We are fondly wrapping up production of our podcast Actuality, which was a joint venture between Marketplace and Quartz. The idea for a co-produced podcast came from a shared sensibility around covering business and the economy–a natural outgrowth of our admiration for each other’s work. Actuality has been a great chance for us to experiment together in the ever-changing area of on-demand media. Our two seasons, co-hosted by the terrific and talented team of Sabri Ben-Achour and Tim Fernholz, allowed us to connect the dots of the global economy with engaging guests and first-hand reporting.
Our biggest hit was the season 2 episode “A Machine to Save the World” on the topic of nuclear fusion, which brought our listeners along with Sabri and Tim as they visited an experiment that promises unlimited clean energy. In another episode, Tim and Sabri heard from the man who bought the rights to Batman at age 27, and spent years trying to convince the world to make a movie no one thought would ever succeed (spoiler alert: the Batman movies did just fine in the end). And the team tackled issues as wide-ranging as male contraception, soccer as cash cow, and why a totally connected world is still out of reach.
Actuality got our newsrooms working together, allowing us to explore how we would translate our sensibilities to a new format and structure a whole new editorial product. Actuality had many dedicated listeners to whom we’re extremely grateful, but interest wasn’t quite broad enough to keep working on it. We’d rather hit pause now and move on to other experiments.
We leave smarter about storytelling and wiser about the use of podcasting as a medium. We expect to keep working together on projects, and will only be accelerating the experiments in form and distribution that we undertake. As always, you listen to the latest from Marketplace here and follow other Marketplace podcasts here. And you can connect with Quartz at our website and check out some other projects you might also like such as our Atlas charting platform and iPhone app.