Monday through Friday, Marketplace demystifies the digital economy in less than 10 minutes. We look past the hype and ask tough questions about an industry that’s constantly changing.
Rural communities are slow to adopt EVs — but a national charging network depends on them
Sales of electric vehicles have really picked up in the last year or so, but at just shy of 6% of all cars sold in the U.S. They’ve still got a long way to go before they hit mass adoption, like the long way to go to find a charger in many areas of the country. There are currently about 100,000 public chargers in the U.S. The federal government wants to reach about half a million chargers by the end of the decade, and the bipartisan infrastructure bill includes billions of dollars to help make that happen. Reporter Rae Solomon of KUNC in Colorado has this story about how rural areas fit into the electrification plan.
How two cases headed to the Supreme Court could change the internet
Earlier this week, the Supreme Court announced it was putting off hearing a pair of highly anticipated cases that could fundamentally change social media as we know it The cases concern laws in Florida and Texas, pushed by conservatives in those states, which basically make it illegal for social media platforms to block or hide content – like say from a former president – even if the post violates the companies’ terms of service. Both laws have been blocked from taking effect while the rest of the country waits for the high court to weigh in. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Daphne Keller, director of the Program on Platform Regulation at Stanford’s Cyber Policy Center, about why these cases could be consequential.
Amazon is remaking small businesses in its own image, report says
Amazon might seem anathema to small business, but the fact is, third-party sellers account for the majority of the e-commerce giant’s sales. These sellers range from independent artisans and designers to opportunistic resellers of products from big-box stores. A new report from the nonprofit Data & Society examines how Amazon is helping, hurting and generally transforming the small business retail model. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Moira Weigel, the author of the report and a professor at Northeastern University. She described the effect Amazon has on small businesses as a “trickle-down monopoly.”
Need some Econ 101? Sign up for our Marketplace Crash Course and get weekly lessons to complete at your own pace!
Carbon capture needs to scale up to make a dent in the climate crisis
A plant in Iceland recently became the first large-scale facility to remove carbon dioxide from the air on behalf of corporate clients paying to reduce their carbon footprints. The Climeworks operation uses a process called direct-air capture, or DAC. Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Aniruddh Mohan, a postdoctoral fellow at the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment at Princeton University. He said the technology could be key to averting the worst of climate change.
It’s in Big Tech’s DNA to overhire in the boom and deflate in the downturn
The mea culpas from tech CEOs announcing massive job cuts have become a familiar refrain: “We hired too many people.” “We were much too optimistic.” “This did not play out the way I expected.” That’s a mashup of statements from Salesforce, Stripe and Meta. The tech industry continues to shed jobs: Google and Microsoft announced thousands of layoffs last week and Spotify this week. So, why did so many tech companies make the same mistake of overhiring? Marketplace’s Meghan McCarty Carino spoke with Anup Srivastava, a Canada research chair and professor at the University of Calgary. He said going big during boom times is baked into the business model of the industry.
How solar panels might help fix California’s drought
A California project that’s harnessing solar power to save water may seem a bit counterintuitive, given the dousing the state just received from a series of giant storms. But most of the state is still technically in a drought. That trend is expected to only intensify in the long term because of climate change, as warmer average temperatures increase evaporation. Take California’s vast system of open canals, which transport water across the state from reservoirs to agricultural lands and metropolitan areas. Scientists at the University of California, Merced, estimate that the waterways lose tens of billions of gallons of water to evaporation every year. A new project aims to shield the flows from the heat and sun by covering canals with solar panels while helping the state meet its renewable energy goals.
Concise Tech News
I wake up to Marketplace Tech every weekday early morning on KPCC in Los Angeles. This is an excellent podcast to keep abreast of the ever-evolving science & technology disciplines. Kimberly and the Team interview experts in their field with relevant probing questions. Definitely worth the few minutes of your time!
Excellent supplemental resources too
Kimberly Adams does an excellent job coherently and fully reporting on topics but also gives necessary focus to resources beyond the reporting. Today's episode on Apple Safety Check was particularly good in this, sharing resources for victims of domestic abuse & stalking, as well as organizations working to keep privacy in tech front and center. Well done, Kimberly and team!
Kimberly is an excellent new host
Kimberly has taken over hosting Market Place Tech podcast from Molly Wood. Her voice is clear and reporting has continued to engage with fabulous short stories. Glad to hear PODCAST continues to thrill on all things technology.