Hello folks, welcome to the relaunch of the Inside The Newsroom podcast! It’s been a while since I got the microphone out, but I’m back and will be podcasting with a top journalist at least monthly from now on.
What better way to get back on the horse than have Glenn Greenwald on the airwaves, who the New Statesman recently described as among the greatest journalists of all time. We talked about what it’s like being Glenn, the mental toll of having the U.S. and Brazilian governments after you, the corporatization of journalism, where to start when writing a New York Times bestseller, and Glenn’s best advice for today’s journalists.
Say what you like about Glenn, but it’s hard to match his achievements. He believes what he believes, and will quite literally risk his life to defend his position.
“You go into journalism in order to do stories like this. If you want to be universally beloved and applauded by people in power, journalism is not the profession to choose.”
Earlier this month we celebrated the one-year anniversary of our subscription model. Read all about everything we’ve done so far, and everything we plan to build over the next 12 months. And be sure to check out my Q&A with Walt Hickey, senior data editor at Insider and founder of the Numlock News newsletter. Walt was incredibly candid about what it takes to build an audience and run a profitable business.
And lastly, we relaunched Data Corner and Election Dissection last week! Read about how the top newsrooms covered the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan from a data viz angle, as well as the latest on the consequential recent elections in Morocco and Norway.
Okay, let’s do this thing! Podcast is up top, and my post-game analysis and Job Corner are down below… Enjoy!
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Who Is Glenn Greenwald?
Glenn is a journalist, former constitutional lawyer, author of four New York Times bestsellers, and co-founder of the Hope dog rescue shelter. In 1996, Glenn co-founded his own law firm in New York City, concentrating on First Amendment and civil rights. In 2005, he became bored of being a litigator and travelled to Brazil to “figure out what I wanted to do with my life”. He immediately fell in love the country and met his now-husband: Brazilian congressman for the Socialism and Liberty party David Miranda. They currently reside in Rio de Janeiro.
Around the same time, Glenn started his own blog and began writing about mass surveillance and the changes around civil liberties in the aftermath of 9/11. In 2007, he was hired as a columnist by Salon, and then joined The Guardian in 2012. It was there that he, along with fellow friend of the podcast Ewen MacAskill, broke arguably the most impactful scandal of this generation: The Edward Snowden CIA leaks.
From there Glenn co-founded The Intercept in 2014, but resigned in October 2020 over editorial freedom. You can read all about why Glenn did so here, as well as a rebuttal from The Intercept’s editor-in-chief, Betsy Reed. Today Glenn writes about a myriad of topics on Substack, and is always an engaging follow on Twitter. Oh, he and David currently have 26 rescue dogs too.
Securing Democracy and Car Wash Scandal
Glenn’s latest book, Securing Democracy: My Fight for Press Freedom and Justice in Brazil, was published earlier this year. It details the events that led to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro indicting Glenn for his involvement in the Operation Car Wash scandal, arguably the biggest corruption scandal in history. The scandal saw former Brazilian president and clear favorite in the 2018 presidential election Lula da Silva im