Podcast of the Week: THE DAILY

podcast of the week the daily

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“I know Facebook is a terrible way for me to form my political opinions, but how am I supposed to find the time to weed through the thousands of news sources available on the internet in this nonstop world of ours?” You ask, while attempting to soothe a crying baby while washing a dish while writing a term paper. “I wish that someone would just come to my house every morning and tell me the news in a way that’s comprehensive but accessible!”

Enter THE DAILY, The New York Times’ answer to information overload and our tumultuous political climate. Host Michael Barbaro and a tireless team of New York Times correspondents and guests take on the herculean task of distilling each day’s news, every weekday, in 20 minutes or less, ready by 6 AM. And they’re kicking ass at it.

Rather than trying to cram in everything that happened in a particular day, each episode focuses on one or two main stories. These range from the hottest news stories of the day (the recent Bill O’Reilly scandal, the Syria bombing) to more intimate but relevant subjects (an undocumented man beloved by his Trump-supporting community sparks discussion after being deported, a third-generation coal miner gives his perspective on environmental impact of the coal industry). To top it all off, each episode ends with a quick “Here’s what else you need to know today . . .” segment, covering important global and pop culture events that didn’t get the full treatment.

In addition to its short runtime, THE DAILY goes out of its way to be accessible to even the most uninformed listener. Barbaro plays the role of the everyman in his interviews, never afraid to ask “Who is that?” or “What does that mean?” The THIS AMERICAN LIFE-style production value keeps the episodes palatable to casual listeners, utilizing fitting music and pregnant pauses in just the right places to keep things paced and interesting.

I’m sorry to be the one to break it to you, but you’re out of excuses for not keeping up to date on current events. Of course it’s important to draw information from a variety of news sources, but THE DAILY is a perfect entry point for anyone intimidated by the sheer amount of news available or taking an interest in global affairs for the first time.

Kate Brogden is the Television Editor at Crossfader in addition to an aspiring screenwriter with a penchant for magical realism and romantic comedies. Her proudest achievement to date is getting a friend into Disneyland without a ticket.

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