Matt Cooke of Google News Labs still buys his local newspaper - Freelance Pod 31

Hi all,

It’s too hot outside, politics is the worst and yeah… if now’s not the time to queue up 239 podcast episodes on your phone, when is?

For something soothing, try this podcast that’s just birdsong (found via Podnews).

On Freelance Pod this week, I speak to Matt Cooke, Head of Training and Partnerships at Google News Labs, and once a presenter for 60 Second News on BBC Three, among other roles for the broadcaster.

After a training session on data and digital journalism at Google’s central London headquarters last month, Matt and I found a balcony to record on, and we talked about all things journalism, digital and in between.

My favourite bit of the episode is finding out that Matt still buys his local newspaper, the Ham & High, even though he trains journalists all over the world how to use Google’s tools for digital storytelling. That’s where we’re at right now in journalism’s shift from analogue to digital; imagine explaining it to someone in 30 years’ time.

You can find Freelance Pod everywhere, here are a few links to help you out:


Things I’ve been doing

Click through the above picture to Insta for a snippet of Episode 30, featuring Abdulwahab Tahhan, being played in front of an audience at EastCast Away in Dalston last week. It was completely magical to sit in a tiny enchanted garden in east London and see people close their eyes and really *listen* to your work. Ahhhh.

If you’re making audio and would like to try it out on a real live audience, I highly recommend following them and submitting your work.

Other than that, I’m waiting for some things to get published, especially a piece on grief dreams in print. Pitching a bit. It’s just too hot to freelance.


Things I’ve been enjoying


Coming up on the podcast

Next week, it’s Jackie Annesley, who’s had a long and exciting career in journalism. Among many other things, she’s edited the Sunday Times Style magazine; in her time there, she commissioned the PanDolly podcast, which has now become, yes, The High Low. Jackie’s now pivoted to tech, as Creative Director at start-up Soda Says, and she presents Talk Tech to Me, with a variety of starry guests.

Good luck to everyone just trying to get through this week. Until the next one… x