Failure

How to take out democracy one video at a time.

Your host Benjamen Walker takes an ill-advised journey down the rabbit hole of the so-called, “intellectual dark web.”

Failure (prelude)

After Meghan Daum’s marriage falls apart she meets some new friends on YouTube. Also, reporter Paris Martineau tells us about a new game changing online harassment tool: the thotbot. IDW When Meghan Daum’s marriage ended, she gave up on HBO and Netflix and switched over to YouTube. She wrote about it in a Medium piece...

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The People Have Spoken

Filmmaker Astra Taylor asks “What is Democracy?” and YouTube creates the most disliked video in the history of the platform. Chapter one in the new ToE Failure miniseries. Befriended by Democracy Astra Taylor’s new film, What Is Democracy? is a philosophical quest into the meaning of a system that is in crisis. She takes us to Athens...

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Cultural Marxism Industry

In the 1930’s, Theodor Adorno fled Nazi Germany. In America, he studied the Authoritarian Personality. On YouTube, he’s the object of study in a massive conspiracy theory that many have tried (and failed)  to debunk. Chapter two in the new ToE Failure miniseries. Adorno Changed My Life In 2009, film student Georg Bach made a...

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Institutionalized

Critic Anand Giridharadas demystifies the rise of the thought leader, artist Chris Vargas rememorializes the Stonewall riots and your host clears up which side of the YouTube platform he stands on. Win/Win For many years Anand Giridharadas participated in the world of thought leaders, he did his TED Talk, he was a fellow at the...

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Failure (interlude)

Failure has always been a key concept for your host so this week we pull two stories out of the Benjamen Walker podcast archive. First a musical number about the loser behind Blue Suede Shoes and second a morality tale about the artist Paul Gauguin’s spectacular Paris blowout. Blue Suede Shoes Carl Perkins was all...

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Bad Recommendations

John Herrman EXPOSES the truth about YouTube’s paranoid style. ToE’s Andrew Callaway DESTROYS Jordan Peterson. (Must listen!!!) Chapter four in the new ToE Failure miniseries. The Paranoid Style The last time John Herrman came on the show he helped us understand Facebook. He is one of the most astute critical voices when it comes to making...

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The Greater Firewall

China’s next generation surveillance technology is being used to build out the world’s internet. But China is also exporting new philosophical and business models. Hao Wu explains how live streaming in China is powered by failures and James Griffiths explains why the free and open internet may soon be replaced by Cyber Sovereignty. Chapter five...

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Authoritarian Schizophrenia

Right wing populists have stormed the world wide web. They even have a beachhead in China. Chenchen Zhang tells us about the racism and misogyny she found on the knowledge sharing platform Zhihu. And Leta Hong Fincherexplains why patriarchal authoritarianism is central to the success of the Chinese Communist Party. Chapter six in the new...

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Operation Three-Eyed Raven

ToE’s special correspondent Chris tells us the truth about Game of Thrones, Trump, the CIA, and the importance of stories. Chapter seven in the new ToE Failure miniseries. Finale Failure The CIA has long been involved in the media, from Operation Mockingbird, in which they influenced the news Americans receive, to their long history of...

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YouTube’s Inferno

Youtube insists that it is not liable for the hate speech in its platform. This was also what the said about the copyrighted material back when it was a start up in 2006. We revisit YouTube’s history with Chris Stokel-Walker author of the new book Youtubers. Plus your host takes responsibility!   Chapter eight in...

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