Editor’s Note is a weekly column by FL1 News Director Josh Durso. Have a question or comment? Send an email to [email protected].
Up until very recently, I spent two hours per day in a car commuting. It was something I had done for a big part of the last three years. In a pretty significant way, it shaped my news consumption habits. On one hand, it’s in my best interest to diversify the ways I consume news, but on the other hand — audio is great, too.
In fact, it’s grown to be my preferred method of news consumption. See, it’s easy to listen to a podcast while washing the dishes, cooking, vacuuming, or as I have for a long time — driving to or from work. There are long programs, short ones, fictional shows, those about history, current events, and so, so much more.
Last week I shared my favorite pieces of evergreen reporting. The in-depth stuff that doesn’t fall into the ‘breaking news’ category. It was the reporting that our very own newsroom worked hard on. Later this week — on New Years Eve — my final Editor’s Note of 2020 will be published. I’ll share my favorite interviews from our own podcasts over the last 12 months. In the meantime, though, as a primer to round-out the holiday weekend here in the Finger Lakes — I thought I’d share some of my own favorite podcasts that have helped me stay informed during 2020.
My list is organized by average episode length, because we’ve all got busy lives. What are you listening to? Drop me an email at [email protected] to share your favorite podcasts!
Under 10 Minutes
This is a daily primer of the day’s biggest headlines every morning produced by The Wall Street Journal. It’s clean, concise, and a good way to start the day informed. [Recent Episodes]
Most people who consume podcasts know about this one, because it’s been featured so prominently on NPR radio affiliates across the country. [Recent Episodes]
Tech News Briefing
This is another podcast by The Wall Street Journal. It’s a spin-off of the What’s News podcast, but focuses on tech news. Why does it matter? With the federal government taking legal action against Google and Facebook — now is the time to understand what’s going on in the technology space. This is an easy way to stay up-to-date on it.[Recent Episodes]
This podcast is a great combination of storytelling, interviews, and analysis brought by the Wall Street Journal team. Episodes range between 15-20 minutes, which makes it a very bingable program. There’s a hefty focus on politics, business, and how the two often overlap — even during a pandemic! [Recent Episodes]
This NPR podcast is from the Planet Money family. It takes economic news of the day, and packs it down into daily episodes that are 10 minutes or less. Planet Money is a great program, as well, and in past years has been on my ‘top’ list, but fell off in 2020. [Recent Episodes]
Stay Tuned With Preet
This program typically features one long-form interview per episode. The show is around an hour long, but is broken up with Q&A and analysis from host Preet Bharara. He’s a former U.S. attorney who exited his role at the start of the Trump administration, but was a major player in prosecuting corruption in New York politics. [Recent Episodes]
For all intents and purposes this is the program that put Gimlet on the map. Gimlet was acquired by Spotify as it moved heavily into podcasting in 2019. This is one of those shows that is timeless in the sense that you can go back and listen to all 180-something episodes without getting lost. The show calls itself a “podcast about the internet.” And it’s particularly interesting for anyone who has gone down a rabbit hole exploring the weird, bizarre things that intersect between digital and non-digital life. It’s just fun. And often, a nice disconnect from the chaos of daily news. Episodes are typically less than 30 minutes long. [Recent Episodes]
This show goes deep on things you aren’t reading about every day. And does it in a way that written stories couldn’t accomplish. It features a variety of voices, and again, episodes are around 30 minutes long. [Recent Episodes]
In the final part of my ‘best of’ series, I’ll look at my own favorite interviews featured in podcasts in our network, as well as some other local podcasts of interest.