20 episodes

Award-winning journalist Charlie Meyerson talks to people about stuff. Contact: Meyerson@gmail.com.

Chicago Public Square Podcasts Charlie Meyerson

    • News
    • 3.4 • 16 Ratings

Award-winning journalist Charlie Meyerson talks to people about stuff. Contact: Meyerson@gmail.com.

    How tech-savvy author Cory Doctorow got scammed

    How tech-savvy author Cory Doctorow got scammed

    The American Dialect Society’s 2023 word of the year? Enshittification. And our guest on this edition of Chicago Public Square Podcasts, Cory Doctorow, is the guy who coined it. Hear him define it—and his harrowing explanation of how he, one of the world’s most tech-savvy authors and journalists, got scammed out of $8,000 before he could figure out what was going on. Also: The one “ironclad” rule you should follow to avoid a similar fate. And then, in this—our first conversation since this podcast from 2019—you’ll learn, among many other things, why he thinks Amazon embodies enshittification and why so many major publishers refused to consider one of his books. Listen here, or on Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or Apple Podcasts. Or if you prefer to read your podcasts, check out the transcript below. And if you’re a completist, here’s the original, mostly unedited, behind-the-scenes raw audio and video from the recording of this podcast via Zoom on YouTube. ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Help keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter. Now, here’s a roughly edited transcript of the interview, recorded March 7, 2024: [00:00:00] Charlie Meyerson: The American Dialect Society’s 2023 Word of the Year? Enshittification. And our guest is the guy who coined it: [00:00:10] Cory Doctorow: What I think is going on is that this bad idea, right?—“Let’s make things worse for our customers and our suppliers and better for ourselves”—is omnipresent in every firm. [00:00:21] CM: Cory Doctorow’s a science fiction author, activist, and oh, I’d say a very active journalist with an email newsletter he publishes daily. His new book is The Bezzle, a high-tech thriller whose protagonist is … an accountant. More on that to come. I’m Charlie Meyerson with ChicagoPublicSquare.com, which, yes, is also an email newsletter. And this is a Chicago Public Square Podcast. Cory, it’s great to see you again. What’s new since the last time you and I recorded a podcast—almost exactly five years ago this month, back in 2019? [00:00:55] CD: Well, there was a pandemic, and you know, lucky for me the way that I cope with anxiety and stress is by writing. And so I wrote nine books, which are all coming out in a string, which has left me pretty busy—but in a good way. My friend Joey Dilla says, when life gives you SARS, you make sarsaparilla. So that’s definitely where I’m at now. [00:01:18] CM: You have a daily email newsletter, you have a podcast, and you’re on this nationwide book tour now, although you’re home now in California. When do you rest, huh? [00:01:27] CD: Well, when I rest, I think about how terrible everything is, and so I try to do as little of that as possible. I mean, my family and I go off and do things from time to time. But, yeah, I have always written as a way of processing the world, and the world needs a lot of processing, so I’m doing a lot of writing. [00:01:48] CM: Did your, uh, restlessness contribute to an unfortunate happening that I think shocked a lot of readers on February 5, 2024, when it was the most-tapped item in Chicago Public Square? And I’m gonna quote you here, “I was robbed $8,000-plus worth of fraud before I figured out what happened, and then he tried to do it again a week later.” What happened? [00:02:11] CD: Yeah, that was while I was taking a rest as it happened. So for Christmas break, my wife and I, and then my daughter and my parents joined us, went to one of my favorite places in the world, New Orleans. So, we landed and needed cash. So I went to an ATM in the French Quarter, was like a, a chase ATM, and the whole transaction ran and then it threw an error and said, we can’t give you your money. I was like, Ugh, what a pain. And later on, we were walking through town and we passed a credit union’s ATM branc

    Axios Chicago’s Monica Eng and Justin Kaufmann: ‘This is a talk show in an email format’

    Axios Chicago’s Monica Eng and Justin Kaufmann: ‘This is a talk show in an email format’

    She’s worked for Chicago’s biggest newspapers and he’s worked for Chicago’s most successful radio stations. And now … they do email.Joining Charlie Meyerson for this edition of the Chicago Public Square / Rivet360 podcast, Chicago Media Talks: Axios Chicago newsletter authors Justin Kaufmann and Monica Eng. Listen on Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or Apple Podcasts. Or if you prefer to read your podcasts, check out the transcript below. And if you’re a completist, check out the behind-the-scenes raw audio and video from the recording of this podcast via Zoom on YouTube—including deleted segments like Eng and Kaufmann’s answers (at 34:50) to the question, “How did Charlie most annoy you?” ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Help keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter._____ Now, here’s a roughly edited transcript of the interview with Eng and Kaufmann. Charlie Meyerson 0:00 She’s worked for Chicago’s biggest newspapers, and he’s worked for Chicago’s most successful radio stations. And now, they do email. Monica Eng 0:08 At WBEZ they kept saying, “Would you like to write our newsletter?” And I’m like, “Are you kidding me? I’m a reporter! Stop with the insulting questions.” And now, like, I love it. Meyerson 0:20 Monica Eng is a longtime Chicago reporter who’s covered food, culture, health and the environment for the Chicago Sun-Times, the Chicago Tribune and, yes, also at a radio station, WBEZ. Justin Kaufmann’s a former talk show host and producer in Chicago at WBEZ and WGN Radio. They’ve teamed up to create the Axios Chicago newsletter, rounding up the day’s biggest Chicago news plus coverage of their passions, including food and sports. Justin Kaufmann 0:44 Chicago is a different place. It is going to be a different newsletter than Denver. It should be a different newsletter than San Francisco. Meyerson 0:52 Coming to you despite a cough, congestion and a mild fever that a test assures me do not signify COVID-19, I am a well-medicated Charlie Meyerson with Rivet360 and Chicago Public Square, which, yes, is also an email newsletter. And this is Chicago Media Talks. Justin, what did you want to be when you grew up? And how did that lead you into Chicago radio? Kaufmann 1:14 You know, it’s funny. My dad always reminds me that I was really into DePaul Blue Demon basketball when I was a kid and I would write up stories like sports stories of the games that they would show on Channel 9 at the time, like when DePaul would pay like Creighton, or Georgetown. And I would write—he showed me when I was older—like, these write-ups. So I think I wanted to be a sports writer in some form. But to be honest, I really wanted to be in radio. I love the idea I had my own— I did the announcements in high school and a lot of things to end up where I ended up to be a talk show host. So I think that that’s what I wanted to be. Meyerson 1:53 High school announcements: You and I have that in common. Monica, what did you want to be when you grew up? And how has that shaped your career? Eng 2:01 I had no idea. But by the time I was 15, and my mom was dating Roger Ebert, he said, “Hey, so do one of your kids need a job this summer?” I said, “Well, I’m not going to be doing anything but watching TV. So maybe I’ll go try this thing called being a copy clerk at the Chicago Sun-Times.” And from the first day I started working in the features department at the Chicago Sun-Times in 1985, I fell in love with it, and that’s all I ever wanted to do—be a newspaper woman or a newswoman. I did not envision I would be an emailer, thanks for calling me that. Meyerson 2:35 It’s an honorable profession. It’s honorable. Eng 2:37 There was no email at the time, which was why I had a job. You know, putting the mail in the slots at the Chicago Sun-Tim

    Food critic Louisa Chu’s vivid pandemic moment: ‘Crying so much’

    Food critic Louisa Chu’s vivid pandemic moment: ‘Crying so much’

    The most enduring memory of a restaurant reviewer through the pandemic: “Crying so much … over so many meals with gratitude and relief.” Joining this edition of the Chicago Public Square / Rivet360 podcast, Chicago Media Talks: Chef, journalist, adventurer and Chicago Tribune critic Louisa Chu—who takes us from her time as a 4-year-old worker at her family’s Chicago restaurant through her stint as a judge on Food Network’s Iron Chef America to what she’s working on next. Listen on Spotify, Pandora, YouTube, Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or Apple Podcasts. ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Help keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter.

    Stephanie Skora and A.D. Quig: Reshaping Chicago’s news and political scene

    Stephanie Skora and A.D. Quig: Reshaping Chicago’s news and political scene

    Joining this edition of the Chicago Public Square / Rivet360 podcast, Chicago Media Talks: A couple of media figures whose work is increasingly shaping Chicago’s news and political landscape. Meet A.D. Quig, a rising Chicago Tribune reporter who sees local government facing “a time of big change”; and Girl, I Guess Progressive Voter Guide author Stephanie Skora—someone unafraid to call a candidate, in her words, “a slimy fuckface—because there’s no reason not to.” Listen in your favorite podcast player, via Spotify, YouTube and Pandora, on Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or on Apple Podcasts. ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Help keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter. (Photos, counter-clockwise from right: Quig, Skora, hosts Charlie Meyerson and Sheila Solomon.)

    Pulitzer winners Hopkins and Reyes: Teamwork ‘wasn’t always easy’

    Pulitzer winners Hopkins and Reyes: Teamwork ‘wasn’t always easy’

    Their groundbreaking alliance netted them and their news organizations a 2022 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting. But that doesn’t mean they always worked together seamlessly. In this edition of the Chicago Public Square / Rivet360 podcast, Chicago Media Talks, meet Madison Hopkins and Cecilia Reyes, praised by Pulitzer judges for “a piercing examination of the city’s long history of failed building- and fire-safety code enforcement, which let scofflaw landlords commit serious violations that resulted in dozens of unnecessary deaths.” (Recorded June 13, 2022.) Listen in your favorite podcast player, via Spotify, YouTube and Pandora, on Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or on Apple Podcasts. ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter. (Photos, counter-clockwise from right: Reyes, Hopkins, hosts Charlie Meyerson and Sheila Solomon.)

    Meet the Sun-Times’ new executive editor, Jennifer Kho

    Meet the Sun-Times’ new executive editor, Jennifer Kho

    She’s the first woman—and the first woman of color—ever to serve as Chicago Sun-Times executive editor. She’s facing challenges like none before her, as the paper comes under the control of an organization primarily in the radio business. In another edition of the Chicago Public Square / Rivet360 podcast, Chicago Media Talks, meet Jennifer Kho, who joins the Sun-Times at a critical point in the evolution of the news business. (Recorded July 11, 2022.) Listen in your favorite podcast player, via Spotify, YouTube and Pandora, on Amazon’s Alexa-powered speakers or on Apple Podcasts. ■ Enjoying these podcasts? Keep them coming by joining The Legion of Chicago Public Squarians.■ And consider subscribing—free—to the daily Chicago Public Square email newsletter. (Photos, counterclockwise from right: Kho, with hosts Sheila Solomon and Charlie Meyerson.)

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5
16 Ratings

16 Ratings

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