Podcast

Sway

Power, unpacked. “Sway” is an interview show hosted by Kara Swisher, “Silicon Valley’s most feared and well liked journalist.” Now taking on Washington, Hollywood and the world, Kara investigates power: who has it, who’s been denied it, and who dares to defy it. Every Monday and Thursday, from New York Times Opinion Audio.

Episodes

  • Best Of: Jon Stewart

    Jul 28 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the comedian and former Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, taped in March 2022. This episode contains strong language.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Best Of: Matthew McConaughey

    Jul 25 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the actor and self-proclaimed ‘statesman-philosopher, folk-singing poet’ Matthew McConaughey, taped in October 2021.This episode contains strong language.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Best Of: Stacey Abrams

    Jul 21 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the Georgia gubernatorial candidate and Democratic powerhouse Stacey Abrams, taped in March 2021.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Best Of: Jason Miller

    Jul 18 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the longtime Trump adviser and C.E.O. of Gettr Jason Miller, taped in August 2021.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Best Of: Fran Lebowitz

    Jul 14 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the humorist and famed New Yorker Fran Lebowitz, taped in February 2021.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • First Person: She’s Gay and a Republican. Is There a Place for Her in the G.O.P.?

    Jul 11 2022

    This month Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes — usually of Sway. But today she has another show to share with you: First Person.In this episode of the New York Times Opinion podcast, host Lulu Garcia-Navarro speaks with Jerri Ann Henry, a former leader of the Log Cabin Republicans, an outspoken group of gay conservatives. Henry used to thinkher party was moving toward accepting gay rights, but with G.O.P. legislators backing anti-L.G.T.B.Q. laws in several states and the constituti...more

  • Best Of: Monica Lewinsky

    Jul 07 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this interview with Monica Lewinsky, the producer, activist and — yes — former White House intern. We taped this conversation in October 2021.This episode contains strong language.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Best Of: Elon Musk

    Jul 04 2022

    This month, Kara is revisiting some of her favorite episodes of Sway — including this conversation with the Tesla C.E.O., Elon Musk, taped in September 2020.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Kara in the Hot Seat

    Jun 30 2022

    As the show comes to a close, it felt fitting to save the most elusive guest for last: Kara Swisher herself. In this conversation with the senior editor of “Sway,” Nayeema Raza, Kara revisits major moments from her year and a half of interviews — from a dropped Zoom call with Nancy Pelosi to a raw interrogation of Parler’s C.E.O., John Matze, which was taped as the Jan. 6 Capitol attack unfolded. They talk about the guests who got away (like Dolly Parton), the ones they could have been harder on...more

  • ‘Venture Capitalists Are Going to Turn Into Vulture Capitalists,’ and Other Predictions From Andrew Ross Sorkin

    Jun 27 2022

    Stocks tumbling, inflation soaring and interest rates climbing — it’s clear America’s economy has hit some turbulence. And yet President Biden says a recession is “not inevitable.” Andrew Ross Sorkin, the founder and editor at large of DealBook at The New York Times, sat down with Kara Swisher to unpack our economic woes, predict what happens next and diagnose what Washington could have done differently.In this conversation, they discuss how the pandemic highlighted our economic dependence on Ch...more

  • Would You Upload Your Consciousness to the Cloud?

    Jun 23 2022

    Instagram, Twitter and TikTok can monopolize all of your time, driven by what the novelist Jennifer Egan calls humankind’s “ongoing hunger for authenticity.” But to Egan, social media is not a winning strategy for discovering what’s real or true: “Looking to the internet for authentic experience is just inherently a loser,” she says. The digital world, after all, offers only an “illusion of authenticity.”In her newest novel, “The Candy House” — set in the same universe as her Pulitzer Prize-winn...more

  • ‘The Senate Needs a Soul’

    Jun 20 2022

    Raphael Warnock claims he’s not a politician, though he certainly sounds like one and serves as one. The U.S. senator from Georgia, who has long been the pastor at Martin Luther King Jr.’s former church, says that his “entry into politics is an extension” of his work on a range of what he sees as moral issues, such as health care, criminal-justice reform and voting rights.Warnock became Georgia’s first Black senator in January 2021, when he narrowly beat the Republican incumbent, Kelly Loeffler,...more

  • As Bitcoin Busts, What’s the Future of Web3? And What Even is Web3?

    Jun 16 2022

    Chris Dixon is one of Silicon Valley’s most ardent crypto-evangelists. A general partner at the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, he leads a16z Crypto, which invests in web3. At the beginning of the year, his proselytizing seemed to be paying off: Bitcoin had doubled in value in the last half of 2021, NFTs were all the rage, and crypto seemed poised for mainstream acceptance. Nowhere was this more evident than the Super Bowl broadcast, crammed with cryptocurrency ads featuring celebritie...more

  • Can We Tech Our Way Out of Climate Change?

    Jun 13 2022

    What if Silicon Valley’s next big frontier were not web3 but climate change? That’s the bet the venture capitalist John Doerr is making: Doerr, the billionaire author of “Speed and Scale: An Action Plan for Solving Our Climate Crisis Now,” recently donated $1.1 billion to Stanford University to fund a new school focused on climate and sustainability, describing climate science as “the new computer science.” But with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s latest assessment noting that th...more

  • David Axelrod, Sarah Longwell and Preet Bharara on What to Look For in the Jan. 6 Hearings

    Jun 09 2022

    The House’s Jan. 6 committee is going prime-time. On Thursday, its members, with Representative Liz Cheney, Republican of Wyoming, serving as vice chair, will present findings in hearings televised throughout June on all major networks (except Fox News). But will Americans watch? Or care?In this conversation, Kara Swisher breaks down the hearings with the former Obama senior adviser David Axelrod, the Republican strategist Sarah Longwell and the former U.S. attorney Preet Bharara. They discuss t...more

  • Best Of: Dave Eggers Created the Google-Amazon Mash-Up of Your Nightmares

    Jun 06 2022

    Tech stocks may be under pressure, but the tentacles of Silicon Valley continue to grow, inching us closer to the dystopian world Dave Eggers paints in “The Every.” The novel imagines a world where the fictional equivalent of Google and Amazon merge to form an all-knowing corporate juggernaut that can program our every moment. Kara is revisiting her conversation with Eggers, which was taped in September.In this conversation, which first aired in September, Kara and Eggers discuss the inspiration...more

  • Are Elon Musk and Twitter Trapped In a Bad Marriage?

    Jun 02 2022

    Elon Musk swept Twitter off its feet in April, when he put in a bid to buy the company for $44 billion. But the impassioned beginnings of this acquisition have cooled down in the weeks since, as Musk has raised concerns about the inner workings of the company he agreed to buy essentially sight unseen (he did not conduct due diligence before he agreed to buy the social media platform). As the New York Times tech columnist Kevin Roose puts it, the deal is starting to look “like an arranged marriag...more

  • David Ellison on ‘Top Gun: Maverick,’ Working with Tom Cruise and Hiring John Lasseter

    May 30 2022

    “Top Gun: Maverick” is expected to be one of the first blockbusters of the summer. But as streaming platforms proliferate and movie theaters continue to struggle, is a movie that was designed to be seen on the biggest screen possible be able to lure audiences back to theaters? David Ellison thinks so. He’s the founder and C.E.O. of Skydance Media, the company behind the film, as well as other action franchise reboots like “Mission: Impossible” and “Terminator.”In this conversation, Kara Swisher ...more

  • When It Comes to Gun Control, Will ‘Baby Steps’ Fix Anything?

    May 26 2022

    In the wake of the fatal shooting of 19 schoolchildren and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday, supporters of gun control are renewing calls for the government to act. But in a bid to negotiate a bipartisan consensus, the Democratic majority leader, Chuck Schumer, has signaled that there will not be an imminent vote on gun control legislation in the Senate. And the journalists Nicholas Kristof and Frank Smyth don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing.“If anything, this could be a wake-up...more

  • The C.E.O. of Condé Nast: ‘ This Is No Longer a Magazine Company’

    May 23 2022

    Home to brands like Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and Bon Appétit, Condé Nast might as well be French for “magazine.” But the company’s C.E.O. sees a “difficult future” for print and is trying to pivot Condé Nast publications toward creating more digital content — even going so far as to say that Condé Nast is “no longer a magazine company.” Amid this fight for readers, clicks and subscriptions, the company has struggled publicly through a cultural reckoning, fielding accusations of a toxic work c...more

  • After Buffalo: Will Anything Change at Facebook, Twitter or Fox News?

    May 18 2022

    A shooter, radicalized online, plotted a racist attack with plenty of digital fingerprints, intended to livestream it on social media and published a manifesto online. It happened in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2019. And it seems to have happened again last week in Buffalo. In the years in between, we’ve heard plenty about social media companies amping up their content moderation efforts and clamping down on violent extremism. Yet nothing — or not enough — has really changed.In this conversati...more

  • From Bernie to Biden to … MSNBC

    May 16 2022

    Symone Sanders left a meteoric political trajectory to join the media. After working on Bernie Sanders’s 2016 campaign, advising Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign and serving as Vice President Kamala Harris’s chief spokesperson for her first year in office, Sanders is pivoting to become the host of her own MSNBC show, “Symone.” This makes her the latest in a revolving door of former Washington insiders turned media anchors (think George Stephanopoulos, Nicolle Wallace, Jen Psaki and Kayleigh McEnany).In...more

  • From Twitter to TV, Are We in a Media Reckoning?

    May 12 2022

    Hollywood went all in on streaming, but Netflix’s plummeting stock, CNN’s shutdown of its CNN+ streaming service, and a forthcoming sale of Vice has chief executives and the stock market questioning whether that was the wrong bet. In this conversation, Kara Swisher breaks down this year’s media shake-ups with Matt Belloni, founding partner at Puck News, and Ben Smith, the former New York Times media reporter who is a founder of a media start-up called Semafor.They discuss what Smith calls Hollyw...more

  • Clarissa Ward: ‘Fear and Panic Are Bedfellows’ in Ukraine

    May 09 2022

    Clarissa Ward has had, as she puts it, a “long and very complicated relationship” with Russia. The chief international correspondent for CNN, she has had stints in Moscow since the beginning of her career, and has struggled to get a Russian visa since she investigated the 2020 poisoning of the Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny.But that hasn’t stopped her from reporting on the region, and in particular on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Yet after months of war, it can be an uphill battle to...more

  • How the Supreme Court Became ‘Intoxicated With Its Power’

    May 06 2022

    One of the questions haunting the unprecedented leak of Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization is, quite simply, who did it and why? Speculation abounds online, and Chief Justice John Roberts, who called the leak a “betrayal,” has called for an investigation. But there are other lessons to be learned from the leak — about the state of the Supreme Court and its power, its relationship with the public and the kinds of reforms it may need.In this conver...more

  • The ‘Frighteningly Autocratic’ Implications of Overturning Roe v. Wade

    May 05 2022

    Justice Samuel Alito’s leaked draft opinion has offered a chilling preview into what America will look like if Roe v. Wade is overturned. But the president and C.E.O. of the Center for Reproductive Rights, Nancy Northup, has been preparing for this battle. Her organization represents the Mississippi abortion clinic whose legal battle sparked the Supreme Court case, and Northup’s colleagues argued the case in front of the Supreme Court in December. “We are not waking up today to realize this was ...more

  • A Billionaire Hedge Fund Manager Predicts the Future — and What He Sees Is Concerning

    May 02 2022

    The Russia-Ukraine war has opened up questions about America’s role in global affairs and how the balance of power will reshuffle. These questions aren’t new; the discussion of the end of American dominance and the rise of new powers like China has captivated political and economic discourse. It is also the subject of Ray Dalio’s latest book, “Principles for Dealing With the Changing World Order.”In this conversation, Kara Swisher asks Dalio, the billionaire behind the world’s largest hedge fund...more

  • Is Elon Musk About to Be the ‘King of Nothing’?

    Apr 27 2022

    It happened: Elon Musk struck a deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion. The billionaire, who is one of the platform’s most popular users, has already hinted at some of the changes he aspires to “unlock” at the company, from making Twitter a platform for “free speech” to making its algorithms open source and purging spam bots.In this conversation, recorded live on Twitter Spaces, Kara Swisher talks with the journalists Casey Newton, Anand Giridharadas and William Cohan about how Elon’s reign will im...more

  • Tina Brown on Harry and Meghan’s ‘Scorched Earth’ Exit

    Apr 25 2022

    Whether it’s the Queen’s platinum jubilee, Meghan and Harry ditching their royal roles or the sexual assault allegations against Prince Andrew, Buckingham Palace has kept the media, and the public, hooked on the goings-on of a thousand-year-old institution. Tina Brown has been covering the royal family since the days of Diana, most recently in her forthcoming book, “The Palace Papers.”In this conversation, the former Vanity Fair editor talks to Kara Swisher about how Elizabeth has sustained her ...more

  • Jimmy Kimmel Made a Joke. Then Marjorie Taylor Greene Called the Police On Him.

    Apr 21 2022

    Jimmy Kimmel has used his late-night slot to call out Donald Trump and Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene. But Kimmel says his jokes on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" aren’t about stoking partisanship — they’re about sounding the alarm on politicians who cross the line and amplify misinformation. And while Kimmel may find American politics bewildering right now, he says he still wants to hear from those he disagrees with — even “the media version of the Sackler family,” as Kimmel dubs Tucker Carlson. “I...more

  • Tony Kushner on the Republican ‘Fantasy’ of a Nation Controlled by ‘Straight White Men’

    Apr 18 2022

    From Gov. Ron DeSantis signing Florida’s so-called Don’t Say Gay bill to Gov. Greg Abbott issuing a Texas directive that would classify medical care for transgender adolescents as “child abuse,” Republicans across the country seem to be doubling down on anti-L.G.B.T.Q. policies. Their argument? It’s about “parental rights.” But the playwright Tony Kushner has seen this kind of battle play out before. His “Angels in America” hit two-part play examined the AIDS epidemic and L.G.B.T.Q. life in the ...more

  • How Michelle Yeoh Took Jackie Chan’s Role

    Apr 14 2022

    From her high-flying kicks in the film “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” to her unconventional take on a “Bond girl” in “Tomorrow Never Dies,” Michelle Yeoh has had a multidecade career defying stereotypes. Her latest role is no exception — she took on a part that was originally written for the actor Jackie Chan.In “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” Yeoh plays the superhero: a Chinese American immigrant mother who is called upon to save the world — and herself — by hopping across multiverses.In...more

  • Paul Krugman on Why the Economy Is Doing Better Than We Think

    Apr 11 2022

    From rising gas prices and inflation to the Russia-Ukraine war, the U.S. economy has experienced all sorts of turbulence recently. But it hasn’t all been a bad news story: The U.S. unemployment rate reached a low of 3.6 percent in March and wages are rising. In this conversation, Kara Swisher asks the economist and Nobel laureate Paul Krugman to put all these factors into perspective. “It’s not an A++ economy,” Krugman says, but it’s “immensely better” than where the economy was during the 2008 ...more

  • How Elon Musk’s ‘Soft Power’ Might Shape Twitter’s Future

    Apr 07 2022

    Elon Musk promoted himself from avid Twitter user to major stakeholder on Monday. Musk, the head of Tesla and SpaceX, who has over 80 million followers on the platform, now also owns a 9.2 percent stake in Twitter, making him the company’s largest shareholder. And by the time the company announced his appointment to the board on Tuesday, the internet was already speculating about the kinds of changes that Musk could influence. “He can make recommendations at the board meetings, but what he reall...more

  • ‘Trump Is Gone, and We Still Have the Problems’: Michael Lewis Makes Sense of Our Bungled Covid Response

    Apr 04 2022

    Dr. Anthony Fauci has been the face of America’s Covid response and has been praised and vilified for his expertise. But who are all the other people who have worked behind the scenes at agencies like the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to guide America through the pandemic? This is a question Michael Lewis tackles in his book “The Premonition,” which was published in May 2021. He talks about how getting to know these publi...more

  • What Putin’s Propaganda Looks Like from Russia and Ukraine

    Mar 31 2022

    The Russia-Ukraine War has been a dangerous time for journalists: Russian troops have kidnapped Ukrainian journalists working in contested territories, and the Kremlin has doubled down on censorship domestically as well, passing a law banning “fake” news about the Russian invasion, with a potential 15-year prison sentence.Kara talks to two journalists who have had to flee their homes because of the war and have experienced the impacts of Putin’s misinformation campaign. Olga Tokariuk is a Ukrain...more

  • Why Facebook's 'Hubris and Arrogance' Astound This Attorney General

    Mar 28 2022

    Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has sued the Trump administration, Uber, Juul, Exxon Mobil, the Sacklers, and more — and has made a national name for herself in the process. Now she’s investigating social media companies for the impact they have on teen mental health, and she’s not impressed. “The level of hubris and arrogance, particularly on the part of Facebook, has really astounded me,” she tells Kara Swisher. Healey is currently aiming for a statewide prize: She’s running for go...more

  • The Corporations Passing — and Failing — the Ukraine Morality Test

    Mar 24 2022

    McDonald’s, BP, Netflix and hundreds of other companies have enlisted in the West’s pushback against Vladimir Putin. Since the start of Russia’s invasion, several hundred U.S. companies have announced plans to withdraw from or step down their operations in the country. The idea, says Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, a professor at the Yale School of Management, is to make Russia such a pariah that Putin is forced to back down.Sonnenfeld, who’s been called a “C.E.O. whisperer,” is working with his team to com...more

  • How Apple, Not Government, Became Tech’s Biggest Regulator

    Mar 21 2022

    Big Tech has been amassing power and wealth for decades. So why is it taking the U.S. government so long to catch up? Congress, whose members can barely agree on lunch, is now contemplating a number of bipartisan bills on antitrust, privacy and more. Yet more than a year into an administration that seems to support more tech regulation, not a single piece of significant legislation has been passed.In this episode, Kara Swisher presses Representative Ro Khanna, Democrat of California, on why Tim ...more

  • How Kathy Griffin Survived Cancer and Cancellation

    Mar 17 2022

    Whether it’s Andrew Cuomo or Dave Chappelle, everyone these days, it seems, is blaming “cancel culture” for career problems. But five years ago, Kathy Griffin was a canary in the coal mine,  being canceled for reasons she says were overblown. In 2017, a photo where she posed with a mask styled to look like Donald Trump’s severed head went viral. She says it was clearly comedy, yet Griffin faced a Secret Service investigation as well as death threats from Trump supporters. She was also virtually ...more

  • Why this Hollywood Actor Stays Off Social Media (Mostly)

    Mar 14 2022

    As Facebook morphs into Meta and makes a push for immersive 3-D connection (without solving all of its existing problems), Kara Swisher takes a look back at the company’s early days — and the fictionalized telling of them — with the actor Andrew Garfield. He had his breakout role playing the Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin in the 2010 film “The Social Network.” He tells Kara, “I immediately shut my Facebook page down as soon as I read the script.”A decade later, Garfield’s career has taken o...more

  • How Far Would Biden Go in a Cyber War Against Putin?

    Mar 10 2022

    Ever since Russian forces invaded Ukraine late last month, President Biden has been toeing a fine line between providing support to the Ukrainians and averting kinetic, nuclear and cyber conflict between superpowers. In this conversation, Anne Neuberger, the deputy national security adviser for cyber and emerging technology, unpacks how this conflict is evolving in the cyber realm.Kara Swisher asks Neuberger how, in the face of attacks on Ukrainian banks and the Defense Ministry, the U.S. govern...more

  • Will Putin's Information Iron Curtain Backfire?

    Mar 07 2022

    On Friday, the Kremlin blocked access to Facebook inside Russia and passed a law making it illegal to spread what the government determines to be “false information” about the country’s armed forces. It was the latest move in President Vladimir Putin’s crackdown on dissent, which may be working. TikTok announced on Sunday that it is suspending livestreaming and new posts from Russia in response to the new disinformation law.But Clint Watts, a former FBI special agent who is now at the Foreign Po...more

  • Jon Stewart on Why the Right Would ‘Rather Do a Deal With Putin Than Pelosi’

    Mar 03 2022

    As he wages a war against Ukraine, Vladimir Putin is finding strange allies on U.S. soil — from former President Donald Trump to the Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Jon Stewart wasn’t surprised. The Daily Show comedian and host of the new Apple TV + series “The Problem With Jon Stewart” believes a certain subset of the right has long viewed Putin as “an ideological brother,” noting that “for years it’s been pretty clear that they would much rather do a deal with Putin than Pelosi.”In this conversa...more

  • Maggie Gyllenhaal Wants to Tell the Transgressive Stories of Motherhood

    Feb 28 2022

    Rewarding as it is, motherhood can be an uphill battle. In the pandemic, we heard this in the stories of mothers struggling to juggle child care and schooling with work and other responsibilities at home. But the pandemic simply lifted the curtain on an underrepresented reality for many parents. Actor, writer and director Maggie Gyllenhaal seeks to capture the messiness of motherhood in her new film “The Lost Daughter.” It’s an adaptation of the Elena Ferrante novel that explores the story of an...more

  • Anita Hill Takes On Those ‘Trying to Put Black Women in a Box’

    Feb 24 2022

    President Biden has interviewed at least three candidates for the Supreme Court seat vacated by Justice Stephen Breyer and has committed to nominating a Black woman to fill it. As the country awaits his selection, Kara Swisher turns to the law professor Anita Hill - host of the new podcast "Getting Even" - who testified during Clarence Thomas’s confirmation 30 years ago, accusing him of sexual harassment.The all-white, all-male Senate committee that interrogated Hill asked her whether she was a ...more

  • Best Of: What the Heck are NFTs? Let’s Ask Beeple.

    Feb 21 2022

    From Snoop Dogg to Melania Trump, it seems like everyone has gotten into the NFT craze in the last year, with billions of dollars worth of sales made in 2021. NFTs may be colloquial now, but the craze really picked up almost a year ago, when an artist named Michael Winkelmann (also known as Beeple) sold his work, “EVERYDAYS: THE FIRST 5000 DAYS,” for a whopping $69 million — the third-highest auction price involving a living artist, after Jeff Koons and David Hockney.So this week, Kara is revisi...more

  • Tech’s Love Affair With Miami

    Feb 17 2022

    Keith Rabois minted his wealth with Elon Musk, Peter Thiel and other members of the so-called “PayPal Mafia.” Now, though, he’s moved to Miami and become one of the city’s biggest hype men. He believes Florida — which has already seen an influx of tech bros, venture capital investments and cryptocurrency plays during the pandemic — offers a better home to tech than California can, largely because of the politics. He tells Kara Swisher: “The mayor of Miami, the governor of Florida treat citizens ...more

  • How the Sacklers Got Away With It

    Feb 14 2022

    Hundreds of thousands of Americans have died of opioid overdoses in the past 20 years — and the crisis has only worsened during the pandemic. In September, the Sackler family, which was behind the OxyContin manufacturer Purdue Pharma and helped create this overdose epidemic, finally agreed to disband the company and to pay a settlement of $4.5 billion. That may sound like a whopping amount of money, but as the journalist Patrick Radden Keefe points out, it’s arguably not. He profiled the Sackler...more

  • The Sandy Hook Father Who Refused to Let Alex Jones Win

    Feb 10 2022

    From the big lie to Bill Gates’s supposed Covid vaccine microchips, the internet loves a conspiracy theory. In this conversation, Kara Swisher revisits one that is almost a decade old: that Sandy Hook was a hoax. After a shooter at Sandy Hook Elementary School killed 26 people, including Noah Pozner, his father, Leonard Pozner, began seeing online musings that the tragedy was a production of crisis actors and part of a scheme to attack Second Amendment rights. The conspiracies were rampant on Fa...more

  • How Instagram, FedEx and Wordle Hook You

    Feb 07 2022

    Brands like Gucci, Nike and Ralph Lauren are already flooding virtual worlds like Roblox and Fortnite with digital goods and advertising. But the designer and podcaster Debbie Millman thinks these emergent virtual worlds run the risk of the same problems many see with social media platforms like Instagram — particularly if users are put in environments that lend themselves to comparison. “I don’t know very many people that come away from 30 minutes on Instagram feeling really good about who they...more

  • A Fox News ‘Defector’ on How the Network ‘Played Footsie’ With Trump

    Feb 03 2022

    The former Fox commentator Jonah Goldberg — who has been called a “Fox defector” — says that Tucker Carlson’s latest documentary series was “the anvil that broke the camel’s back.” Titled “Patriot Purge,” it featured conspiracy theories about the Jan. 6 insurrection under the guise of journalistic interrogation. It also became a breaking point in a schism unfolding at the network between those who have embraced the Big Lie and those who feel troubled by the network’s abandonment of basic facts.I...more

  • Why This Democratic Governor Seems to Be Over Covid

    Jan 31 2022

    As Omicron surged across the country, Democratic and Republican governors alike doubled down on indoor mask mandates and declared states of emergency. But when asked whether he would make masks mandatory, Gov. Jared Polis of Colorado declared, “The emergency is over.” Unlike Ron DeSantis of Florida, Greg Abbott of Texas and other governors who have refused mandates, Polis is a lifelong Democrat. His take: Omicron is “a very different situation than early 2020” and there’s a “silent majority” who...more

  • Bob Iger’s Advice to Hollywood on His Way Out

    Jan 27 2022

    Bob Iger’s recent retirement from Disney marks a sea change for the company. Starting at ABC nearly 50 years ago, Iger ascended from working at a local news network to serving as the chief executive and chairman of Disney, ABC’s owner. During that time, he navigated tectonic shifts in Hollywood, including the rise of streaming platforms and the fall of movie chains. So Kara Swisher dragged Iger out of his three weeks of retirement to chat more about the future of entertainment.In this conversati...more

  • Omicron Is (Still) Confusing. Two Experts Help Untangle the Covid Chaos.

    Jan 24 2022

    With canceled plans, restaurants shuttering and talk of school shutdowns, the experience of the Covid pandemic can sometimes feel like two steps forward, one step back. And it’s not helped by changing (and sometimes confusing) guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the lack of key resources like at-home rapid tests, and the misinformation that abounds from Dr. Google.So in this conversation, Kara Swisher turns to two experts to answer our burning questions about the latest...more

  • Elizabeth Warren Claps Back at Elon Musk

    Jan 20 2022

    Few people draw more ire in Silicon Valley than the Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. She’s long fought against the power of big banks and corporate behemoths, so it’s natural that she’s turned her attention to breaking up dominant tech companies and taxing the billionaires behind them. So far, it’s not going down well: When she called out Elon Musk, a billionaire who paid no federal income tax at all in 2018, for not paying his fair share, she received a classically Muskian tweetback: ...more

  • Exclusive: Lina Khan Is (Still) Bursting Big Tech's Bubble

    Jan 19 2022

    Yesterday, the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice announced they would work to rewrite merger rules in an approach that would clamp down on big tech deals that have allowed companies like Amazon, Google and Facebook to expand their tentacles across industries and across more areas of our lives. Today, Lina Khan sat down with Kara and DealBook editor Andrew Ross Sorkin in an exclusive interview for the New York Times and CNBC.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more i...more

  • Best Of: America’s Caste System Is 400 Years Old. That Doesn’t Change Overnight.

    Jan 17 2022

    The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Isabel Wilkerson has pointed to 2022 as a milestone for American history, marking the year the country will have existed as an independent nation for as long as the institution of slavery operated on its soil. In observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, we’re re-airing Kara’s interview with Wilkerson. This conversation was taped last year, shortly after the events of Jan. 6. In it, the author of “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” offers historical cont...more

  • Why This Liberal Mayor Doesn’t Want a Lecture From Progressives

    Jan 13 2022

    San Francisco’s politicians are struggling to find a Goldilocks balance when it comes to public safety, and Democrats across the nation should pay attention. After declaring a state of emergency in the Tenderloin neighborhood to deal with what she called a public health crisis of opioid use, Mayor London Breed has been criticized for taking too strong a hand in forcing people to seek treatment for drugs or mental health problems. Meanwhile, the city’s district attorney, Chesa Boudin has been acc...more

  • What if Work Were a Video Game?

    Jan 10 2022

    When it comes to the metaverse, Phil Spencer could give Mark Zuckerberg a run for his money. The head of Xbox and executive vice president of gaming at Microsoft, Spencer says popular games like Microsoft’s Halo and Minecraft — and competitors like Roblox and Fortnite — are already creating virtual worlds similar to the metaverse. And he says that video games, whose sales have soared during Covid, could offer lessons for the workplaces that have moved online in the pandemic: “We look at these vi...more

  • One Year After the Jan. 6 Attack, Parler’s C.E.O Grapples with Big Tech and Trump

    Jan 06 2022

    After an angry mob attacked the Capitol last year and users on the right-leaning social network Parler organized, shared footage and called to “burn D.C. to the ground,” Kara Swisher grilled the platform’s co-founder and C.E.O., John Matze. The interview was cited in Apple’s decision to take Parler off its App store and Amazon’s decision to suspend web hosting service for Parler. Google also booted the platform off its Play Store. Parler effectively went offline because of these three moves, and...more

  • Twitter’s Former C.E.O. Has a ‘Too Bad, So Sad’ Approach to Content Moderation

    Jan 03 2022

    Remember social media before Donald Trump’s presidency? Dick Costolo does. He was Twitter’s chief executive from 2010 to 2015. And despite being in the hot seat for certain content moderation decisions during his tenure, Costolo thinks that platforms have the right to take down whatever and whomever they want. Costolo argues that the key is transparency and companies acknowledging that every decision “ends up being subjective anyway” — so that no one is surprised “when we decide to treat the ava...more

  • Best Of: Michael Pollan’s ‘Trip Report’

    Dec 27 2021

    From microdosing to decriminalizing and investing, many Americans are taking a renewed interest in psychedelics. As states like New York and Michigan consider decriminalizing psilocybin and investors gamble on psychedelic start-ups, Kara revisits her conversation with Michael Pollan from August. They discuss his latest book, “This Is Your Mind on Plants,” which explores the consciousness-altering chemicals of plant medicines like peyote, why the U.S. government waged war on psychedelics and othe...more

  • Why Facebook Whistle-Blower Frances Haugen Thinks She’ll Outlast Mark Zuckerberg

    Dec 20 2021

    The Facebook whistle-blower Frances Haugen leaked a treasure trove of internal documents to the press and testified before Congress about the extent to which the tech giant fuels political polarization and erodes the mental health of teenagers. In this conversation with Kara, Haugen contemplates how Facebook has gotten away with it for so long. She discusses the company’s focus on seemingly objective metrics, the fixation with free speech and censorship debates and a general “fetishization of fl...more

  • Buy an Earth Suit, Shoot Sulfur into the Atmosphere (And Other Contingency Plans for a Warming Earth)

    Dec 13 2021

    We are quickly approaching the dystopian future that Neal Stephenson outlined in his 1992 best seller “Snow Crash.” That book anticipated and coined the term “metaverse,” a concept that almost 30 years later has become a reality for many gamers, and the North Star for a certain Mark Zuckerberg. In his latest book, “Termination Shock,” Stephenson sounds his next alarm bell — this time on climate change.In this conversation, Kara discusses the perverse relationship between personal wealth and clim...more

  • Best Of: Exercise, and Accept Your ‘Inevitable Demise’

    Dec 09 2021

    The fitness industry has exploded into a nearly $100 billion sector, and Alison Bechdel is among the exercise-obsessed. Bechdel, the cartoonist whose comic strip inspired the Bechdel Test for female representation in Hollywood, says she has found transcendence in everything from yoga and karate to weight lifting and biking. Her book, “The Secret to Superhuman Strength,” came out in May and examines the exercise craze, and what it exposes about our attitudes around self-care, the booming fitness ...more

  • Why Humans Aren’t the Worst (Despite, Well, Everything Happening in the World)

    Dec 06 2021

    In 2019, when Rutger Bregman published his book “Humankind: A Hopeful History” and made a case for the decency of human nature, the world had yet to experience a deadly pandemic. But what does the historian think of humanity now, amid protests against coronavirus lockdowns as well as the climate crisis and the rampant spread of misinformation?“What I see is a world where billions of people radically adjusted their lifestyle to stop the virus from spreading further,” he says.In this conversation,...more

  • Emily Ratajkowski Isn't Quite Ready to Quit Profiting Off the Male Gaze

    Nov 29 2021

    Emily Ratajkowski is winning in the Instagram era: She has 28.6 million followers and has spent more than half her life making a living as a model. But even at her level of success, she still wonders: When you make a living off your desirability, is the power of your body ever just yours?It’s one of the questions she explores in her debut book of essays, “My Body.” Because even now, she’s still working to keep her followers’ attention. “I want them to see me and look at me and also click the lin...more

  • Sway's Newest Listener (and an Update on This Week)

    Nov 22 2021

    You might’ve heard Kara mention she and her partner are expecting a new baby. He’s arrived — four weeks early and right on time — so the team is taking a break this Thanksgiving week. Come back next Monday for her conversation with the model and writer Emily Ratajkowski.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Can The Washington Post De-Snark the News?

    Nov 18 2021

    In May, Sally Buzbee became the first woman to be hired for one of the most coveted jobs in journalism: executive editor of The Washington Post. Since then, Buzbee has overseen ambitious digital investigations into the Jan. 6 capitol attack and how countries’ climate pledges are based on flawed information. But she’s also had to tackle the bigger challenges that come with running a newspaper today: a turbulent media landscape shaped by political polarization, social media and the spread of misin...more

  • What the Metaverse Sounds Like to Hans Zimmer

    Nov 15 2021

    Hans Zimmer has spent his career scoring cinematic worlds, from the ancient Rome of “Gladiator” to the futuristic landscape of “Dune.” So what does the metaverse sound like to him? “It sounds like just some giant, horrible, dehumanizing mess right now,” he says.Zimmer sees tech’s influence everywhere in music. He posits that from drums to violins to synthesizers, “every piece that we use other than the human voice is a piece of technology.” But he’s also cleareyed about how innovations like arti...more

  • The Metaverse: Expectations vs. Reality

    Nov 11 2021

    Mark Zuckerberg might be trying to stake his claim on the metaverse, but he’s far from the first person to envision a more virtual world. Take it from Jaron Lanier.He’s often called the “godfather of virtual reality,” and his company, VPL Research, developed V.R. goggles and gloves in the 1980s. He says he always imagined a metaverse with “a hundred million micro entrepreneurs doing their little thing here and there — there wouldn’t be some overlord.” Now, as big companies like Roblox and Epic b...more

  • Best Of: Sacha Baron Cohen Has a Message for Mark Zuckerberg

    Nov 08 2021

    If there’s one thing the country seems united on, it’s that something needs to change at Facebook. The company has drawn critics across industries and political persuasions, from Silicon Valley to Congress. But one unexpected critic who’s been sounding the alarm long before the Facebook Papers comes, instead, from Hollywood: Sacha Baron Cohen. As revelations from the company's internal documents continue to roll out, Kara revisits her conversation with the actor, which originally aired in Februa...more

  • Is Casey Newton a ‘Facebook Apologist'?

    Nov 04 2021

    The Facebook Papers and whistle-blower testimony have given us yet more insight into the company’s impact on polarization and mental health, but if you could wave a magic wand and “pull the plug on Facebook,” would these problems go away? Casey Newton, the journalist behind the newsletter Platformer, says no. Imagining a universe where “Mark Zuckerberg is not the C.E.O., the company doesn’t exist — I actually don’t think you would improve the internet that much,” he says. He caveats that Faceboo...more

  • Sex Bots and Mortality and A.I., Oh My!

    Nov 01 2021

    As Tesla develops its humanoid robot and Facebook — sorry, now Meta — rebrands to signal its focus on the metaverse and an even more virtual world, some might continue to wonder whether an Armageddon that will have artificial intelligence overpowering humans is a possibility. But the novelist Jeanette Winterson is more optimistic. Her more utopian view of an A.I.-enabled future depends on more compassionate technologies and the diversification of the leaders driving innovation, who she says are ...more

  • Why Katie Couric Owned Up to Her Regrets

    Oct 28 2021

    Katie Couric has drawn fire for her new memoir, which chronicles over two decades of a TV news career that had her co-hosting with Matt Lauer (who became “cocky and reckless”), working under Les Moonves (“a close-talker with bad breath”) and in competition with the likes of Diane Sawyer (who was “everything I wasn’t”).Yet Couric defends her frankness in this interview with Kara: “What’s the point of writing a book that’s just, like, your greatest hits or a victory lap or a sanitized version of y...more

  • Why Republican Ken Buck Believes in Antitrust and Doesn’t Believe in the ‘Big Lie’

    Oct 25 2021

    Representative Ken Buck has joined forces with the Democratic congressman David Cicilline and others to push through a package of antitrust legislation that could prove damning to companies like Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook. “As a conservative, I don’t think big is bad. I think big is great,” he says. But at the same time, he is quick to clarify that Silicon Valley isn’t the land of “benevolent monopolists” and that leaders like Jeff Bezos need to be more transparent about their business p...more

  • Can a Nobel Peace Prize Protect Maria Ressa From Rodrigo Duterte?

    Oct 21 2021

    Maria Ressa and Dmitri Muratov recently took home the Nobel Peace Prize, marking the first time working journalists have won the award since 1935. Ressa believes the Norwegian Nobel Committee’s decision to recognize journalists this year sends a signal that, once again, “we are on the brink of the rise of fascism.” Through her digital media company Rappler, Ressa has been on the front lines of covering President Rodrigo Duterte’s regime in the Philippines, exposing the leader’s tactics of “viole...more

  • Walt Mossberg's Take on Mark Zuckerberg and More

    Oct 18 2021

    After leaked internal documents in The Wall Street Journal, whistle-blower testimony on Capitol Hill, a global server outage and drops in share price, Facebook has recently taken (another) spectacular beating. But the veteran tech journalist Walt Mossberg says none of it has been a surprise. A longtime friend and mentor of Kara Swisher, he tells her, “I think the company is fundamentally unethical.” And, drawing on his experience covering controversial leaders, including Steve Jobs and Bill Gate...more

  • Adam Schiff on Facebook, Fox News and the Trump Cult

    Oct 14 2021

    It’s been nine months since the Capitol attack, and we still don’t have true accountability. Representative Adam Schiff and the rest of the Jan. 6 House select committee are issuing subpoenas to key witnesses, including Steve Bannon, Dan Scavino and two “Stop the Steal” rally organizers. “No one is off the table,” Schiff says.But in a political ecosystem that is defined in part by the spread of misinformation and polarization on platforms like Facebook and the power of right-wing media outlets l...more

  • Samantha Bee Doesn't Miss Donald Trump

    Oct 11 2021

    The 45th president may have been ripe material for (dark) comedy, but Samantha Bee sure does not miss him. After covering Donald Trump for six seasons on her late night show “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,” she says, “Comedy is better without him. Just the world in general, — the globe — is better without him.” She now has airtime to double down her coverage of other challenges like climate change and the affront to voting and abortion rights.In this conversation, Kara Swisher asks Bee about he...more

  • Is Texas Ready for Matthew McConaughey?

    Oct 07 2021

    When the actor Matthew McConaughey dropped his rom-com act to pursue hard-hitting dramas, Hollywood called it a “McConaissance.” Now we may be on the cusp of the next one, as he mulls over a run for governor of Texas. McConaughey is the first to admit he’s not a conventional pick for Texans. “I’m not a man who comes at politics from a political background,” he says. “I’m a statesman-philosopher, folk-singing poet.” Even so, he has some thoughts about the current political climate, observing, “It...more

  • What if Monica Lewinsky Had Twitter in 1998?

    Oct 04 2021

    Truth and context may seem elusive today, but for Monica Lewinsky they both “went out the door in 1998.” As the investigation into Bill Clinton unfolded, Lewinsky came under scrutiny as the most infamous intern in Washington, but kept largely silent due to an immunity deal with investigators. In this conversation with Kara Swisher, Lewinsky says she and the other women entangled in the president’s impeachment “were all reduced in different ways to serve purposes for other people: for either poli...more

  • Can Andrew Yang End America’s 2-Party System?

    Sep 30 2021

    Andrew Yang failed in his campaigns for president of the United States and mayor of New York City, but that has not stopped him from trying to disrupt the political status quo with a new party, which he has named “Forward.” This time, the candidate known for evangelizing universal basic income, or U.B.I., is championing ideas like open primaries and rank-choice voting (which, incidentally, was the voting system used in the mayoral race he lost). But critics are skeptical that he needs to work ou...more

  • Can Beto O’Rourke Pull a Stacey Abrams?

    Sep 27 2021

    Beto O’Rourke came close to unseating Senator Ted Cruz in 2018 and fell far from winning the presidency in 2020. Now the former El Paso congressman has turned his attention back home. He’s been a key organizer and fund-raiser in the fight against Republicans’ efforts to restrict voting rights in the state, including their recent passage of S.B.1. He’s also rumored to be considering a run for Texas governor in 2022 — a race he describes as crucial given “the deep damage and chaos and incompetence...more

  • How They Failed: C.A. Republicans, Media Critics and Facebook Leadership

    Sep 23 2021

    In a special Opinion Audio bonanza, Kara Swisher, Jane Coaston (The Argument) and Ezra Klein (The Ezra Klein Show) sit down to discuss what went wrong for the G.O.P. in the recall election of Gov. Gavin Newsom of California. “This was where the nationalization of politics really bit back for Republicans,” Jane says. The three hosts then debate whether the media industry’s criticism of itself does any good at all. “The media tweets like nobody’s watching,” Ezra says. Then the hosts turn to The Wa...more

  • What Is 23andMe Doing With Your DNA?

    Sep 20 2021

    Anne Wojcicki is sitting on a treasure trove of genetic data. The co-founder and chief executive of 23andMe has led the genetic testing company through 14 years in which it has collected data from millions of customers through their at-home DNA spit test kits. In 2018, the company announced a collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline to use this anonymized, aggregated data to develop new pharmaceutical drugs — and attracted a $300 million investment from the pharmaceutical giant. And in June, when Wojc...more

  • Jeffrey Katzenberg Talks About His Billion-Dollar Flop

    Sep 16 2021

    The public failure of his start-up Quibi hasn’t stopped Jeffrey Katzenberg from doubling down on tech. A Hollywood power broker, he headed up Disney in the 1980s and ’90s and co-founded a rival studio, DreamWorks, before finding a puzzle he could not yet solve: getting people to pay for short-format content. Investors gave him and the former Hewlett-Packard C.E.O. and California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman $1.75 billion to build a video platform, but not enough customers opened up their ...more

  • Is Limitless Choice Killing Us Slowly?

    Sep 13 2021

    Imagine a world in which Google and Amazon join together to form an all-knowing corporate juggernaut that could program our every movement. Author Dave Eggers has contemplated such a future in his latest dystopian novel “The Every.” Eggers, who limits his own use of technology to the bare minimum, says he was inspired by the limitless choice of our digital world and the idea of a data-driven tech monopoly that would use “your preferences and algorithmic-determined personality” to help you “becom...more

  • When Will Hollywood Stop Stereotyping Muslims?

    Sep 09 2021

    Since 9/11, and even before, Hollywood’s portrayal of Muslims has emboldened inaccurate stereotypes of dangerous villains or jihadist terrorists. In addition to misrepresenting Muslims, the industry has also arguably underrepresented this population — one U.S.C. study found Muslims represented 1.6 percent of speaking roles in recent major films. Actor, musician and activist Riz Ahmed is challenging this status quo in a career that has included playing a guileless assistant struggling to make end...more

  • Why Ashton Kutcher and Julie Cordua Are Defending Apple

    Sep 02 2021

    Apple has long been a pioneer on privacy, and has made that a central part of its marketing. So it was surprising to see privacy groups complain last month when it announced new features meant to combat child sexual abuse.The updates were intended to make a dent in the rapid proliferation of child sexual abuse material online — the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children logged 21.7 million reports of such material in 2020 alone. But because one of these updates involves software that...more

  • Is Kara Behind on Barbie?

    Aug 30 2021

    Mattel went through three chief executives in four years before Ynon Kreiz took the job in 2018. He stood the test of time in part because of a big bet: taking Mattel's toys to Hollywood. The toy giant is partnering with Greta Gerwig and Margot Robbie to bring Barbie to life on the big screen, and creating films based on everything from UNO to Magic 8 Ball. It’s a strategy that draws on Kreiz’s past experience at entertainment companies like Maker Studios and Endemol, and one that draws inspirat...more

  • Why Vaccine Mandates for Teachers Have Been a Harder Sell Than Mask Mandates for Kids

    Aug 26 2021

    As the pandemic has pushed the country into a debate about when and how to reopen schools, Randi Weingarten has faced the ire of parents, teachers, school boards and — of course — Fox News. The president of the American Federation of Teachers leads a union of 1.7 million educators across the nation. She’s been on the hook for pressing to keep school closed last fall and supporting mask mandates in classrooms this year. And most recently, she drew criticism from her own members when she personall...more

  • Yes, the Owner of a Movie Theater Chain Feels Bad for Me

    Aug 23 2021

    When Kara Swisher wrote a column declaring her love for Vin Diesel and predicting that we will not be returning to movie theaters, Tim League felt sorry for her. He’s the founder of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, a luxury movie theater chain that opened in Austin over 20 years ago and has since expanded nationally. The pandemic has not been kind to the company, which he notes was in “dire” condition by December and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this year. But League still remains bullish abo...more

  • How Jason Miller Is Trying to Get Trump Back on the Internet

    Aug 19 2021

    Social media has felt quieter without the constant ALL CAPS fury of Donald Trump, but Jason Miller is trying to change that.Miller, who was the former president’s longtime aide and spokesman, recently took a new gig running a social media platform called Gettr, which claims to be a haven from censorship and cancel culture. It may sound a little like Parler 2.0, but the game-changer for Gettr — which has a little under two million users — would be if Miller can get Trump to create an account and ...more

  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt: ‘Silicon Valley Now Owns Hollywood.’

    Aug 16 2021

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt is deep in Silicon Valley these days. No, he’s not pitching a start-up (though he does have one of those): He is playing Uber’s former chief executive Travis Kalanick in an upcoming Showtime anthology series. And while Gordon-Levitt has some thoughts about society’s “overblown deification of technology,” he is relatively bullish on Silicon Valley and the trend of tech companies taking over Hollywood.In this conversation, Kara Swisher and Gordon-Levitt discuss what this shift...more

  • Should We Worry As Billionaires Buy Up Newspapers?

    Aug 12 2021

    Patrick Soon-Shiong, the owner of the Los Angeles Times, says we should — and he’s one of those billionaires. In 2018, Soon-Shiong — who minted his fortune by inventing a cancer drug in the 1990s — scooped up the Los Angeles Times, the San Diego Union-Tribune and a group of smaller newspapers for a cool $500 million. Since then, he’s been obsessed with two things: modernizing his media empire and continuing his medical pursuits, most recently with an experimental Covid-19 vaccine.In this convers...more

  • Michael Pollan's 'Trip Report'

    Aug 09 2021

    Michael Pollan has brewed tea from opium poppies, quit caffeine cold turkey and tried mescaline, a psychedelic found in some kinds of cactus. While the author’s past works have taken on the Western diet and the cultural attitude toward psychedelics, in “This Is Your Mind on Plants,” Pollan wages a war against — well, the government’s war on drugs. He argues that the approach to regulation has been selective and self-serving, making him “question whether the real rationale of the drug war was eve...more

  • $54 Billion Later, Why Is Flying Still a Headache?

    Aug 05 2021

    As the pandemic locked down cities and would-be travelers stayed home, the airline industry begged the government for  bailouts — and got them, to the tune of $54 billion. The funds were supposed to help airlines avoid furloughs and ramp up more quickly once travel returned. But this summer, chaos hit anyway, with airlines like American, Southwest, and Spirit racking up cancellations in the face of crew shortages.In this conversation, Kara Swisher asks Doug Parker, the C.E.O. and chairman of Ame...more

  • Is Ken Burns Taking Up Too Much Space? He Doesn’t Think So.

    Aug 02 2021

    From “deepfaking” Anthony Bourdain’s voice to reconstructing a re-education camp in Xinjiang — technologies like A.I. voice generation and V.R. are warping the boundaries of documentary filmmaking. So how does a veteran like Ken Burns, who has spent over 40 years documenting American history, think about the ethical questions attached to these tools?In this conversation, Kara Swisher learns why Burns was “very troubled” by the use of A.I. voice generation in a recent documentary about the late c...more

  • Would You Give Up Google for This?

    Jul 29 2021

    Call it a redemption narrative: After working to grow Google’s lucrative advertising business for 15 years, Sridhar Ramaswamy left the Silicon Valley Goliath to co-found Neeva, a subscription-based search engine that promises not to profit off its customers’ search data. It sounds good in theory; many companies have exploited user data under the guise of their free services. But whether Neeva can get users to care enough about their data to pay for privacy is a whole other story.In this conversa...more

  • ‘It’s a Tough Time to Be Mayor’: Lori Lightfoot Responds to Her Critics

    Jul 26 2021

    Mayors across the country are facing heat. Bill DeBlasio was New York’s default punching bag (perhaps deservedly) throughout the pandemic. Keisha Lance Bottoms decided to forgo seeking a second term as the mayor of Atlanta. And in Chicago, Lori Lightfoot faces critics at every turn. Lightfoot, who in describing herself says, “Roll it all up — I’m Black, I’m female, I’m a lesbian, and no one expected me to win,” is two years into a term that has been defined by a brutal pandemic, a deeply unequal...more

  • Robot Therapists? Not So Fast, Says Talkspace C.E.O.

    Jul 22 2021

    Talk therapy has seen a boom during the pandemic. And with mental health chat bots like Woebot on the market and text therapy platforms like Talkspace going public, the possibility of humans outsourcing our behavioral health to algorithmic healers is only growing — along with the ethical questions attached to it. So Kara Swisher turned to Oren Frank, a co-founder and the chief executive of Talkspace, to ask what the increasing technologization of therapy means for treatment efficacy and for priv...more

  • Kara Goes to the Olympics

    Jul 19 2021

    People love the Olympics. But this year’s Games, which open on Friday, are plagued with controversial suspensions and public pushback, not to mention the pandemic. How did we get here?That’s a question for Dick Pound. He’s a member of the International Olympic Committee and was the founding president of the World Anti-Doping Agency. In this conversation, Kara Swisher asks Pound to break down the I.O.C.’s decision to move forward with the Games as the Delta variant of the coronavirus threatens to...more

  • The Ezra Klein Show: Sam Altman on the A.I. Revolution, Trillionaires and the Future of Political Power

    Jul 15 2021

    Kara's on vacation this week, so we're bringing you an episode of another great Times Opinion podcast, 'The Ezra Klein Show.' “The technological progress we make in the next 100 years will be far larger than all we’ve made since we first controlled fire and invented the wheel,” writes Sam Altman in his essay “Moore’s Law for Everything.” “This revolution will generate enough wealth for everyone to have what they need, if we as a society manage it responsibly.”Altman is the C.E.O. of OpenAI, one ...more

  • The Argument: Not Everyone Is Worried About America's Falling Birthrates

    Jul 12 2021

    Kara's on vacation this week, so we're bringing you an episode of another great Times Opinion podcast, The Argument.U.S. birthrates have fallen by 4 percent, hitting a record low. And it’s not just America — people around the world are having fewer children, from South Korea to South America.In some ways, this seems inevitable. From an economic standpoint, there’s the expensive trio of child rearing, education and health care in America. From a cultural perspective, women have more financial and...more

  • Chelsea Handler Has a Message for Straight Men

    Jul 08 2021

    Chelsea Handler says men are “on probation” — at least the ones who don’t seem to grasp how the country’s social justice movement is reshaping how we talk about, well, everything. The female comic has crossed the line in her own career, including posting racially insensitive tweets. But she claims the current political climate, therapy (and cannabis) have led to a “kinder and gentler” persona that will be on the stage as she returns to the road this July in her new standup tour, titled “Vaccinat...more

  • What’s Keeping Biden’s Chief of Staff Up at Night?

    Jul 01 2021

    Ron Klain tells Kara Swisher it’s “everything” — except, apparently, the midterms. As White House chief of staff, Klain helps determine how the president spends scarce resources like time and political capital.He and Kara speak at a moment when the country is shy of President Biden’s July 4 vaccine target and the administration has just averted the unraveling of a bipartisan infrastructure deal that still has to crawl through a polarized Congress. Kara presses Klain on whether the president’s am...more

  • A Guy Fieri Pep Talk

    Jun 28 2021

    Guy Fieri recently inked an $80 million deal with the Food Network, making him the highest-paid chef on cable TV. He did this on the heels of a brutal year for the restaurant industry, which, according to the National Restaurant Association, has lost approximately $290 billion since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and seen insufficient relief from the federal government. While the airline industry received a big bailout in March 2020, as well as additional payroll support through the pandemic...more

  • Exercise, and Accept Your ‘Inevitable Demise’

    Jun 24 2021

    The fitness industry has exploded into a nearly $100 billion sector, and Alison Bechdel is among the exercise-obsessed. Bechdel, the cartoonist whose comic strip inspired the Bechdel Test for female representation in Hollywood, says she has found transcendence in everything from yoga and karate to weight lifting and biking. Her new book, “The Secret to Superhuman Strength,” examines the exercise craze, and what it exposes about our attitudes around self-care, the booming fitness economy and even...more

  • Dr. Fauci Claps Back

    Jun 21 2021

    Anthony Fauci doesn’t have a Twitter account. But he does have a lot to say about the recent scrutiny following the release of his emails from 2020 — an especially busy time in his tenure as America’s chief immunologist. Republicans like Ron DeSantis have used the emails as fodder for criticism, accusing him of “faucism” (yes, that’s a play on fascism). Fauci’s response: “Here’s a guy whose entire life has been devoted to saving lives. And now you’re telling me he’s like Hitler? Come on, folks. ...more

  • Is This the Big Tech Breakup We’ve Been Waiting For?

    Jun 17 2021

    Representative David Cicilline’s bipartisan package takes aim at tech companies and would be the biggest antitrust reform in decades. But is it too little, too fragmented and way too late? The tech-savvy Democrat is joining forces with Republicans like Ken Buck and Burgess Owens to push through a large suite of new antitrust legislation aimed at Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google. If the five bills are passed (without being watered down), they will empower regulators, raise the bar for mergers a...more

  • Inside the I.R.S. Files of the Ultra-Wealthy

    Jun 14 2021

    It’s an open secret that the uber-rich don’t pay their fair share in taxes. But Jesse Eisinger and his team at ProPublica have unearthed the numbers to back that up. In “The Secret I.R.S. Files,” they combed through more than 15 years of federal income tax records, revealing that Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, George Soros and many more have paid as little as $0 in recent years. By amassing and borrowing off their wealth, while minimizing how much of it is treated as income, these billionaires live outs...more

  • Meet Big Tech’s Tormenter-in-Chief

    Jun 10 2021

    Margrethe Vestager and Kara Swisher have something in common: They both have made it their job to keep watch on Jeff Bezos, Tim Cook, Mark Zuckerberg and the other titans of tech. Vestager does this from her post as the head of the European Commission’s antitrust division. And while Swisher may regularly opine on what drives tech C.E.O.s, Vestager isn’t interested in “soul-searching” their motives. She’s focused on catching them in the act — whether it’s companies sliding from “aggressive tax pl...more

  • Silicon Valley’s Thin Skins and Giant Egos

    Jun 07 2021

    From allegations that Bill Gates had been coming on to Microsoft employees to the $22.5 million settlement of a gender discrimination suit against Pinterest, women in Silicon Valley are speaking out against what is still a male-dominated culture.Ellen Pao was one of the first to do that. In 2012, she sued the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers for gender discrimination. Back then, she says, she was met with skepticism at the very idea that the industry suffered from sexism at ...more

  • Women’s Basketball Is on the Rise. Is Anyone Paying Attention?

    Jun 03 2021

    LeBron James and Steph Curry are household names and brand magnates, but Diana Taurasi and A’ja Wilson haven’t quite reached that level. That’s despite being, respectively, the W.N.B.A.’s career top scorer and reigning MVP. And it’s despite the average viewership for the 2020 women’s basketball finals shooting up 15 percent from the previous year — while the men’s finals saw a 49 percent drop. In a sport that’s beloved and at a time when female athletes are raising their profiles (think Naomi Os...more

  • Is Jake Tapper for Sale?

    May 27 2021

    AT&T owns CNN — for now. But one day Netflix and Apple could be in a bidding war for the CNN anchor Jake Tapper. That’s Kara's take, anyway. It could be the next step in the streaming wars, and a natural evolution for an increasingly personality-driven cable news business that is under pressure to compete with the 24/7 engagement — and enragement — of social media.In this conversation, Kara and Tapper discuss the potential spinoff of CNN’s parent company, WarnerMedia, from AT&T, what the post-Tr...more

  • How Online Sleuths Pantsed Putin

    May 24 2021

    It turns out you can use a prank call to expose suspected poisoners, mole patterns to identify a violent demonstrator at a white nationalist rally and online videos to reveal a weapons-smuggling operation to Syrian rebels.At least, Eliot Higgins and the online sleuths at the open source investigative operation Bellingcat can. Since Higgins founded the organization in 2014, his team has helped break major stories, from unearthing evidence that ties Russia to the downing of Malaysia Airlines Fligh...more

  • Can Snapchat Win the War Against TikTok?

    May 20 2021

    Snap Inc. lost nearly $40 million when it introduced its first pair of camera-laden Spectacles in 2016. But the company’s C.E.O., Evan Spiegel, is trying again. He announced on Thursday that Snap is launching a new version of its Spectacles with augmented-reality capabilities. While it will take years for the technology to be in the hands of most consumers, it will allow them to view their physical surroundings with visual overlays. It’s one of several innovations Spiegel announced — alongside n...more

  • We're Running a Little Late!

    May 20 2021

    Kara's conversation with Snap C.E.O. Evan Spiegel will be coming out at 2 p.m., Eastern today!You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Algorithms Make Fewer Mistakes Than Humans. Why Don't We Trust Them?

    May 17 2021

    The Nobel Prize-winning behavioral economist Daniel Kahneman on why human “noise” makes systems less fair.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Inside the Republican Anti-Transgender Machine

    May 13 2021

    A.C.L.U. attorney Chase Strangio on the coordinated strategy behind the more than 100 anti-transgender bills introduced this year. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Who Wins in a Meme Stock World?

    May 10 2021

    Jannick Malling, Public’s co-C.E.O., weighs the risks and rewards of the retail trading boom.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Inside the Decision on Trump’s Facebook Fate

    May 07 2021

    Alan Rusbridger led The Guardian through the Snowden revelations and WikiLeaks. Now, he's on the Facebook Oversight Board. He explains how the decision went down. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • ‘It’s His Own Damn Fault,’ Frank Luntz Says of Trump and Facebook

    May 06 2021

    Veteran Republican pollster Frank Luntz has never felt so gloomy.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Can Pete Buttigieg Deliver Joe Manchin?

    May 03 2021

    Biden's $2 trillion infrastructure plan may depend on it.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Why is So Much Money Moving to Miami?

    Apr 29 2021

    The city might be sinking, but Mayor Francis Suarez is still luring tech bros there.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Why Does the C.I.A. Need Puppets?

    Apr 26 2021

    And where does it get them? The agency’s top technologist Dawn Meyerriecks talks spy gear and why Hollywood and Silicon Valley play a critical role in national security.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • The Evolution of Desus & Mero

    Apr 22 2021

    From Twitter to cable TV, the duo is changing the culture of comedy.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • She's Taking Jeff Bezos to Task

    Apr 19 2021

    Joy Buolamwini is on a crusade against bias in facial recognition technology, and the powerful companies that profit from it.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • CNN Is in a Post-Trump Slump. What Does That Mean for Don Lemon?

    Apr 15 2021

    The prime-time host on the future of cable news, the urgency of conversations about race and whether CNN is a boys’ club.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • A Public Health Lesson for Ron DeSantis, From Harvard

    Apr 12 2021

    Michelle A. Williams, an epidemiologist and Harvard dean, urges politicians to focus on public health if they want a strong economy.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • A 5 O’Clock Shuttle to Mars?

    Apr 08 2021

    Diana Trujillo, a NASA flight director, discusses the future of space travel and the search for signs of life on the red planet.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Is Apple's Privacy Push Facebook's Existential Threat?

    Apr 05 2021

    Apple C.E.O. Tim Cook says it's not.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Why It's Taken Us So Long to Talk About Anti-Asian Racism

    Apr 01 2021

    The writer and poet Cathy Park Hong discusses Asian outrage and why she's seeking power, not assimilation. You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Amy Klobuchar vs. Silicon Valley

    Mar 29 2021

    The senator presents her case for regulating big tech and why it’s time to "make antitrust cool again."You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • The Spiritual Teacher Biden’s Campaign Called for Help

    Mar 25 2021

    Glennon Doyle says her role has been to “go get the white women.”You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • What the Heck are NFTs? Let's Ask Beeple.

    Mar 22 2021

    The artist, whose real name is Mike Winklemann, just sold an encrypted digital collage for $69 million. So are non-fungible tokens the next new asset class, or is it all hype?You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Airbnb Has a Hate Group Problem Too

    Mar 18 2021

    But it’s not the same as Facebook’s. C.E.O. Brian Chesky discusses why he and Mark Zuckerberg have different consequences to consider.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Stop Whining About Big Government

    Mar 15 2021

    Economist Mariana Mazzucato says the narrative that the private sector drives innovation is only half the story.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Spike Lee Predicts the Future

    Mar 11 2021

    The director of “Da 5 Bloods” talks about why his old movies still resonate, whether an awards snub even matters and how it’s not his job to end racism.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • I Asked the Head of Space Force What the Agency Has Done for Me Lately

    Mar 08 2021

    Gen. John Raymond has put up with plenty of mockery. But, he says, there’s nothing funny about protecting U.S. interests from Russian and Chinese anti-satellite technology.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Stacey Abrams on American Idealism and American Betrayal

    Mar 04 2021

     After she helped win major Democratic victories in Georgia, the right is retaliating, and it’s getting personal. But Abrams says she doesn’t mind; it’s all about the long game.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • If Government Did Its Job We Might Not Need GoFundMe

    Mar 01 2021

    The crowdfunding platform helps people pay their rent and medical bills. Its chief executive, Tim Cadogan, says it was never meant to be a social safety net.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Sacha Baron Cohen Has a Message for Mark Zuckerberg

    Feb 25 2021

    The actor who, as Borat, drew our attention to racism, misogyny and autocratic propaganda calls out the social media companies who profit off these trends.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Lessons on Resilience From Dogs and Dog Sledders

    Feb 22 2021

    The adventurer Blair Braverman has led a team of sled dogs over a 900-mile race in Alaska, seen her skin dissolve in the desert and overcome Covid-19. What makes it all less terrifying? Accepting the unknown.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Bonus: Is Kara a Chump?

    Feb 19 2021

    Kara’s conversation yesterday with Oberlin College’s president, Carmen Twillie Ambar, touched on the cost of a college education and why “sticker prices” are so high. She called up Ron Lieber, who writes the “Your Money” column for The Times, to discuss.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • No Parties. No Sports. How Oberlin College Is Surviving the Pandemic.

    Feb 18 2021

    Colleges across the country are figuring out how Covid has changed the college experience, while parents are struggling to understand why schools haven’t changed their price tag.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Innovation, Not Trees. How Bill Gates Plans to Save the Planet

    Feb 15 2021

    He has billions to donate for crises from coronavirus to climate change, and more hope now that Trump is out of office.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Fran Lebowitz Isn’t Buying What Jack Dorsey Is Selling

    Feb 11 2021

    The 70-year old social commentator and humorist doesn’t have a smartphone. That doesn’t stop her from having a take on big tech (and everything else).You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Bonus: Kara and Nicole Perlroth Debrief on Brad Smith

    Feb 09 2021

    Kara’s conversation on Monday with Microsoft’s president, Brad Smith, touched on Russia, the attack on SolarWinds software and how the U.S. government deals with hacks. She hopped on a call with the Times cybersecurity reporter Nicole Perlroth to discuss.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Should Big Tech Stay Out of Politics?

    Feb 08 2021

    The president of Microsoft says "absolutely not" — at least when it comes to his company. Brad Smith discusses Microsoft's new guidelines for political contributions, the six stages of antitrust grief and how corporations — and the U.S. government — missed the SolarWinds Hack.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Why GameStop Reminds Mark Cuban of the ’90s

    Feb 04 2021

    The billionaire says the current stock market is reminiscent of the first dot-com boom. “Everybody’s a genius in a bull market — until they’re not.”You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Is it Investing or Cliff Jumping? Reddit C.E.O. on the Forum Shaking Up Wall Street

    Feb 01 2021

    Shares of GameStop shot up 400 percent last week, egged on by the Reddit forum r/WallStreetBets. The online community rallied to drive up the stock price and put the squeeze on big hedge funds who had bet against the struggling video game retailer. Reddit chief executive Steve Huffman — who calls  r/WallStreetBets one of his “guilty pleasures” — described this as “the online stock-betting equivalent of, like, jumping off a cliff into a river.”On this episode of “Sway,” Kara speaks to Huffman abo...more

  • What if the ‘Karate Kid’ Isn’t the Hero?

    Jan 28 2021

    The “Karate Kid” was a hero of the 1980s. Now he’s back, with the actor Ralph Macchio reprising the role for the series “Cobra Kai.” The story is ostensibly a classic battle between a hero and a villain. But as Mr. Macchio notes, it’s actually more complex. Audiences, he says, “recognize the good and bad in both these guys and are rooting for both with their two separate types of shortcomings and problems and demons.”On this episode of “Sway,” Kara  and Mr. Macchio discuss how “Cobra Kai” got fr...more

  • Bonus: Kara and Kevin Roose Debrief on Chris Best

    Jan 26 2021

    Kara’s conversation on Monday with Chris Best, the chief executive of Substack, hit on echo chambers, extremism and the future of journalism. Afterward, she called up the Times tech columnist Kevin Roose to discuss.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • The Site Trump Could Run to Next

    Jan 25 2021

    Facebook and Twitter have kicked Donald Trump off their platforms and Amazon Web Services removed Parler from its cloud. But there’s another popular platform that markets itself as the destination for free speech: Substack.With more than 250,000 unique individuals paying for the newsletters on its platform, Substack is a lot smaller than Twitter or Facebook. Still, it’s a rapidly growing space for big media personalities who want to reach their audience directly. Glenn Greenwald, Andrew Sullivan...more

  • A Black and Asian Female V.P. Doesn’t Mean We’ve Escaped Caste

    Jan 21 2021

    At the inauguration on Wednesday, Kamala Harris became vice president — the nation’s first Black person, the first Asian person and the first woman to do so — and President Biden spoke of “a cry for racial justice some 400 years in the making,” adding that “the dream of justice for all will be deferred no longer.”But according to Isabel Wilkerson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and historian, change may not come so easily. Her reporting reveals that the systems of power in America are deepl...more

  • Bryan Cranston Won’t Play Donald Trump

    Jan 19 2021

    Bryan Cranston has built his reputation playing powerful men, from President Lyndon B. Johnson to  Walter White in "Breaking Bad" to  Michael Desiato in "Your Honor." On this episode of "Sway," the Tony and Emmy-winning actor breaks down his method, the motivations behind the larger-than-life men he plays and why he draws the line at playing the Scarecrow in "The Wizard of Oz" or the President currently in the White House.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all epis...more

  • Food Delivery Is Keeping Uber Alive. Will It Kill Restaurants?

    Jan 14 2021

    Uber’s chief executive, Dara Khosrowshahi, is charging toward a world in which food is delivered through apps like Uber Eats and “a driver may be human or may be software.” On the way, he acknowledges, “the human consequences can be painful.” Uber is not profitable yet, but its deep pockets and vast infrastructure give it power over independent restaurants and individual drivers. He says, “Do I feel guilty about it? No.”On this episode of “Sway,” Kara Swisher asks Mr. Khosrowshahi about the plig...more

  • Anna Wintour on the Kamala Harris Vogue Cover

    Jan 12 2021

    The February cover of Vogue featuring Vice President-elect Kamala Harris kicked off a controversy involving the most powerful woman in fashion and the soon-to-be most powerful woman in the White House. In a multiday social media maelstrom, a leaked cover photo that Anna Wintour originally described as “joyful,” “casual” and “accessible” was deemed “disrespectful” by Twitter. According to people familiar with the matter on both sides, although there had been no contractual cover approval agreemen...more

  • Inside the Billion-Dollar War Against Right-Wing Conspiracists

    Jan 11 2021

    Dominion Voting Systems has filed a $1.3 Billion defamation suit against former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell. Chief Executive John Poulos says it’s the “first step” in the voting machine company’s efforts to counter a “malicious campaign of lies” spread by right wing media outlets and members of Donald Trump's inner circle.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • If You Were on Parler, You Saw the Mob Coming

    Jan 07 2021

    Update: Jan. 11, 2020Parler went offline Monday after Amazon stopped providing it with web-hosting services. This followed Apple and Google’s removal of Parler’s app from their app stores. In notices to Parler about these decisions, both Apple and Amazon cited chief executive John Matze’s statement in this episode of “Sway” that “I don’t feel responsible for any of this and neither should the platform.”A mob stormed Washington and Twitter locked the account of a president who helped incite this ...more

  • What’s Next in Your Netflix Queue?

    Jan 04 2021

    Bela Bajaria has an unprecedented job at Netflix. In an executive shake-up this year, she was elevated from head of “local language” (read: non-English) productions to a newly created role, head of global television (read: all TV, everywhere). Her promotion signals how much Netflix is banking on international markets and diverse content to help it win the streaming wars.Ms. Bajaria previously ran Universal Television, the studio arm of NBC. She was behind many of the shows the world has been wat...more

  • This Astrologer Has Some Things to Tell Kara Swisher

    Dec 28 2020

    Astrology has been around for thousands of years, so why are “Mercury in retrograde” memes and horoscopes still so popular in 2020? “We all need, at some point or another, to have someone say: ‘Yeah, that’s how you were made, and that’s perfect. Now, go do your thing,’” says Chani Nicholas, one of the internet era’s most prominent astrologers. In this episode, she demystifies the $2.2 billion industry of astrology — and reads Kara's birth chart.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more i...more

  • Bonus: Kara and Nick Kristof Debrief on Ajay Banga

    Dec 22 2020

    On yesterday’s episode of Sway, the chief executive of Mastercard spoke about why the company blocked subscription payments on Pornhub. Was it too little too late? Kara asks Nicholas Kristof, the journalist whose reporting on child pornography forced the payment company’s hand.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Your Card Payment Has Been Declined

    Dec 21 2020

    Ajay Banga has spent a decade as chief executive of Mastercard. Last year, he oversaw $6.5 trillion in transactions. That means he knows what we’re spending right now (aggregated and anonymized, of course) and how long it might take to get us out of our current economic funk. It also means Mr. Banga has leverage over virtually any business that relies on credit card payments.For example, following recent reporting from New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof on the scale of child pornography o...more

  • Can Kara be Vulnerable?

    Dec 17 2020

    Brené Brown’s best-selling books and TED talks about embracing vulnerability and shame have made her a cultural phenomenon. Silicon Valley executives often invite her to speak to their companies, though she is skeptical about their intentions to follow through on her advice. “For some people, I am the kombucha shake of the month,” she says.In this episode of Sway, she’s taking on the toughest case of all: the self-proclaimed “vulnerability skeptic” Kara Swisher.You can find transcripts (posted m...more

  • Bonus: Kara and Maggie Haberman Debrief on Brad Raffensperger

    Dec 15 2020

    Kara's interview with Georgia’s Secretary of State was a doozy. This episode refers back to yesterday’s episode, “Georgia’s Secretary of State on Standing Up to Trump."You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.

  • Georgia's Secretary of State on Standing Up to Trump

    Dec 14 2020

    Georgia begins early voting today in two runoffs that will decide the composition of the next U.S. Senate. If Democrats win both seats, the Senate will be split 50-50 (with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris acting as tiebreaker). If they don’t, it will be controlled by Republicans who stand ready to block most actions of a Biden presidency.Brad Raffensperger is the man overseeing Georgia’s critical race. As secretary of state, his role is to ensure that the election is fair and — he hopes — dra...more

  • Bonus: Kara Swisher and Ben Smith Debrief on Jason Kilar

    Dec 11 2020

    This week, Kara Swisher interviewed WarnerMedia’s chief executive, Jason Kilar, fresh on the heels of the announcement that Warner Bros. will release its 2021 film slate in theaters and on its streaming site, HBO Max, simultaneously. (If you missed that episode — scroll back and hit play! Or click here if you’re on the World Wide Web).In this bonus episode of “Sway,” Kara Swisher and the New York Times media columnist Ben Smith discuss what the news means for the future of the film industry, and...more

  • Movie Theaters Are Dying. Did Jason Kilar Deal the Final Blow?

    Dec 10 2020

    If you want to be the first to watch “Dune,” “Godzilla vs. Kong” or the new “Matrix” movie this year (yes, there’s a fourth one) — you won’t have to line up at a movie theater. That’s because Jason Kilar, the C.E.O. of WarnerMedia, announced last week that the full slate of Warner Bros. films will be simultaneously released in theaters and on the company’s streaming service, HBO Max.Mr. Kilar is only seven months into the job, and he just unleashed one of the biggest industry shake-ups in recent...more

  • Lifestyles of the ‘More Famous Than Rich’

    Dec 07 2020

    Steven Galanis is helping celebrities get into the gig economy. He launched his company, Cameo, three years ago as a marketplace for the famous (and not-so-famous) to sell personalized shout-outs.For $500, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar may wish you a happy birthday. For $200, Ian Ziering (a.k.a. Steve Sanders from the original “Beverly Hills, 90210”) can send your mom a Happy Mother’s Day greeting. And for $10, the company’s chief executive, Mr. Galanis, will wish your kid’s team good luck on its next hoc...more

  • They Made the ‘Pfizer Vaccine’

    Dec 03 2020

    Dr. Ozlem Tureci and Dr. Ugur Sahin, the co-founders of BioNTech, are behind the first coronavirus vaccine to be approved in the West. Starting next week, the “Pfizer vaccine” will be available in Britain.While Pfizer is financing and distributing the vaccine, the science behind it was actually spearheaded by the couple’s lesser-known company. When Drs. Tureci and Sahin, along with their BioNTech team, embarked on this mission, the record for the fastest vaccine creation was four years. They did...more

  • In Hollywood, Women Are Seen as ‘a Risk’

    Nov 30 2020

    Marielle Heller had her big acting break in “The Queens Gambit,” a chess drama that has already been viewed on Netflix by over 60 million households. But prior to her performance as Alma Wheatley, Ms. Heller was already a big name — off the screen.She directed award-winning films like 2019’s “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” and 2018’s “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” Female directors remain a minority in the U.S. film industry, and Ms. Heller has spent her career navigating what she describes as ...more

  • Jane Goodall on Chimps, Presidents and Other Alpha Males

    Nov 23 2020

    Jane Goodall is an expert on alpha males — for decades, she’s been studying them in chimpanzee communities. She’s also inspired leaders in business, politics and culture to change their approach to animals and the environment.It’s been 60 years since Dr. Goodall’s first excursion to observe primates in Africa. Her discoveries there, which transformed our understanding of animals, continue to inspire generations of scientists and environmental activists.Now, at the age of 86, she reflects on her ...more

  • Why 3rd Grade Matters

    Nov 19 2020

    Harvard economist Raj Chetty believes that there’s a way to push past America’s political divide: data.Mr. Chetty, head of the Harvard-based research group Opportunity Insights, has amassed a powerhouse of information drawing on everything from I.R.S. tax filings to credit card spending. Armed with that data, he’s able to understand whether meritocracy — or inequality — determines the economic fate of Americans. He’s also able to translate datapoints into accessible visualizations and concrete p...more

  • At-Home Covid Tests and Other Powers of a Tech Billionaire

    Nov 16 2020

    Chamath Palihapitiya is one of Silicon Valley’s most successful tech investors. He’s also among the most candid. “I aspire to be a Koch brother before I aspire to be an under secretary,” he tells Kara Swisher on this episode of “Sway.” His definition of power has little to do with politics — it’s profits, he says, that empower you to “control the resources.”Mr. Palihapitiya made his first fortune as an early executive at Facebook. He has since multiplied his wealth as an investor, with big bets ...more

  • Math Lessons From Pennsylvania

    Nov 12 2020

    In the postelection uncertainty, all eyes were on Pennsylvania. And John Fetterman, the state’s Twitter-famous lieutenant governor, held court. He rallied Democrats with one-liners and taunted President Trump with arithmetic lessons on Twitter. Mr. Trump can try to challenge the election result, he said, but “you can’t litigate math.”Mr. Fetterman, the former mayor of a Rust Belt town, is 6-foot-8, with tattoos, a shaved head and a graduate degree in public policy from Harvard. He’s not your sta...more

  • Post-Election Therapy With Esther Perel

    Nov 09 2020

    With a divisive election, an economy in a tailspin and a global pandemic, we could all use a little healing. Enter Esther Perel, an author and psychotherapist with the power to help mend relationships. “We have a screaming match, but we have a foundation underneath that,” she says.In this episode of Sway, the couples counselor offers some advice: to Kara Swisher — on how to handle her Trump-loving mother, to Nancy Pelosi — on why she might be wise to surprise Donald Trump with a hug — and to all...more

  • ‘Some Version of the Apocalypse Is Inevitable’

    Nov 05 2020

    Jeff VanderMeer has built his career imagining weird futures in best-selling books like “Annihilation” and “Borne.” He says an apocalypse doesn’t have to mean the end of the world, but a reimagining of how we live on it.He’s doing just that in his own backyard, making homes for raccoons and “rewilding” the land with native species. “We spend a lot of time keeping the outside, outside,” says VanderMeer, who sees his writing as a form of activism. But “there’s less divide between our bodies and th...more

  • Sarah Cooper Is Tired of Being Donald Trump

    Nov 02 2020

    As the most powerful man in the country peddled hydroxychloroquine and disinfectant snake oil as cures for the coronavirus, the comedian Sarah Cooper scoured her kitchen cabinet for props, scouted her lockdown apartment for locations and angled her iPhone. The result: a series of lip-sync videos posted on TikTok and Twitter — and viewed by millions.The viral clips starred her facial expressions and the president’s voice.But Ms. Cooper’s voice quickly followed. She soon nabbed a headliner spot at...more

  • She’s Bursting Big Tech’s Bubble

    Oct 29 2020

    It finally looks as if Big Tech may face some breakups. Lawmakers are interrogating tech C.E.O.s on Capitol Hill while the Justice Department pursues a landmark antitrust case against Google. For decades, tech giants have avoided such scrutiny — hiding behind the idea that their products are free, beneficial, even beloved.Lina Khan says this is no excuse for a monopoly.As a 28-year-old law student, Ms. Khan published a single scholarly article that greatly shifted America’s antitrust debate. Thr...more

  • Hillary Clinton Says It’s Different This Time

    Oct 26 2020

    “We are advantaged — unfortunately — by four years of a record from Trump,” Hillary Clinton says as she predicts big wins for Democrats in 2020. The former candidate has been a lightning rod for the right, and has been called a lizard, a murderer and a human trafficker.But she believes that President Trump’s leadership — or lack thereof — has left American voters more engaged and less susceptible to disinformation. Or so she hopes.In this interview with Kara Swisher, Mrs. Clinton shares the mome...more

  • Should You Choose Your Baby’s Eye Color?

    Oct 22 2020

    CRISPR-Cas9 is the kind of scientific breakthrough that could change human evolution. Scientists call it “genetic scissors” — a tool that snips DNA with powerful and scary precision. As Dr. Jennifer Doudna, the co-developer of the gene-editing technology, explains, scientists can now edit the genomes of living organisms “like you might edit a Word document.”Dr. Doudna and her collaborator, Dr. Emmanuelle Charpentier, won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry this year. Their pioneering research could pav...more

  • The Election Isn’t Doomed … Yet

    Oct 19 2020

    In part two of Sway’s two-part election integrity series, Kara Swisher speaks to Trevor Potter, a former chairman of the Federal Election Commission and an expert on the dark money and opaque laws that define modern American democracy.From witness or notary public requirements in Rhode Island to a double-envelope mandate in Pennsylvania and a single dropbox per county in Texas, Mr. Potter and the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center are on a legal spree to fight voter suppression and voting restric...more

  • Can Big Tech Make Sure That 2020 Is Not 2016?

    Oct 15 2020

    In part one of Sway’s two-part election integrity series, Kara Swisher speaks to Alex Stamos, former Facebook chief information security officer and current director of the Stanford Internet Observatory, about what went wrong in 2016 and what Big Tech can do better in 2020.Mr. Stamos — known in Silicon Valley for his willingness to speak truth to power — rose to national prominence when he departed Facebook amid disagreement about the tech giant’s handling of Russian interference in the last pre...more

  • Planned Parenthood’s Plan for Amy Coney Barrett

    Oct 12 2020

    Roe v. Wade is under threat. As Republican senators scramble to fill Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat with a conservative justice who would tilt the court six to three, the nation’s largest abortion and reproductive rights provider has its own power playbook. In this episode of Sway, Kara Swisher speaks to Planned Parenthood’s president and C.E.O., Alexis McGill Johnson.While Ms. Johnson has little sway over the judicial appointment, she is in a powerful position to preserve women’s rights at ...more

  • Killer Mike Says He Has a Choice to Make

    Oct 08 2020

    You might know Michael Render, a.k.a. Killer Mike, from a speech he made that went viral four days after George Floyd’s death. Protests in Atlanta were escalating and so was the damage and violence. The mayor needed help turning the temperature down.“I’m mad as hell,” he said, in near tears. “I woke up wanting to see the world burn down yesterday because I’m tired of seeing Black men die.”You might also know Killer Mike as Grammy-winning rapper and one-half of the hip-hop duo Run the Jewels, who...more

  • The Man Behind America’s Race for a Vaccine

    Oct 05 2020

    Dr. Moncef Slaoui is the chief scientific adviser for Operation Warp Speed, and arguably the most powerful force in the mission to vaccinate America from the coronavirus. The scientist, a 30-year pharmaceutical industry veteran and registered Democrat, says he doesn’t “want to get into the politics” even though everything about the United States’ coronavirus response — from mask-wearing to President Trump’s illness — seems to have been politicized.Dr. Slaoui says he’s an adviser with “significan...more

  • Alexander Vindman Knew Trump Would End His Career

    Oct 01 2020

    Alexander Vindman — war hero, European affairs expert, lieutenant colonel in the Army — had lofty dreams of serving the United States. But a call he heard between President Trump and Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, gave him pause. Little more than a year after taking a job at the White House, Colonel Vindman testified before Congress regarding the Ukraine scandal, and was a key witness in the impeachment inquiry into Mr. Trump.Now retired, citing bullying by the White House, Colonel Vin...more

  • Elon Musk: ‘A.I. Doesn’t Need to Hate Us to Destroy Us’

    Sep 28 2020

    Elon Musk has a vision of the future, and — as one of the world’s richest men with four corporations under his reign — the means to try to manifest it. In a conversation with Kara Swisher, he outlines his theory of, well, everything.“I do not think this is actually the end of the world,” say Musk. But at the same time, we need to hurry up. “The longer we take to transition to sustainable energy, the greater the risk we take.” But is relocating to Mars really necessary? Is our species ready to li...more

  • Gavin Newsom: ‘We Decided to Pull the Band-Aid Off’

    Sep 24 2020

    On this episode of “Sway,” Kara Swisher speaks to Gavin Newsom, a governor who is, by some measures, running a country. California is the world’s fifth-largest economy. And yesterday, the state joined the ranks of Britain, Denmark and Germany with an ambitious environmental order banning the sale of new gasoline-powered cars by 2035.Governor Newsom is making big moves, even in the midst of a pandemic and a wildfire crisis. He’s leading California as the state takes on the federal government — “W...more

  • Nancy Pelosi: ‘If The Election Were Held Today, We Would Win It All’

    Sep 21 2020

    In the inaugural episode of Kara Swisher’s new podcast, “Sway,” she interviews House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. When it comes to presidential succession, Ms. Pelosi is second in line. And when it comes to taking on President Trump, she’s usually first.“The power of the speaker is awesome,” says Ms. Pelosi. But how is she actually using that power? Why not accept a compromise (to the tune of $1.5 trillion) that may help quell a national crisis? What progress is possible when the speaker hasn’t spoken ...more

  • Coming Soon: Sway

    Sep 09 2020

    Power, unpacked. “Sway” is a new interview show hosted by Kara Swisher, “Silicon Valley’s most feared and well liked journalist.” Now taking on Washington, Hollywood and the world, Kara investigates power: who has it, who’s been denied it, and who dares to defy it. Every Monday and Thursday, from New York Times Opinion. Premiering September 21.You can find transcripts (posted midday) and more information for all episodes at nytimes.com/sway, and you can find Kara on Twitter @karaswisher.