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. 

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Features by Ben Johnson

Google algorithm inadvertently takes down ring of Chinese car thieves

Machines are becoming alarmingly intelligent, smart enough to root out crime.
Posted In: Google, China, scams, spam

Startup lets fans tell bands where to play

For musicians these days hitting the road is where the real money is at, as long as people actually show up to see you play. That's where tech startup Rabbl hopes to come in.
Posted In: Music, music industry, concerts, crowdsourcing

When it comes to Tumblr, sex doesn't sell

Yahoo wants blogging site Tumblr to make money, and to do that, Tumblr needs to weed out pornography.
Posted In: tumblr, Yahoo, porn, Internet, censorship

Apple keeps its shine

Investors are happy with Apple's latest business performance, but the big question is what happens when the company runs out of buyers for its high-end phones and tablets?
Posted In: apple, iPhone, iPad

Congress takes up NSA's data mining allowance

The House of Representatives votes on an amendment to take away money from the NSA today. It's part of the $500 billion defense spending bill and it's got the tech industry up in arms.
Posted In: nsa, data mining, big data, Congress

The biggest obstacle for the Hyperloop? Money

Musk has only hinted at what the Hyperloop is, but he's described his latest idea as a 'cross between a Concorde, a railgun and an air hockey table.'
Posted In: tesla, Elon Musk, transporation, inventions

Meet Big Bertha, Seattle's ginormous tunnel boring machine

Big Bertha, named for former city mayor Bertha Knight Landes, will dig up to 100 feet a day and build a massive tunnel under the city for a new freeway.
Posted In: Seattle, infrastructure, construction

ACLU warns of license plate tracking

The American Civil Liberties Union says it has found another instance of Americans being tracked by the government. Not online, but on the road through license plate tracking.
Posted In: aclu, surveillance, NSA leaks

Emmys go digital: Netflix 'House of Cards' nominated

Emmy nominations are out and some of the biggest nods are going to Netflix.
Posted In: netflix, emmy awards, emmy's, television

Soundcloud wants you to see and touch sound

Soundcloud will turn six-years-old at the end of this month. In the last two years alone, Soundcloud's registered users have increased 400 percent to 40 million.
Posted In: soundcloud, social media, audio, Music

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