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Ben 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, 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

In summer 2012 Ben joined Marketplace to relaunch and produce the Tech Report, now called Marketplace Tech. When David Brancaccio became the host of Marketplace Morning Report in 2013, Ben started hosting Marketplace Tech and was hired officially as host in early 2014.

He doesn't like to brag about it but over the years, Ben 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. Ben 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. 

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Features by Ben Johnson

Google gets its Waze, boosts map data

Google has confirmed it will acquire the social mapping startup Waze. The news comes after intense reported interest from Apple and Facebook.
Posted In: Google, app, maps, social media

The 'What if' problem of government surveillance

Count me in the camp of people who aren't worried about the NSA dragging me away because of communications I've had on the phone or online. But there's one big problem with secret government surveillance of data on U.S. citizens: the "what if" problem. While our current political system doesn't seem to punish people recklessly for speaking up and excercising free speech, that could always change. And that's the heart of the issue, to me. We can't know what the future holds for our political system, and because of that, we need to be vigilant in protecting our First Ammendment rights.

Tell us: What do you think?

Do you care about government surveillance? You're in the minority

Do you care if the government knows who you're talking to on Facebook and when? Whom you're emailing? If so, why? If not, why not?
Posted In: nsa, PRISM, pew, surveillance

Apple tries to pump up developers

We know what consumers want from Apple, but what about developers?
Posted In: apple, ios, software

Bill Nye on mining asteroids, space, and spreading science PB&J

Bill Nye the Science Guy discusses asteroid science, space exploration, and why not everyone needs to become an engineer.
Posted In: space exploration, Science, space, asteroid

In digital age, leaks get harder to hide

The source of information leaks is getting harder to hide. Can whistleblowers do anything to cover their tracks?
Posted In: nsa, surveillance, journalism

Is your computer part of a botnet? It's hard to tell

Microsoft worked with law enforcement this week to shutdown a massive network of computers being used by criminals called a botnet. What is a botnet? And could you be part of one?
Posted In: Microsoft, hacking, cybercrime

Turkish protesters use software to shield identity

Turkey has now joined the list of countries where questions about government, religion, and yes, social media have made for large scale protests.
Posted In: turkey, social media, protest

Does the fifth amendment cover your password protected data?

When it comes to pleading the fifth, the digital age is making things complicated.
Posted In: privacy, Tech, constitutional

YouTube karaoke, Tajik-style

Did the government of Tajikistan ban YouTube over an embarrassing karaoke performance?
Posted In: Tech, YouTube

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