On The Media

On The Media, hosted by Bob Garfield and Brooke Gladstone, is America's only national radio program devoted to media criticism and analysis, lifting the veil on how the media works.

Recent Episodes

Politically Correct

What you hear about the Paris climate agreement depends on whom you ask. We sort through the competing messages about what was achieved. Plus, how to spot an accurate election poll as the primaries edge closer; and what the GOP presidential candidates' war on "political correctness" really means. 

Take Responsibility

Some of Donald Trump's opponents have labeled him a demagogue - but are they right? And, if so, what is there to be done? Plus: Bob reflects on the media feeding frenzy in the house of the San Bernardino shooters; and the life, and self-documented death, of New York Times reporter and AIDS victim Jeffrey Schmalz.

Plaintiff Shopping

We often hear that individuals who come to symbolize major Supreme Court decisions "took their case all the way to the Supreme Court." But sometimes, such plaintiffs are taken by hand. Bob explores how shopping for the perfect plaintiff to serve as the poster child for an issue is a strategy employed by public-interest law across the political spectrum, and dates back to 19th-century civil rights litigation. 

Lies, Lies, Lies

Donald Trump’s statements about Muslims cheering after 9/11 are just the latest in a long record of false claims. But if Trump is the most recent, maybe most flamboyant, falsifier to enter US politics, he's not the first and won't be the last. OTM takes a look at political lies, including a taxonomy and history of political untruths; a psychological examination of how and why we lie; and whether, at the end of the day, the most damaging lies aren't the ones we tell ourselves about our fellow citizens.


Discuss on Twitter: #OTMlies

On San Bernardino

Hours before Wednesday's mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, a group of physicians petitioned Congress to end the so-called Dickey Amendment, a nearly twenty-year-old ban that effectively prevents the CDC from researching gun violence. Brooke talks with Todd Zwillich, Washington Correspondent for The Takeaway, about the history of the ban and its current political state.


And: as the names of the victims are being released to the public and their families struggle to make meaning from their incalculable loss, they often find they must learn how to manage the media to achieve their goals. The template for that kind of PR savvy was established back in 1999, after the massacre at Columbine High School, as Karen Duffin reported for us a few years ago. 


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