Also, the “Roman Mars” persona, of which I’ve long harbored strong belief is a persona that papers over significant spiciness from the actual Roman Mars. Have you seen some of the guy’s tweets? Shit.
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.