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Recode Decode with Kara Swisher


One of tech's most prominent journalists, Kara Swisher is known for her insightful reporting and straight-shooting style. Listen in as she hosts hard-hitting interviews about the week in tech with influential business leaders and outspoken personalities from media, politics and more.

One of tech's most prominent journalists, Kara Swisher is known for her insightful reporting and straight-shooting style. Listen in as she hosts hard-hitting interviews about the week in tech with influential business leaders and outspoken personalities from media, politics and more.
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One of tech's most prominent journalists, Kara Swisher is known for her insightful reporting and straight-shooting style. Listen in as she hosts hard-hitting interviews about the week in tech with influential business leaders and outspoken personalities from media, politics and more.






Ken Burns on "Country Music," digital documentaries, and why "there's no them, there's only us"

Filmmaker Ken Burns talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his latest documentary series "Country Music," in which he explores the history of the genre, its place in the larger American musical landscape, and the powerful universality of "three chords and the truth." Burns says that unlike rock and jazz, country music is largely a story about powerful women, and also unpacks the ways in which it reflects the intermingling ethnic diversity of the US. He also discusses his online video...


The inside story of the Cambridge Analytica scandal

Cambridge Analytica’s former business development director Brittany Kaiser talks with Recode’s Kara Swisher about her new book TARGETED: The Cambridge Analytica Whistleblower's Inside Story of How Big Data, Trump, and Facebook Broke Democracy and How It Can Happen Again. Kaiser talks about how she first observed the dangers of social media while working on Barack Obama's 2008 campaign, why she mistakenly believed Cambridge Analytica was using technology as a force for good, and what happened...


Rosetta Stone President Matt Hulett on how to learn new languages and not forget them

Matt Hulett, the president of education company Rosetta Stone, talks with Recode’s Kara Swisher about the company’s pivot away from language-learning CDs and into a more advanced and “approachable” mobile app. He also talks about his “promiscuous” background in the tech industry; Rosetta Stone’s literacy catch-up program for children, Lexia Learning; and the bigger picture of how language education is changing around the world. Plus: What’s the best way to make learning stick, and will Elon...


Disrupting real estate with OpenDoor CEO Eric Wu / Evite CEO Victor Cho on turning around a Web 1.0 company

Recode's Kara Swisher interviews two CEOs in this double-feature episode of Recode Decode: First, she speaks with OpenDoor CEO Eric Wu about how technology is encroaching on the real estate industry, why housing is ripe for disruption, and how OpenDoor is bracing for the next recession. Later in the show, Swisher talks to Evite CEO Victor Cho about how the 21-year-old company is exploring new revenue models, avoiding the "MySpace slide," and what Cho learned from Eastman Kodak's failed...


"Antisocial" author Andrew Marantz on how the far right hijacked the internet

Andrew Marantz, a staff writer at the New Yorker, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his new book, Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno‑Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation. He discusses the danger of designing social media platforms around emotional engagement, how people like Mike Cernovich and Milo Yiannopoulos exploited people's belief in a broad political "consensus," and technology's role in advancing hate and extremism online. Marantz also explains what he...


Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina: Trump is doing lasting damage to the Republican Party

Carly Fiorina, the former CEO of HP who ran for the Republican nomination for president in 2016, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about campaigning against Donald Trump, her friendship with Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, and the over-concentration of power among a handful of CEOs in the tech industry. Fiorina also talks about her experience as one of the few female tech CEOs of the 1990s, the “lasting damage” President Trump has done to the Republican Party, and why she's impressed by Speaker...


FEC Chair Ellen Weintraub on political paralysis, election security, and Trump's "voter fraud" fantasies

Federal Election Commission Chair Ellen Weintraub talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about how the FEC works, how it tries to defend elections from foreign influence, and why the Commission is currently immobilized by a lack of "quorum" — in other words, it doesn't have enough members to launch or conclude any investigations. Weintraub talks about pending legislation to make advertising and campaign contributions more transparent, and explains how the FEC's current paralysis may undermine the...


Obama's cybersecurity chief Michael Daniel: Facebook is an “intelligence officer’s wet dream”

Barack Obama's former cybersecurity coordinator Michael Daniel, now the CEO of the nonprofit Cyber Threat Alliance, talks with Recode’s Kara Swisher about the state of US cybersecurity heading into the 2020 elections. Daniel says the proposed solutions to election hacking may just cause new problems: "If you can track your vote," he says, "I can track your vote." Featuring: Michael Daniel (@CyAlliancePrez), president and CEO, Cyber Threat Alliance Hosts: Kara Swisher (@karaswisher), Recode...


FTC Commissioner Rebecca Kelly Slaughter on Facebook's $5 billion fine, YouTube's COPPA violations, and the dangers of under-enforcement

Rebecca Kelly Slaughter, one of the FTC's two Democratic commissioners, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about the state of antitrust problems in the tech industry, the history of pushback against the FTC for alleged over-enforcement, and whether it is under-enforcing the law today. Slaughter also talks about her objections to the $5 billion fine against Facebook that the FTC negotiated this year, the limitations on its speed and fining power, and its investigation of YouTube for COPPA...


Senator Mark Warner on the Ukraine whistleblower, the end of anonymity, and the ongoing Russia investigation

Mark Warner, the senior US Senator from Virginia, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about several interconnected policy issues affecting the 2020 elections, including the security of voter registries, the expectation of social media manipulation by Russia and other hostile foreign powers, and the newly announced impeachment inquiry into President Trump's phone call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. Sen. Warner also talks about the potential of regulators breaking up tech giants and...


Whistleblowers have never been more important — or more at risk, says Whistleblower Aid CEO John Tye

John Napier Tye, the founder and CEO of Whistleblower Aid, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about how his non-profit law firm helps people seeking to legally expose corruption in the government and at private companies. It recently worked with a whistleblower at MIT, connecting them with New Yorker reporter Ronan Farrow to discuss the university's cover-up of funding that had come from convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein; Tye also discusses the US official who reported President Trump's...


Hermitage Capital CEO Bill Browder on Putin's crimes and DoNotPay CEO Josh Browder on robot lawyers for consumers

Recode's Kara Swisher talks with Hermitage Capital CEO Bill Browder, a hedge fund manager turned human rights activist and his son, Josh Browder, whose company DoNotPay helps consumers fight everything from parking tickets to the Equifax leaks. They talk about the different ways they have pursued justice for relatively powerless people, their entrepreneurial journeys, and how both the Putin regime and mega-corporations have taken advantage of the internet. Featuring: Bill Browder...


"She Said" authors Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey on Harvey Weinstein's downfall and the unanswered questions of the #MeToo movement

New York Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey talk with Recode's Kara Swisher about their new book, She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement. They talk about how Kantor and Twohey reported stories about sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein; how Weinstein's network of lawyers and advisers kept his misconduct under wraps; and how the story help launch an ongoing reckoning around power imbalances between men and women worldwide. They...


Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman on H-1B immigration, the China trade war, and why teachers should be tax-exempt

Steve Schwarzman, the CEO of the private equity firm The Blackstone Group, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his new book, What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence. Schwarzman — a longtime advisor to President Trump — also discusses his scholarship program that teaches future leaders how to do business in China, how he would like to see policymakers address populist anger, and the big economic trends he and Blackstone are currently pursuing. Plus: Can we fix the H-1B visa...


NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio on why tech can't solve all our problems, and how New York lost Amazon HQ2

Bill de Blasio, the mayor of New York City, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about why he's still running for the Democratic nomination in 2020, the threat of job automation and his proposed "robot tax," and how de Blasio thinks about the future of transit in New York and beyond. He also talks about how the plan for New York to become one of Amazon's "HQ2" locations fell apart, and why he supports both a national privacy bill and tougher antitrust action against Facebook and Google....


2020 presidential candidate Marianne Williamson on the problems with American capitalism, why she's not a "long shot," and being a religious Democrat

Author and spiritual teacher Marianne Williamson talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about her campaign to be the Democratic nominee for president in 2020. Williamson explains why she's still in the race even though she didn't qualify for the third debate and talks about what she has learned from running as an non-establishment candidate, negativity and anger on social media, and how she thinks about the tech industry — and vice versa. She and Swisher also discuss her entrepreneurial journey,...


The Wing CEO Audrey Gelman on women hiring women and why her company is different from WeWork

Audrey Gelman, the co-founder and CEO of women's coworking space The Wing, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about the company's new hiring network for its members, and how it can combat bias in hiring. They also discuss why Gelman and her co-founder Lauren Kassan started The Wing, the services it provides for its members, and the challenges of raising money for a business aimed at women. Featuring: Audrey Gelman (@audreygelman), CEO of The Wing (@the_wing) Hosts: Kara Swisher (@karaswisher),...


Microsoft President Brad Smith: Fixing what Silicon Valley broke is every tech company's responsibility

Microsoft President Brad Smith talks with Recode’s Kara Swisher about his new book, co-authored with Carol Ann Browne, Tools and Weapons: The Promise and the Peril of the Digital Age. They discuss what Microsoft learned from United States v. Microsoft Corp. in 2001 and how that antitrust investigation compares to today’s techlash; the culture of disruption and “move fast and break things” in Silicon Valley; and why every tech company, even those not responsible for problems, should be part...


Why workers need to be part of the conversation about UBI and artificial intelligence

Former New York Times labor reporter Steve Greenhouse talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his most recent book, Beaten Down, Worked Up: The Past, Present, and Future of American Labor. Greenhouse explains why worker power and compensation are at their lowest levels since World War II and how a series of cultural changes — including globalization, the internet, and the gig economy — have affected and endangered the working class. He and Swisher also discuss DoorDash's long-running practice...


Some CEOs try to be ethical. Most of them can't or won't, says "The Enlightened Capitalists" author James O'Toole.

James O'Toole, a professor emeritus at the University of Southern California, talks with Recode's Kara Swisher about his book, The Enlightened Capitalists: Cautionary Tales of Business Pioneers Who Tried to Do Well by Doing Good. O'Toole discusses the first such "enlightened capitalist," British industrialist Robert Owen; why, like Owen, do-gooder CEOs can't or won't make change today; and the history of the belief that corporations only exist to serve the shareholder. He also talks about...