On the Media

Reviews For On the Media

Some stars are earned purely by the hosts’ voices alone. Both their voices sound so authoritative and sonorous, and I enjoy listening to them. But beyond that, the writing is excellent on this show and many times I have been struck by how eloquent the commentary is. The topics are very thought-provoking and the guests are interesting and informative.
While I believe everyone would benefit from listening to this program, as a former journalist I think it ought to be required listening to work in the industry. Your straight, truthful, fearless reporting is an inspiration
There may have been a time when OTM provided smart media analysis, but nowadays, it’s just a libby moral panic machine.
First, OTM is the best. But in this episode Bob says “the first voice you will hear is Julia’s”, and then Julia’s voice is not first, and when she does speak the first thing she says is “Hi, this is Julia...”
The comment about TGIF is well put! I also look forward to Fridays to hear OTM. Thanks to everyone that puts this incredible show together for the rest of us!
Thank you for helping us through the past four years and hopefully seeing us back into the light, however dim. TGIF has another meaning for me.
Always informative, always lucid. But I swear, half the appeal is hearing Gladstone consistently use the verb ‘grok’. Gladstone for President of Mars.
At its best when it analyzes coverage of other media.
Must listen.
On the Media used to hold EVERYONE accountable and would take to task irresponsible journalism. BUT NOW they have become part of the problem and have a thinly veiled agenda.
I have been listening since before podcasts were a thing and you I just hoped I caught it live on radio - well I soon made time for it every week and it continues to be the most important thing I read, listen to, or read. The variety of interviews as well as Bob and Brooke’s candor are the mix that keeps on giving. I promise every episode you will find something to love and possibly even something (or someone) to disagree with. Enjoy! (started listening in 2004ish)
This show is not alone in this but it is getting to the point where the background music is by turns so dramatic or so cutesy that I can’t even listen... This seems to be a fashion now with radio and podcasts. I really don’t understand it at all. Can anyone explain what the purpose of all the background music is for?


By LefT32
All media is biased because it is created by humans who are all biased in some way. Knowing that, media ought to be consumed as one would food in their diet. Healthy portions with understanding of what you’re putting inside you. I recommend OTM as an insightful podcast to add to your repertoire whatever direction your beliefs skew towards.
Must-listen every week.
As posted, the episode posted 11/20/2020 to Appl podcasts , “Believe It Or Not”, is jumbled. It starts correctly with the intro, moving into the first segment on pressing government officials for sources driving government edicts in response to COVID-19. But then, 3+ minutes in, it jumps to the last 3+ minutes of the closing portion of the Pete Souza interview, then the closing credits. I can jump past this premature closing, but it goes to the same last 3+ minutes of the Souza interviews at least twice. I didn’t take the time to jump past the same sequence repeatedly until the full 50:30 podcast completed, but I expect the “Groundhog Day” syndrome repeated to the end. In short: needs fixing!
OTM has a vibe and unique mojo, and swings like Ellington and Armstrong (not words usually used to describe an NPR podcast) Maybe it’s there pacing or that Brook and Bob are so darn smart. The writing and production is stunning, every week year after year. It would be impossible to compile a “Best of OTM “episode.
Really sad about this. I used to love this show’s intellectual curiosity. But in the last year or so, it’s become ideologically monotone. Ideology guides every story choice, every analysis, every take. Predictable and tedious now, especially if you don’t share the religion.
Always superbly crafted. (in detail, tone, timing, aesthetic etc) Just fabulous.
Thank you for this conversation with one of the great truth tellers!
One of the only podcasts I have listened to on a regular basis for years.
A clear presentation that goes over what’s going on without spinning it.
The 10/14/20 conversation left me confuddled. The worst part is it’s based around a book. THE book. So many simple biological fallacies and misattributions to Darwin - I feel likely there was no malice, simple failure of comprehension and understanding of current science.
BG and BG give me a bit of hope that all of the world has not abandoned reason and critical thinking. Thank you On the Media. I recommend your show to anyone and everyone who speaks of current events with either confusion or authority. You are my island of sanity and my comfort.
No one does frank, brutally honest news analysis better. Immediate and topical, there are days I know I need to listen to On The Media right away to decipher and filter out the noise and make sense of it all.
Not like I remembered. Sad to have gotten so ugly and biased. Too bad I used to like this show
A strong bias in favor of consolidated, corporate media.
Seriously? Have they run out of subjects? Paris Hilton and Reality Daiting TV? The Qanon piece was up to their usual high standards and the rest was absolute garbage.
Fifth star withheld because of the horrid noises and stressful drum beats on every intro so loud they obliterate everything said. WHY?????????
OTM is my favorite podcast. I listen religiously every week to their main episodes and the podcast extras. It truly is a great source for information on what the media is doing wrong and right and teaches me to be a more critical consumer of media. Share this podcast and donate to WNYC so they continue doing their essential work!!!


Your episode on Mr.Rogan was an absolute abomination.
I’ve had a hard time getting into this podcast, although I had high hopes bc of the topics addressed. Anyway, recent episode on joe Rogan put the nail in the coffin for me. The journalist on the topic already was biased against him from the get-go, like who is this “non-journalist” who is about host a presidential debate. Every single thing they mentioned about joe was in a negative light. They made it out as if all his guests are high or drunk, which is not true. They made home out to be this dumb muscle head who just appeals to bro- mentally. The guy has had Elon musk on his podcast just days after his baby was born. Wow. I just can’t believe what an inaccurate and poorly balanced show that was. TERRIBLE REPORTING.
I started listening to this show in March at the beginning of the pandemic. It’s been my resource for news ever since, especially since I don’t want to get sucked in and discouraged by the second to second headlines online. I appreciate that they discuss the news and how the media is sharing, or not sharing, important information. The April 24th episode, “On Matters of Time and Space,” probably got me hooked because their guest talked about the creation of time as we know it. It was relevant as many people were working from home due to social distancing, or unemployed...I know my use of the day had changed. The BLM movement was reinvigorated after that time period, layered with election coverage, layered with rampant conspiracies and misinformation. There is so much happening and I trust On The Media to help sort it out with their engaging guests and thoughtful questions.
I understand that you dont like the President and the President doesnt like the media. This would be a GREAT place for you to be, right in the middle of it and analyzing both sides. Instead you ALWAYS skew your viewpoints to the left. Its disappointing to hear what used to be a great and objective show just trying to take shots at the current administration. Too bad, good riddance to my subscription. You are living what is wrong with todays media, bias.
Imagine if reporters never took anything on face value. Imagine if reporters asked not only “who, what, what and where,” but also “why am I being told this?” Imagine if reporters had a deep appreciation for context and consistency. That’s On The Media.
I listen to dozens of podcasts regularly. I oftentimes put this one off because the subject matter is serious and requires concentration. But this is the most important. The unusual lens they take — coverage of the media covering the stories we know about — provides facts and insights found nowhere else. If I could ordain one podcast to be listened to by all Americans, it would be this.
I love OTM and have listened for years but the most recent episodes have 5+ minutes at the top of the show with clangy irritating background music competing with the show content—why?!?! Please eliminate this, it makes the show almost unlistenable.
After weekly “It’s hopeless why don’t I just end my life now?” malaise that I’m overcome by after each episode. I pull myself together and give thanks to Brooke, Bob, Katia and company for soldiering on. When I think of the sheer volume of manure that must be waded through in order to cull the choicest excrement down to a one hour show I must stop and salute you all for possessing a stronger constitution than I. Well produced, exceptionally well written. Just keep the sharp objects out of reach while listening
“Armed Right Wingers”, are causing violence in American cities??!!?? While I would not dispute this as happened, but then I’m objective. For you to say, in your title, even if qualified later in the story, shows that you lack objectivity and journalistic integrity. Yes, that commitment to neutrality you learned, of way back in college, and then committed your lives to can you remember that and say your meeting that standard. You clearly lack the morale fortitude to report anything that your click would not like to hear. How you could possibly, objectively, make the inference that violence in our cities is driven by the right wing. We all read, see the news, national, local and the black clad BLM and Antifa revolutionaries, the continuing destruction they have promoted, the disregard for the rule of law, over the last 100 days. What’s sad about it is they are primarily destroying property and lives in the very communities they are supposedly saving. It’s sad and your lack of moral courage, and obliviously fear becoming an outcast in your closed East Coast Community. Remember what made you journalist because this is just lazy work. Step outside your world, where everyone thinks the same, yes continue to hate the President, that’s fine, but do your job correctly. Joseph G. would be proud of this piece or work/propaganda. Yes, I live in the fly over zone, but no I’ve never worn a Trump Hat but I do posses moral courage and never lie to myself. Please do better than this your failing to live up to your own standards. And you wonder why people don’t trust you??!!!
I really like this show but the production and montage is getting a bit too over produced and dramatic. Please leave On The Media alone. The black and white, no nonsense, honest and always interesting version was great.
always useful
I developed a love for the thoughtful analysis and discussions of Brooke and Bob as a young 18 year old college freshman. Since then I’ve religious listened to On The Media every week throughout the last 10 years as I ventured into tech and realized I really wanted to work in mental health, went to grad school, and built a career as a therapist. Very few programs have a had such an influence on my critical thought and perspective of society. Thank you Brooke and Bob for keeping me company :)
Bob and Brooke provide exceptional insight into media to help us understand why news stories are presented the way they are. It’s my go-to show every week to learn more.
Tough as nails hosts holding the media accountable for what they’re supposed to be doing: giving us the straight story on what our government and institutions are doing and demanding accountability from them.


I subscribed because I hoped that this show would help me to understand media reporting and the backstory that informs it more deeply. My goal was to avoid bias. Was my expectation unfair? What I found is an extremely biased justification of bias.
You would think that a podcast dedicated to the media would do a story on how the Bernie campaign of 2016 was sabotaged by the liberal media including NPR. If they did do a broadcast on this ...I couldn’t find it.