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The Unplugged Soul: A Conference on the Podcast

General Programming

  • Brown Institute for Media Innovation
  • Free and open to the public
  • Registration required. See details.
  • First come, first seated

LISTEN TO CONFERENCE AUDIO HERE ON SOUNDCLOUD A series of unprecedented freedoms – on demand software, discrete audiences, portable devices, cheap production costs, the bypassing of broadcast infrastructure and with it content restrictions – liberates the podcast from mass media's customary limitations, and podcasters are now making the most of their new territory. This conference ranges wide in its exploration of what amounts to a burgeoning new art form captivating listeners worldwide: the "impact bar" has never been higher in a culture brimming with content, but podcasters and producers have latched on to ancient verities of storytelling and the new mores of disclosure to win us over – to unplug the hyperconnected soul.


Friday, April 14:

5:00-7:00pm: Keynote Discussion

Chris Lydon & Dave Winer

Saturday, April 15

10:00-11:45: In Microphones Begin Responsibilities

Hillary Frank (The Longest Shortest Time), “Podcasts Can Change the World (At Least a Little)”

Devon Taylor (Millennial), “New Ears”

Rachel Zucker (Commonplace), “Less and Less and Less Alone”

1:30-3:15: Disrupting Story

Jeff Emtman (Here Be Monsters), “The Cult of the Story”

Bethany Jo Denton (Here Be Monsters), “A Case for the Minimalist Narrator”

Jonathan Hirsch (ARRVLS), “Storytelling vs Stenography: Truth and Narrative in the Age of Alternative Facts”

3:30-5:15: The Future of Listening

Nikki Silva and Davia Nelson (The Kitchen Sisters), “Get Close. Now Get Closer… Creating Audio Movies for the Mind"

Benjamen Walker (Theory of Everything), “Visions Come True”

  • Devon Taylor Editor
  • Bethany Jo Denton Producer and Host
  • Jeff Emtman Producer and Host
  • Benjamen Walker Producer and Host
  • Christopher Lydon Host
  • Dave Winer Software Developer, Entrepreneur, Writer
  • Rachel Zucker Host
  • Davia Nelson Producer
  • Nikki Silva Producer
  • Hillary Frank Creator and Host
  • Jonathan Hirsch Executive Producer
  • Organizer Emily Bloom Lecturer, Department of English and Comparative Literature Columbia University
  • Organizer Fin Keegan Writer and Broadcaster