Ben Brock Johnson

Ben Johnson is the host of Marketplace Tech and the digital-only podcast Codebreaker. He joined Marketplace in 2012 and officially became the host of Marketplace Tech in early 2014.

Ben started his career in journalism in 2003, working as a features and general assignment reporter for The Day newspaper in New London, Conn. While there, he won a regional award for feature writing and was recruited to write a weekly entertainment column for the Tribune Media Service wire service. In 2006, Ben relocated to New York City to be an entertainment and music reporter at the Staten Island Advance newspaper, where he soon moved into hard news, working the cops beat and as a weekend city desk editor.

In 2010, he began to work as a freelance web producer at The Takeaway, a national radio show produced out of New York’s WNYC Radio in partnership with WGBH, The New York Times and the BBC. Ben went on to be a freelance radio producer at WNYC, serving as the digital editor for The Takeaway while also doing live and features reporting for the station on everything from Occupy Wall Street to New York's last functioning ship graveyard. While working at WNYC, Ben started blogging for Slate Magazine's breaking news blog, The Slatest.

In 2012, Ben left WNYC to manage a partnership between Slate and YouTube, producing daily breaking news videos and other content for SlateV, the magazine's video department. He also wrote regularly for Slate's Future Tense blog and drew the extreme ire of his fellow Radiohead fans by asking the band to stop touring.

Ben doesn't like to brag about it, but over the years, he has interviewed Jay-Z, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Luciano Pavarotti, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, Josh Homme, Biz Stone, Guy Kawasaki, Col. Chris Hadfield, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Neil Young and more. He enjoys and engages in ’80s movie references, plus pie baking and high-fives. His Twitter feed has never been polluted by a subtweet. His interest in swimming knows no bounds, especially if there is a high-dive and a high-five involved. 



Features by Ben Johnson

A Facebook logo created from pictures of the site's users worldwide.

Facebook hopes you'll like its new search function

The social media site's new feature lets users search 2 trillion posts.
Posted In: Facebook, newsfeed, Facebook Timeline

Giphy CEO Alex Chung: 'We're gonna make a ton of money'

How one of the top gif websites in the world plans to be the Google of gif ads.
Posted In: communications, gif, giphy, Alex Chung, slack
A drone flies above New York.

Flying a drone for fun? Get ready to register it

Pilot sightings of the devices have tripled, and the US has been slow to respond.
Posted In: drones, UAVs

Slack's breakneck growth

Slack has 250 employees, up from 80 last winter. Oh, and a $2.8 billion valuation.
Posted In: slack, flickr, email, valuation

Full interview: Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield

Are Slack users Slackers? Stewart Butterfield's greatest fear, and an Easter Egg.
Posted In: slack, flickr, coworkers

Bad tech habits were made to be broken

You might be guilty, too. Now, put the phone down and go to sleep already.
Posted In: habits, smart phones

Finding art in NSA Powerpoints

Artist Simon Denny draws inspiration from the tech world for his art.
Posted In: art, Tech, Edward Snowden, Simon Denny
An open hood reveals the motor of a Volkswagen e-Golf electric car.

The many computers under the hood

As the VW emissions scandal illustrates, modern cars rely heavily on software.
Posted In: cars, Volkswagen, computers
There's a no-drone zone around the Pope's destinations during his visit to the U.S.

The Pope, drones and a few regulations

The pope's visit inadvertently calls attention to drone regulations.
Posted In: drones, FAA, pope

The creative limitations of sampling

Run the Jewels rapper and producer El-P talks about the sampler that started it all.
Posted In: Music, equipment, keyboards


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