Tuesday, July 16, 2013

No Agenda

By Pauly
Los Angeles, CA

The No Agenda Podcast is something that I got introduced to by @UNOlker (from This Week on Lot music podcast fame). He recommended No Agenda as a media deconstruction podcast would be right up my alley. I was living in San Francisco at the time and dabbling in activism, so it was a perfect storm for me to get into it, especially because I had huge chunks of unfettered time to listen to a three-hour long podcast... twice a week.

The No Agenda podcast is recorded live twice a week (9am-noon PT on Sundays and Thursdays). I rarely catch it live and mostly wait until later that night to download it to my iTunes. Because it's so long, I end up listening to it over 2 or 3 sessions, roughly an hour each. The last time Nicky and I drove to Vegas, we listened to an entire episode (that ran long close to 3.5 hours) and it nearly lasted the entire drive from L.A.

No Agenda is the brain child of tech writer John C Dvorak and former MTV veejay Adam Curry (who in his olde age has turned very anti-establishment and aghast at MTV). They have a 2+ hour conversations sprinkled with multiple donation segments, so the show runs around three hours. They essentially play media clips and break it down. They go after the left and the right and the middle. They don't pander to either side, which is refreshing to see someone break down media consumption into Lefty Obama-bots and Right Wing fear mongers

At first glance, No Agenda sounds totally silly with "morning zoo" hijinks and sound effects, but they are trying to be super schticky. That's the biggest turn off with getting into the podcast as a new listener... because it takes you a little while to pick up on the inside jokes and understand the quirks in their personalities. You really need to give it a couple of weeks to finally get it. It took me a while before I felt comfortable with the format and understood all their references (both obscure, personal, and pop culture). I've been listening to No Agenda podcast for a couple of years now, so it's sort of like listening to two old friends have a conversation about current events and media things. These days, whenever a large media event occurs, I can't wait to hear their take on it a couple of days later after the dust settled.

The podcast is free and independent (no advertisers), which allows them to deconstruct everything without hurting their sponsors. The readers support the podcast, so you have to sit through segments in which they list names of people who donated that day. The donators are called "show producers." Great concept. Listener supported. Allows them to do this twice a week. I can only imagine how much prep work they must do to create 6+ hours of programming week after week.

Anyway, check out No Agenda podcast and learn how to break down MSM media clips.

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