Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson joined Marketplace in the summer of 2012 to re-launch and produce the then-named Tech Report, now called Marketplace Tech. He was officially hired as host in early 2014.

Johnson started his career in journalism in 2003, working as a features and general assignment reporter for The Day newspaper in New London, Connecticut. 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, Johnson 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. Johnson 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.

He doesn't like to brag about it but over the years, Johnson 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 and Neil Young. He enjoys and engages in 80s movie references, 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

Fighting dyslexia with shrinking screens

It turns out that reading on a computer screen -- even a tiny one -- might actually help people with dyslexia improve speed and focus.
Posted In: disability, Tech, screens, reading

Tesla adds another trophy to the shelf

A hot car, a stock price doing back flips into positive territory -- for a young company, Tesla is having a great year.
Posted In: tesla, electric cars

Hi-tech glove turns words into touch

Design researcher Tom Bieling has made something called the Lorm Glove, which could soon help people who are deaf or blind communicate.
Posted In: disability, Tech, blind

Crowdsourced 'Danger Maps' reveal contamination in China

With the financial help of Internet company Alibaba, Liu Chunlei has been crowdsourcing so-called 'Danger Maps' to make pollution information publicly available.
Posted In: China, pollution, alibaba

Buying Instagram followers with the help of cybercriminals

Cybercriminals are selling Instagram followers with help from an old computer virus called Zeus.
Posted In: instagram, social media, cybercrime

Down goes Google, down goes the Internet?

It was only down for a few minutes, but a Google outage on Friday still has people talking about the global impact.
Posted In: Google, Internet

U.S. reconsiders billions in aid to Egypt's military

So far, the U.S. is suspending military exercises with Egypt, but not cutting off military aid money.
Posted In: Egypt

One person's mobile coupon app is another's seeing eye dog

Technology can make us better, faster, stronger, and more productive. But it has another promise: accessibility.
Posted In: disability, disabled, Tech

Can robots create art?

A continuing goal and a heated debate in the tech world: Can robots truly create art? And what does that even mean?
Posted In: robots, art, Music

Xbox gets into show business

We can now add Microsoft to the list of companies trying to woo users by producing original TV shows.
Posted In: xbox, Microsoft, television, video games


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