1. Who is making ZigZag and how is it being funded?
ZigZag is a podcast and the first project from Manoush Zomorodi and Jen Poyant, co-founders of Stable Genius Productions, in partnership with Civil and Radiotopia from PRX.
Civil is a new platform using the blockchain to support, distribute, and protect journalism. It has given Stable Genius Productions a grant (including Civil tokens) to produce ZigZag. SGP retains all editorial control.
Additional funding comes from listener donations and ads on the podcast. PRX’s Radiotopia, home of 99% Invisible, Criminal, and Song Exploder, provides audio distribution, sponsorship sales, and lots of moral support.
2. Why did Jen and Manoush decide to leave WNYC?
We loved making our show, Note to Self, at WNYC Studios. But we felt ready for financial and editorial independence. Our goal is to build a badass women-owned-and-operated media company with a mission to help people navigate personal and global change. Podcasts are our lab. Hear more details about what specifically prompted us to leave in Episode One of ZigZag.
3. What is Blockchain? What are the pros and cons of it for your biz?
The blockchain is a network of computers or a “distributed ledger.” It allows people to share data and information directly with each other without powerful middlemen like banks, social media platforms, and governments.
There are lots of unanswered questions about the blockchain but explaining how it works and its potential is a gateway to exploring all kinds of other issues tech and society have right now, especially how we might fix journalism’s business model.
4. Why join Radiotopia?
We’ve always admired Roman Mars and all the other amazing podcasts in Radiotopia. Its collective structure, support for creative independent audio producers, and roots in public radio make it the ideal fit for ZigZag. We were honored they invited us to join.
5. When will Zigzag publish and what will I hear?
Season 1 of ZigZag will publish every Thursday this summer starting June 14.
You’ll hear from the founders of Civil, Jessica Lessin of The Information, Roman Mars of Radiotopia, Alex Blumberg and Matt Lieber of Gimlet Media, Angel investor Jess Verrilli, futurist Bettina Warburg and many more. You’ll also be privy to some of our most intimate conversations. Yikes.