H.I. No. 29: Courses for Horses

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"Courses for Horses"
Hello Internet episode
Episode 29 on the podcast YouTube channel
Episode no.29
Presented by
Original release dateJanuary 19, 2015 (2015-January-19)
Running time02:15:28
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"H.I. #29: Courses for Horses" is the 29th episode of Hello Internet, released on January 19, 2015.[1]

Official Description[edit | edit source]

Grey and Brady discuss feedback on text messages, do not disturb, kiss inflation, Grey's new keyboard, Brady's defense of following the news, Grey abolishes all of human history followed by a discussion on the podcast phenomenon: Serial.

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Show Notes[edit | edit source]

Discuss this episode

Text message at any time tally

Derek of Veritasium

Horses for Courses

Martyn Poliakoff

Destin of Smarter Every Day

Discussion on when to text people

Mitchell and Webb: Text Kisses

Mitchell and Webb: Numberwang


Keyboard Technology

Grey's Keyboard

WASD Keyboards

Serial Podcast

Fan Art
Can I also just say before you make your follow up point? Yes. During the editing, I asked you to make a couple of changes because of a few things. And I thought that it was going to result in the section making no sense whatsoever to people. And you obviously handled it very well because people seemed to understand what we were talking about. So congratulations to you on editing and sorry for making your life difficult. Yeah, but nobody noticed. There's no reason for you to draw attention to this now. So I'm just going to cut this out as well. Well, let's find out. You're not Googling if 29 is a prime number. I would never do that. I would never do that. It must be prime. I can't think of any defences. I can't think of any defences. I can't think of any defences. I physician. I have prime numbers. 23, 5, 7, 11, 13, 17, 19, 23, 29. And what's our next prime episode after this? 31? 31. Wow. Twin primes. Twin primes. Yes. Although it will be a twin prime if we make it to the fourth season because this is the problem. I can never, my brain doesn't treat the seasons right because if I'm not mistaken, this is our season finale for episode three or season three. Is it not? No, no, I think wouldn't 30 would be the finale. This is the penultimate episode. Yeah. Okay. This is right. My brain always does this wrong. I feel like I want to reorder things so that like go back and retconn it so that our first episode is episode zero because I feel like the first number should tell you what season it is as well. So episode 30 should be episode one of season three, but that's not really how it works. But maybe I will go back. I'll change all the numbers. People will love that. Are you one of these people who got their nickers in a twist about the turn of the millennium then about, you know, when was the millennium really ending? Was it the end of 2000 or was it the end of? I didn't get my nickers in a twist, but I was aware that it did. Did you get your underpants entangled? It did not bother me, but it was something that I was aware of. It depended on how you want to count. Where is the millennium and where is not the millennium? But yes, maybe I will go back and I will change all the numbers for all of the episodes to make it more the way that I wanted to be. So episode one is actually episode zero. No, don't do that. I don't know, I might. Not only will it cause consternation for some of the followers, it will cause consternation for me. You'll forget it in a little while. You'll forget. We should start with follow up because that's where we always start. Well, that's where we always plan to start. We hardly ever do, but no, we don't. Let's get to what reasonably is saying. First of all, can we start with the do not disturb stuff? Yes. We talked quite a bit about do not disturb mode on phones and the times that it's inappropriate to send SMS or text messages. That a lot of people were very interested in this. Yeah, more than expected. This was a big topic on the Reddit. I think it's pretty obvious from the feedback that the majority of people shared the view that I guess was kind of your view, although you were wrestling with it a bit, but most people shared the view that it's open season and you can send messages whenever you like and you can work on the assumption that the receiver is managing the situation at their end so that if they don't want to be disturbed, they will not be disturbed. That was the majority feeling, wasn't it? Yeah. Looking through the feedback, that was the impression that I got. Just today, I asked on Twitter if someone wanted to tally it up and one of our very nice Twitter followers, James did just that and made a little picture where he went through and tallyed what side various people were on and did confirm that. Yes, it wasn't just confirmation bias on my part of, oh, look at all these comments that agree with me and I'm just going to ignore the ones that don't. Yeah, it looks like it was about three or maybe four to one in favor of you can message any time versus you should try to estimate if the other person is awake before you message them. How do you feel about that, Brady? Well, at first, when I first started saying the feedback coming in, I started to think, you know what, I'm probably just to be out of touch here. The world has moved on. Get over yourself, Brady. There are certainly people who I would send text to at any time. Nothing illustrates the example better than the fact I discussed this over Skype with Dirk from Verisdablium and we had that discussion at 2am and that was just a normal time for us to be talking. That did demonstrate that the world has moved on. But do you know what? It's suddenly disdorned on me. I'm right. There is still etiquette and it's horses for courses. You need to take into account who it is. Wait, what? Horses for what? Horses for courses. I don't know this phrase. You don't know that's no. I know. This means nothing to me. Well, it means, well, I don't know. I'm imagining it's origin, although now a thousand people will tell me I'm wrong. Some horses are good at running on wet courses and some horses always win on dry courses. So there's a saying that certain horses are suited to certain circumstances. And it's likewise with sending messages. It's horses for courses. You need to think about the horse. Well, actually, no. There should be courses for horses. Horses for courses. Now it's horses for courses because you can't change the course. But you can change the horse that runs on it. So if you turn up to the course and it's wet, you think, oh, well, I'm not going to run far lab. I'm going to run red rum because red rum is better on the wet course. Oh, people have multiple horses. I didn't realize this. I didn't realize you showed up with many horses and decided which one to run. I'm thinking you have one horse and you pick which course you want to run him on. Is that not how I don't know how professional horse racing works? Anyway, this is not really relevant to the point of time. Before we get to caught up with the intricacies of the horse racing industry. Let's just say my attitude is you need to think about the person to pick an example. Professor Poliokov is someone I text a lot. I don't text many people. So that's why I chose him. Sorry, Sam Arton, I should say. Yeah. Is someone I text a lot. He's, you know, I don't know how old he is. He's somewhere between 65 and 70. He's not, I wouldn't describe him as a super high tech dude. He's entrusted me with his phone number and the privilege to be able to ring him and text him whenever I like. I would not text him late at night. I would not expect him to have configured his phone into some system whereby he can fill to me out. I would not assume he's turned his phone off. He doesn't have to turn his phone off because of all the people in the world who have his number. I think he has an expectation. He has the right to an expectation to be left alone after a certain time of night. Now okay, CTP Gray, I know as a super tech dude, hard to contact, goes into his show whenever he wants. I will text him on a whim when I think of it. You know, Destin who could be anywhere in the world. I will text him at any time because he's probably awake anyway working or something. I choose my horses carefully. And that responsibility is on me because I'm the person sending the thing out there into the world. The responsibility is mine. And I'm sorry if I'm living in the past and I'm being old fashioned. But I still believe in, I still am old fashioned in that way. There's an etiquette here and I think if I'm going to interrupt someone, I need to think about am I interrupting them. You know, you don't just turn up at someone's house at any time. You don't phone them anytime and for me, text messages still fall into that as well. It seems like you're modifying your course for the horses in your life is the way that seems to me. I'm still stuck on this freezing and it's yeah, I can tell it's a problem for me. Let's say courses for horses if it makes it easier for you, but I can assure you the saying is horses for courses. And yes, most people in the racing industry do have a whole stable of horses. They will have 20 or 30 and they do choose where to run them based on how good they are at certain things. In this metaphor though, the horses are your friends. Or are the courses your friends? It doesn't seem like the courses should be your friends. You understand the argument, hopefully. Obviously I'm making the horses people because horses are more people like. Right. Right. And you are modifying your course for the particular course. I am modifying my course of action depending on the horse who I am sending my SMS to. It's the course for the horse. Whatever. I'm terribly sorry to be frustrating it with this. Tell me where you stand after all this. Because you were not totally decided on this. You were kind of a bit anguished. I was a man in flux in the last episode. I was genuinely anguished. I was thinking about it for a whole bunch after that show and I was I read throughout just all of the comments on the red. I was really interested to see what people have to say. And after this whole this whole debacle, I'm coming down pretty firmly on the side of no, you can message anybody at any time that instant message as you were discussing last time instant message can be treated much more much more sort of like its email than it's like a phone call, which I was arguing in the opposite way on the previous show. But I know what you meant by that. So I'm coming down on that side pretty clearly. You are wrong. And you know what? I think you know you're wrong. But I don't think I know that I'm wrong. Let me give you an example. Okay. Say you decided the next CTP grave video was going to be about chemistry and it was something and I said, I Martin helped you out with that. And you called him up and he said, oh sure, Gray, here's my phone number text me anytime you want. Okay. So I'm calling a late night session and suddenly a question popped into your head. And you're like, oh, I need to text you to Martin because I want to know the answer. Do you send the text message straight away as soon as it comes into your head at 1am? Or do you think, do you know what? That 67 year old professor. Maybe I shouldn't send him a text message at 1am. I'll tell you what, I'll send it in the morning at a more respectable hour. Which just tell me what you do and then I'll shut up. I think it partly depends on the horse. It depends on, do I know if he has an iPhone? It would depend on the horse, I guess. He does have an iPhone. I can tell you that. He does have an iPhone. That would make me more likely to be able to do it. Here's the thing. I do kind of agree with you in that. That's so good. If somebody is possibly approaching 70, I might modify my technological interaction with them. I'm going to concede that point ever so slightly here. Okay. One of the things that I thought was probably the most interesting comment from the Reddit that I found, hi, that never even occurred to me. How people don't change the default settings on their devices. Nobody flips the switches, they just leave everything as it is. What that means is that anybody who has an iPhone, if they don't at least learn about do not disturb or how to turn off their phone at night, they must be getting messages from all kinds of things all the time, just 24 hours a day. Like what? Well, if they have Facebook on their phone, Facebook will give them a notification that somebody sent them a Facebook message. I don't get that. Really? Do you have Facebook on your phone? Yes. I was using Facebook because I just assumed that's what everybody has. But if you put the Twitter app on your phone, which I have, it'll buy default. Do you have the actual one from Twitter? Yes. Okay. It notifies you for like everything that happens on Twitter. Mine doesn't. Okay. Well, here's the thing. Did you let it send you messages? Like when that thing pops up and says, like, oh, you want to send messages? No, I probably would have said no to that. Okay. Well, this is what I'm saying. Like, I think by default, people just hit the yes button on all those things. So if people just go with the default, which is yes, their phone is going to be beeping all the time. It doesn't seem to me like messages are fundamentally different on that. And I have to say, I have seen on other people's iPhones in real life a disturbing number of things in their little notification tray or the number of times that sort of normal people's phones do beep. And so I thought, huh, that does make messages more like they are part of this noise in people's life and less like a phone call. Like I would never, I wouldn't call anybody unless it was an emergency really. And I would try not to, I would really, really think about when somebody is awake before I would call them in a way that I'm less likely to come to. Consider that for messages at this stage. Well, I'm not conceding that yet. Well, here's the thing, the other thing that I just thought was interesting from the Reddit, at least our feedback on the Reddit was, you know, I would bet that Reddit trends toward a much younger audience. Yeah. Probably on average, much younger than us. I thought I was interesting just to see that there was the overwhelming, oh yes, you can message any time. And I think this is going to be it or this is slowly becoming a kind of cultural shift. I would bet that that trends really high with the younger the person is the more they think it's appropriate to message anybody at any time. So I guess what I'm trying to say here is messaging at all hours is the way of the future Brady. And so hop on board the future train. I'm out of school, Matt. I know your old. I'm an old gent, you know, I'm an I'm. Oh, not just old now, you're an old gentleman. I'm an old gent. I've got my manners, you know, I still, I still use a knife and fork correctly. And, you know, the young people might think they can do whatever they want, and eat with their hands, but, you know, yeah, because they're animals, right? These young people, they're animals. They eat with their hands and they text to all hours. I'm a proper guy. I eat at the table with a knife and fork and send my text messages at appropriate times. Yes. Yes, I do understand that. But one final thing though, it's just a point just to sit on this little topic here, which was I think the reason the reason this is such a such a contentious issue is that all other methods of communication can pretty clearly fall into one of two bins. You have asynchronous communication, like email, where both people don't need to be there at the same time and the messages go back and forth or like the post. Yeah. And then you have synchronous communications where you both need to be there at the same time, like the phone call or like right now what we're doing on Skype. We can't asynchronously put together this podcast in any reasonable way. We should try that one day. It's like an experiment. We should not. We should not try that one day. That does not sound like fun unless you want to edit that episode. And I'll let you have that joy. Yeah, you brought. But obviously, these SMSes there in the gray zone. The word for them is that they are semi synchronous. They are not synchronous. They're not asynchronous. They're semi synchronous. They can fall in and out of this all the time. And I think that is really the thing that causes all of the problems. And one of the clearest things about this sometimes is like the, with some people on InstaMessage, you sort of drift apart from having a live conversation where it's like, oh, we're talking to each other right now, but then the messages, they take longer and longer between them and you sort of wonder at what point like, are we still talking to each other or are we not? Do you know that feeling? You know what I'm saying? Yeah, you're the master of that. You're the master. You're stopping. I got text conversation. It's like, oh, I guess that was the end. Well, am I supposed to, since you're the old gentleman of etiquette here, am I supposed to sign off with the Cheerio Pip to let you know that we're all done or how is this supposed to be? Yeah, I don't know. You are more abrupt in your, like, sometimes you reply to things in a way that I used to think was rude. And now I just realize it's just me. Is that what you're saying? You're not angry. It's just like, yeah, sometimes it's something that you would think was rude. I don't know. Just like really, this is the problem. This is the problem of communication and you've talked about it before with email and text. At what point do you move from letters where everything has to be formal and yours sincerely and thank you very much for your time and at what point can you just be completely functional and say yes or no, you know? And I'm not quiet at your level yet of using these things purely functional. But I never meant to be rude unless there was some time I was trying to be rude to you, but I don't remember in particular. I know you're not rude. I don't take it. I've learned. I've learned. This is the way of gray. What have you learned that's not rude? Just that my messages are short. Is that what you mean? A abrupt. A abrupt. So abrupt sounds so much more angry than short. But also the funny thing is when you do get cornered into a situation where you have to show some kind of emotional empathy, sometimes you are a bit cat-candy and how you handle that. What do you mean? I don't know. It's just sometimes like, I don't know. I don't want to get too personal because the next item I'm going to be really getting stuck into you so I don't want to get stuck into you. Should I just bring up what the next item is then not that I have written here on this list? Alright then let's get to the next item. This episode of Hello Internet is brought to you by Squarespace. Speaking your own website can be a huge pain. Even if you know how to code even if you're a designer trying to make something that looks good and works good is a huge, huge hassle. It's going to take up an enormous amount of your time. And if you're making a website you probably want that website to do something. You just want it done. You want this solution fixed for you. And that is what Squarespace is for. With Squarespace you can have a beautiful and functional website up in just minutes. Making of making things look beautiful, Squarespace has partnered with Getty Images. So they have tons of stock photos that you can use to put your website together. So you don't have to go out and take up a bunch of pictures for whatever it is you're trying to talk about. You just need some image at the top of your article. Bam! Squarespace has it solved for you with Getty Images. Again, Squarespace is just the best. 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Now, you can just really start making a website right now. So just go and try it out. Go and try it out. You'll see. It's awesome. So when you decide that you actually want to use Squarespace, which you obviously will, we can get you 10% off your first purchase if you use the promo code Hello. So using Hello when you sign up for Squarespace will give you 10% off your purchase and it will show Squarespace that you're coming from our show which lets them sponsor the show which works out for everybody. It's win-win. So once again, that's squarespace.com to build an amazing website. Hello is the promo code to get 10% off and we thank Squarespace for their support of our show Squarespace. Start here. Go anywhere. So at the end of the last show, we had a little bit of a discussion about Kiss Inflation. And now some people end text messages with X's. Some people such as yourself are a big fan of the hug and so they do with the XO, XO, Kisses and Hugs as well. I just do one XO. I don't do XO. Well, I just do XO. This is the fundamental point though is that the number of X's and O's increases as a function of time and then eventually you end up looking like you're being a bit distant if you just sign with an X and O because XO, XO has become the new standard over time. So this is Kiss Inflation on text messages and things. And during that conversation, you were asking me about this and I just had no familiarity with this whatsoever and I was baffled by this world that you live in. So a couple of days later, my wife listens to the podcast. And it comes back to me with a piece of feedback, which is that she does sign her messages to me very frequently with X's and O's. And I said to her, no, you don't. I've never seen X's and O's. And then of course, I ended up having to look at this on my phone and sure enough, lots of her messages to me and with X and O. And I swear it's like my brain just never saw this. I never registered it at all, which is why in our conversation together, I could simply say something like, no, my wife doesn't do this. I don't have any idea what you're talking about. Even though I've seen it probably hundreds of times in our married life together. So I just thought I would say that that's, I guess I don't know what I was, I should have been much more familiar with that than I apparently was. So I apologize for being just so not helpful at all in that conversation. That's funny because when I asked you about it and said to your wife, sign off with kisses, you did this weird pause that made me think that you were like not wanting to admit to it. And then you said, because you did this pause and then you just went, no, and just missed it out of hand. So I thought, oh, okay. I think I was thinking about it and thinking and coming to the conclusion that the answer was no. I'm just looking now on my message here. So if I scroll about 10 messages back, my wife has a message where it that ends in exo exo for me. So there we go. Anyway, I am less aware of instant message etiquette, I guess, is the bottom line of this whole conversation. So I'm still not going to sign it with exos, exos for you though. I'm looking how far back I have to get to find ex on the mind from my wife. Oh, just one ex, huh? It's no good. 14 messages back, but it is a double ex. Did you see the Mitchell and Web video that somebody left in the Reddit comments? No, I didn't know. You didn't see it? Okay. I will put it in the show notes. It was Mitchell and Web having a little conversation about kisses and hugs on text messages. And I thought it was great as many of their little comedy clips are. So I'll put that in the show notes for people to watch. I quite enjoyed it. Yeah. As the guy who makes number for I'll, I cannot tell you how many times I've been sent the YouTube video of their number wing skit, but it would be in the hundreds. I don't know the number wings. Well, make a channel called number file and you get very familiar with it. Okay. Number wing. I'll send it to you. You can put that in the show notes too if you want. Gosh, I can send that a lot. They have a lot of good ones. They do. They're very good. You said something on Twitter about keyboards and all your nerdy fans got very excited in there. Like tell us more about your keyboard, Gray. That's a different nerd voice now. Is this my the fan? That's the head, nerd voice. What's normal, nerd voice? Hello. I have a new keyboard. I think you've forgotten how you do your own nerd voice. I don't know. I'm just saying. Maybe it's different sounds. I don't know. Maybe. No, you've lost the skill. You think it doesn't sound nerdy anymore? I don't think it sounds as nerdy as it used to. Tell us about your keyboard. I did get a new keyboard. This is the kind of thing people want to know. Yeah. I don't know if you can hear it. I'm typing it out. Yeah, of course I can hear it. Do you know my position on hearing keyboards on audio recordings? I believe you were in favor of hearing the keyboard on the audio recording. Is that right? Was that not right? No. It was more mouse clicks, but no. I don't like clicking in my audio recordings. It shows a lack of respect to the audience. I think probably when I'm typing it, it's more of a lack of respect to you. Yes. Yes. Well, at the moment, I am your audience because we're just recording. There's no one else listening. I think so. But no, through this podcast, if you hear clicking, it'll be much louder because when we recorded it in the past and I had my old keyboard, sometimes when you were talking, I would try to type quietly so that it wouldn't come up on the microphone and look stuff up. But I did get myself a new mechanical keyboard, which I only just recently discovered are things that are still being manufactured. So back in the good old days of computers, you know, like in the 1980s and 1990s, you had these keyboards with really satisfying clicks because they had physical switches inside of them. They're called type riders, aren't they? No, they're not called. That's right. Type riders are often terrible. I was using a type rider today, would you believe? Really? What for? I was actually doing it for Hello Internet. Really? Yeah. Oh, I bet I know what you were doing. Yeah. I know what you were doing. Yeah, you know what I was doing. I know what you were doing. Okay. But yeah, so old keyboards used to have satisfying clicks and it was because there were physical switches on the inside. And then over time, manufacturers switched to what are called, I think they're called rubber dome caps inside keyboards, which are much softer and they have a kind of moushier feel when you type on them. And it has always made me sad. But it never occurred to me that maybe somebody out there is still manufacturing mechanical keyboards. I don't know why I popped into my head one day, but I went to look it up and was super excited to discover that yes, mechanical keyboards are still being manufactured. And so as a kind of nice purchase for myself, I decided that I had to buy one and there is one sitting in front of me right now, which is very nice. And I have to say there is nothing more satisfying than typing on a mechanical keyboard. Is it good looking as well? It is, as well. So I think hard like that. Well, the company who should sponsor us, by the way, well, I actually don't know how to pronounce the name. It's either WA SD or WASD. I don't know if I'm supposed to say it as a word or if I'm supposed to say the letters. But they kind of personalize the keyboards. So you can get them printed however you want with any letters and then you can get the colors of the keys anyway that you want. Wow. And you can get any size keyboard anyway that you want. Because one of my big complaints about keyboards is that when you buy a keyboard for your desktop, there's too much of the junk on the right hand side, like a full number pad. I never want that. And then you have to reach over it to get to the mouse. So I got a little short keyboard. I got it all in black and what is very exciting for me is I got it printed with the Devorak keyboard layout. Nice. But the biggest disadvantage is that when we are recording a podcast, I can't be subtle anymore. Like here's me trying to type quietly. That's okay. I mean, at least it's still here. I think it's better to go loud. Like if you're going to be a bear, be a grizzly. Don't like, yeah. So I think that's the way to go. I quite like, look at this. So I could get one of these printed with my average shortcut keys on it and stuff. And yeah, you can upload anything that they think there's a way that you can tell them whatever you want to put on the keys. And they have presets for a whole bunch of different stuff. So I got the Mac Devorak preset and just, I just got it in all black. And it's really nice. But it is heavy. Like you could be demand to death with the mechanical keyboard. They are not, they're not made for your backpack or to carry around. Does it have to be wired into the computer or can it be wireless? I think they need to be wired. But I'm not 100% sure on that. But yeah, the thing is, the biggest advantage now is of course, because I spend, probably the majority of my time actually typing on my iPad is that I can't use this delightful keyboard with my iPad. Because if I brought it to Starbucks, people would be really angry even if I had an adapter that went into my iPad of trying to like type, clack at a clack, clack in the corner. That wouldn't be anything. So this is purely not the Devorak thing, but the mechanical thing. This is purely just kind of a, like a pleasure, a pleasure thing. There's no kind of advantage to you functionally. This is just a, a niceness. It just sounds and feels nice. This just makes the experience more pleasurable. Yeah, it makes typing way nicer to do. And I don't know if it's just because these are the kind of keyboards that I grew up with. That might just be a big part of it. But I feel, and I've been working with it for maybe about a week now. And I'm really aware that I can, once I get into the flow of typing, like when I've been working on scripts and things, I swear it feels like I'm going to be a little bit easier to keep going into type quickly on a mechanical keyboard. That might just totally be in my head. I'm fully willing to acknowledge that. But it just feels like a really solid, nice piece of equipment. Yeah. And so I'm really liking it. Well, if you're into anything you can do to increase the enjoyment of your work, it helps you work for longer, doesn't it? That's exactly it. When I got the keyboard, I was genuinely excited to be able to go through my email. I had this huge pile of emails. Oh, boy! Now I can start trying and typing this out. So honestly, even just for a day of being able to turn through my endless pilot email, it was definitely beneficial. This episode of Hello Internet has been sponsored by our very good friends at Harry's. Now you've heard me talk about Harry's before. They sell brilliant shaving kits. Everything you need, the handle, the razors and whatnot. The usual talking points you've heard us say, then blades are made in Germany. Really good price. Get them delivered to your door and set it going to the shops. But today I want to do something different. I want to read you an email I received. Just a couple of days ago from a gentleman named Trevor who is a freshman at the University of Wisconsin. Actually, it's the University of Wisconsin. Oh, gosh. Is that right? I don't know. Anyway, that's where he's from. I sounded really American. Then didn't I say freshman at the University of Wisconsin? I quite liked that. I have to say, I mean, I make educational videos and I get quite a lot of emails from people saying, thank you for making this video and you've inspired me to learn something. And I guess that's something I expect now, but I never expected I would get to a point when I started receiving emails like this from Trevor, basically thanking me for shaving advice. Trevor says, Harry's Razors are fantastic. For Christmas, I received a Winston set and I love it. Blah blah blah. As a university student with an aging razor, Harry's provides a high quality razor for a great price. Although I've not yet used the shaving foam, I can say the gel is even higher quality. And furthermore, I will from now on be buying my shaving products from Harry's. Thanks for your opinion on their razors because Brady's soothing actually says Brady's smoothing words really pushed me to ask for one. Thanks and have a happy new year sincerely, Trevor. And just so you know, I'm not taking advantage of Trevor, he does say, PS, you can use this email as a review for the ad if you guys make another one. So there you go. Don't take it from me. Don't take it from Gray. Take it from Trevor. A freshman at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. That can't be right. Can I Oshkosh? Anyway, thank you so much, Trevor. And thank you, Harry's, for supporting our podcast. Clearly it's not just us saying what we think about the products, the people out there using them are really enjoying them as well. It's really hard to show you how cool the Harry's stuff is. You have to look at their website. It's Harry's.com. I also recommend the Winston, it's sort of the silvery metal blade. It's really nice. And once you start using it, I'm sure you'll never go back. Go to Harry's.com. You can get a starter set from as little as $15. But best of all, you can use the offer code, H-I, for Hello Internet. That's H-I when you check out and you'll get $5 off. So you're saving money, you're getting great razors, and you're also doing a favor for us here at Hello Internet. Thank you very much, Harry's. Now, there's something we spoke, we've spoken about this many times. And we spoke about it again in the last episode. And for some reason, for the last couple of weeks, it's really been stuck in my head, more than ever before. And this is your avoidance of news. Oh, okay. The fact you don't go on news websites, you don't watch the nightly news. Would it be fair to say, I don't know if you can actively avoid the news? Well, I think you're framing this all wrong because I'm just living my life. You, on the other hand, go and seek out the news. Okay. I'm not avoiding anything. Okay. Okay. So this, for some reason, this has been bothering me a lot over the last couple of weeks. It was funny because on the last podcast, I was surprised how much of a thing this was because I felt like we've discussed this many times. Yeah. But it seemed like you didn't truly understand until the last episode. No, I don't know. I think I always understood, but I think it is, I think it is a wrong headed of you. Okay. Now, can I put, can I just do a couple of little caveats here at the start? Please, please go ahead. Okay. Caveat away. Caveat away. First of all, it's everyone's right how they live their life, including yours. Right. And who am I to judge, etc, etc. But first of all, I think since we do a podcast together, it's kind of your job to judge my life. I think that like in this circumstances, too. Okay. Can I also just say from the start before I start trying to sound too grandiose, that I am very aware that you and I and everyone listening to this podcast is just a sack of water on a specky piece of rock around a star in a universe and we could not be more insignificant. I am aware of that, but I'm going to put that to one side because if we don't put that to one side, we might as well kill ourselves right now. Well, I mean, I don't agree with anything that you've just said there, but okay, I'll just, I'll let you keep going here. All right. I think you should be following the news and the things that happen in the world more closely in it should be part of your life. Okay. There are two, there are two main reasons. The first reason and it's the lesser reason is I think you almost have a, I don't want to say professional responsibility because you know, I would never suggest you're unprofessional when you're very good at your work, but I think it's almost incumbent on you and the job you do to know quite a bit about what's going on in the world at all times. You have a very large following of people on various mediums, you know, you know, whether it's social media and obviously your YouTube channel, you touch a lot of people's lives in a lot of different places around the world and to be, to have no idea what's going on in the world, I'm exaggerating here, of course, when I say you have no idea what's going on in the world. I'll then excuse my exaggeration. Yeah, but to a first order approximation, of course, enough. To have no idea what's going on in the world, I think is irresponsible. I'm using words like unprofessional and irresponsible, but I'm using them in a very friendly way. I'm not, I'm not funny. Yeah. I think it's, it's almost irresponsible to not know what's going on in the world because you communicate with these people and you talk with them. Admittedly you're not talking with them about day-to-day news that much, but I just think you should know. I think you should know stuff. You should be really across stuff. So partly so you don't step on landmines, but also it just will allow you to have a kind of a sensitivity and a context for things you say that matches the context of everyone else living in the world because I think most people in the world do follow the news and sort of know what's going on day-to-day. Yeah, I think you're totally right. All right. Now. Well, I think you're right about most people follow the news. Yeah. There's a bracket that very tightly. Okay. Yeah. I don't know if you want to respond to that. It's not my main point anyway, but you should probably, maybe you should respond, you know, am I, you know, what I don't know. Well, I guess I've had this conversation with very many people that comes down to some kind of version of even even my work aside that it's like the responsibility of people to follow the news. Yeah. And I do not understand that that argument at all. I'm not, I've never had anybody make a convincing reason for why it's a responsibility to like and what I mean here is on a on a daily basis like the thing you were talking about last time of just go to CNN.com and see what the headlines are or whatever. I don't see the responsibility. I don't see the compelling reason to do that. And I have both lived a life where I did intensely, I would say much more regularly follow the news. So when I was, when I was working as a teacher, I used to have a relatively long commute for part of my career. And as a regular thing, I had a bunch of podcasts I listened to that were sort of just news podcasts, you know, what's what's going on. And I was much more plugged into things happening in the world. And over time, I kept turning that dial down and down and down about how much stuff I let in. And from my perspective, my life seems much better now that I don't follow the news. It's not necessarily cause and causation though. This is, you know, your life could be better now for other reasons. My life is better for for very many reasons. Like I have been working to make my life better. And I have accomplished that in a bunch of ways, which I'm pretty happy about. But I can say that there are ways in which I could feel that the news was burning cycles in my brain that didn't need to be burned. That or like I was thinking about stuff where I thought, well, why am I thinking about this or like why, why, why am I upset about this topic or why is my brain kind of focusing on this thing? There's no to no avail. There's nothing I can do to fix this situation or anything. So there's a particular way in which I mean that my life is better. I feel like my... Something called empathy, but maybe we'll come to that in a minute. But you don't know what topics I'm talking about. Like I can get hugely obsessed with how the voting systems work. And particularly that's not necessarily empathy with human beings. I still think it's a kind of empathy, but anyway, that's a destruction. Yeah. But so here's the thing. When we're weighing this, it's like I can point to measurable ways in which my life is better, personally better, from not following the news. And then people come along and tell me that I have some sort of responsibility to follow the news just as an informed human being. I feel like you need a reason that's better than my life being better by not following the news. And I don't feel that anybody gives that. All right. Well, let me come to my next point then. Because... And I know you hate my analogies. I love your analogies, Brady. I just think they're often terribly wrong headed. But I'm talking about horses and courses and it's all backwards. Okay. If you are on a say, you were going to do one train journey in your life. And for the sake of one, let's say... I love trains. Yeah. Let's say London to Edinburgh, because it's one we've probably done. I've done that. It's where we live. So you're going to do this one train journey. And to me, this is who you are. You are sitting on this train. You have your head in a book and you're reading about all the great train journeys in history or you're reading a book about fictional train journeys that a bunch of hobbits once took on the train to Mordor. And you're sitting there and you're thinking about the best, your perfect train and you're reading about what some views are from different trains. And the whole time you sit there in a book and then at the end you pull up in Edinburgh and you get off the train. And at no point on that train journey, did you look out the window, did you walk around and have a look at the other carriages and see what the food carriage was like and what the toilets are like on the train and talk to the other passengers. You just spent the whole train journey reading and thinking about other train journeys. And I think this is kind of what life is like. You have this one train journey that you get to go on depending on what you believe. You have this one train journey and I know there's a lot of people in the world and 6 billion or 7 billion or 8 billion or whatever it is, seems like a lot of people. But it's not really that many people in the grand scheme of things. And these are the other people that you're sharing the train journey with. And this one little train around this one little star and then soon it will all be over. And I think it is sad to think that you would spend your whole train journey with your head buried in a book thinking about stuff that's happened before or stuff that might happen in the future or stuff that never even happened. It's just made up and not devote more time to the journey itself, to look out the window, to get offered a few stations and walk around, to think about all the other people that are doing the journey with you. Like I think you're missing out. I think that's wrong. I think in life you've got these other people that live on the planet with you and sure they're a long way away and you might never meet them. But there's a kind of community that we're on here and we're all on this planet together and I think it's good that we live in a time where we can know what all the others are doing and what's going on. And I know the media is sometimes not the best prism and it's flawed but everything's flawed. I think sitting, I think you're sitting there with your head in a book and I hope that you spend enough time looking up and realising that there are billions of other people on this train with you and stuff's happening to all of them and some of it's good and some of it's bad because this is the only journey you're going to get and you don't want to get to the end and think, I kind of just did it. On my own. I think following the news makes you part of a really special community and who knows, maybe there are millions of other communities spread all through the universe, maybe we're the only one. But this is a special thing. This is a special ride you're on and you're on it with a bunch of other special people and I think you should pay attention to what journey all those other people are on to. That's all I have to say. So I swear I'm not making a horses for courses joke here. But your analogy seems exactly backwards to me. In the same way, to me it feels like to use the train as life metaphor. I am on a train and there are people around me and there are things to look out the window and this train is my life and what you want me to do instead of looking out the window or talking to the people nearby is you want me to read the newspaper to read the newspaper about things that are happening on the other side of the planet things that I can do nothing about or things that are just totally unrelated to what's happening around me right now. And that's what you want me to do is to read the newspaper that you want me to not look out the window to not possibly interact with the people around me. That's to me what the news seems like. You've taken the analogy a step further to the point where it doesn't make sense. That's not the point I was making. I understand that's not the point you're making but that is the way it feels to me. I think this is also... I always feel kind of bad talking about the news with you Brady because you were a journalist. You are still a journalist in many ways. You're sort of an independent journalist. I can honestly say you're the best journalist I've ever known. And if all journalists were like you I would have much more interest in the news. But my experience with the news is that it is all... Even if you want to follow it so much of it is just terrible. And even trying to filter through this stuff that is just wildly inaccurate or misrepresentative or stuff that just like ginned up controversies, there's just a million things. And there is the abstract notion of the news which I think is what you are arguing for. And then there is the practicalities of, okay, well I'm going to follow the news. Which website am I going to follow in particular? When you get down into those details it all just looks particularly terrible. But if all of the newspapers in the world were written by Brady Harons that might be a very different story. But that's not the actual world that we're in. I think it's a bit of a cop out to say that the media is broken. Like, policemen are corrupt too, but it doesn't mean when you get robbed you're not going to call the policemen. And politicians are corrupt, but it doesn't mean that you want to abolish democracy. You've got to... No, I will grant that. Anarchist decide we can all agree that we need some kind of governing structure. And we need some kind of law enforcement. And yes, hospitals are imperfect, but I will go to one if I am sick. But I don't see the need for the news in my life. I don't see what this adds and I don't see what following it does. I just feel a bit like... And I know that you can change the analogy to soup too in another way. I know exactly how you will change it. But I feel like you're going to Yankee Stadium with 50,000 other people. And like this unique, amazing game is happening. And we're all together as a crowd cheering and enjoying it. And then after the game, someone comes up to you and says, what was the game like? What was the experience like? And you're like, I don't know, I just read the Hobbit. While everyone else was watching the game and experiencing the emotions of the main... Of the journey and having a hot dog and doing all that. And I feel like it's a bit like... And you know, you can go too far the other way. I'm not saying you should sit there watching a 24 hour news channel every minute of your life so that you know what every other human's doing. There's a balance to be struck. But I just suspect I feel like you're striking it way too far in the other direction to the point where you're just sitting in the corner of a library. And I don't know. I don't know what frustrates me so much. Why do I care? You know, you're still my friend and you entertain me and you make good videos. So why do I care that you don't watch the news? But for some reason it has been bothering me in the last couple of weeks. Don't worry, it's not just you. It's almost everybody I interact with everywhere I go when this comes up. Everybody's bothered by this. And I find it very interesting that this... That people are really bothered. But I have gotten through to a few people to do the experiment, try to turn down the news or just make a note of the things that are occupying your mind in the news on a particular day and then write them down and then look at that... That list three weeks from now and see how much of that stuff on that list even matters at all. That's a very good experiment and I'd love to do it. And you're dead right and I've thought a lot about the other... The point you made, that things that seem important now... Later on don't seem important. I see in my own videos actually. I sometimes see videos I made because I felt like I had to make them because they were so topical on side Geistie and I watch them now and think that wasn't that important and event really wasn't. No. But I do feel like you can go too far the other way, you know, with a few... With, you know... But I've said before that it is impossible to live in the modern world without some news getting through. And so I go on Twitter, I'm aware of the occasional really big events that occur. You know, I went to the local corner shop just earlier today and like there's newspapers on the stand as I'm waiting to check out stuff so I see the headlines. It's... When you say avoiding the news, it's not like I'm like, oh, avert my eyes from the headlines, you know. I don't want to... I don't want to soil my pure brain and worry about what's happening elsewhere. And of course I could never go on Twitter if I totally wanted to avoid everything. But so that's why I just... I think it's different that to me it's the question of is there any benefit in spending time actively seeking out the news? I don't think so. And I don't... I don't think it's stupid to have it as one item on your checklist to go to the front page, the BBC website and just check what the top three stories are. And if you look at them and think, oh, that's just a bunch of filler, typical media. But if there's one there that you think, gosh, that's... You know. But you forget, I used to follow the news more regularly. Like I've done this. I used to do this. And I've come to the conclusion that it's just... There's no point in it. There's no point in it except derailment. That's what lies that way. So... Okay. I don't mean to bring you down, Brady. You haven't brought me down. You let me have my say. You were very understanding and patient with me. I would just say that I still don't... I still don't hear the reason to follow the news from you. And this is... I would really like a reason. I would not like a metaphor. I would like to know. Why should I do this? Because I think it is good for you as a person to have a high level of empathy with the other people you share this planet with. Okay, but having empathy for other people is a totally different issue. Because I don't follow the news is not the same thing as lacking in empathy. Oh, well, it's kind of like a public... It's kind of like a very flagrant showing of disregard for what's happening elsewhere. It's also not disregard. It's... You know, what is... I always forget the wording of this thing. It's like the serenity prayer. You know, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Yes. I feel like that the wisdom to know the difference and the acceptance of things I cannot change. Like that is the news to a very large extent. The only reason that prayer doesn't apply to you, though, is that you don't know what the things are. You don't know what things you can change or can't change, because you don't know the things. You're ignoring the things. I understand that point, but I still say that that almost by definition, the stuff that is covered in the news is unusual stuff, and it's stuff that I can have almost no effect on. The stuff that is presented in the news is not about solving stuff. It's about getting your attention on these things. Let me ask you one final question. Yeah. If everyone in the world, tomorrow, deployed the CGP-Grey philosophy to news consumption, what would happen besides a whole bunch of media empires going out of business? What would happen? Would it be in the world's best interest if everyone took your level of interest in news and current events? I don't think the world would be that different, to be honest. I do. Okay. How do you think it would be different? I think the rich would get richer, the poor would get poorer, the corrupt would get corruptor. I think when tragedies happen, there would be no help from the outside. I think when injustice was happening, nothing would be done about it. You got to stop there because again, your acting is though huge events I don't hear about, or that they don't come through in my system. You are postulating the world in which everyone is actively blind to everything that is occurring everywhere in the world. There's often some pretty big things you don't know about. That is true. And to be fair, if everyone ignored the news, the news would kind of wither on the vine anyway. And there would be even less to know. But that's not a reason to sustain it, I realize. But yeah. Yeah, again, this is again where I think you are the ideal journalist, and you are a good embodiment of the story that the news likes to tell itself about. We hold power to account. Really? Do you really news? I'm not super convinced that you do. You can, there are other ways to hold power to account that are not as altruistic as you think. You know, the only way to hold power to account is not writing kind of wholesome stories about deep political issues. You know, they can't. Who can I give you another little thought experiment here? There's something I thought about a bunch. I haven't ever told anyone about this because I think you probably make people angry. But why don't I do it on a podcast? Let's see if we can make people angry. This is perfect, right? All right. So your thought experiment of what happens everybody avoids the news in the way that I do. Okay, let's, something similar that I have thought about is this. You have brought up it before that, oh, CGB gray, you don't like the news, you like things when it's all just settled, when it's just history. And you know, you want to wait until the, you know, we have things all written down, and we have like a definitive account of what has occurred, which I have argued with you many times. But I have often wondered like if I could press a button that would erase all knowledge of history from humanity, would I press that button? As in nothing, nothing changes. We don't forget the current state of the world. Right? But people just forget anything about history. You just, you know, wake up tomorrow and we just, oh, right. Obviously, I still know I'm an, like, I'm an American. I'm living in the UK. Everybody in the UK knows the UK is a country. But they just forget all of the relations that say the UK ever had with France, or with Ireland, or with India, or that Germany had with Poland, or any of these kinds of things. So you're removing the kind of the baggage and the stereotypes and the things that. Yeah, just like, I mean it quite literally, removing all knowledge of like the politics of history. Yeah, just all those books got burned and everybody forgot. I would argue that, that like, I think that could be a better world. I honestly think I would be pretty tempted to press that button and set a light all knowledge of human history. So you don't subscribe to this. You know, we learn from our mistakes and that's why history is important. Yeah, that's all. I mean, come on. If you think about that for two seconds, that's obviously a load of bull. That whole notion, right? I think that's sometimes too, actually. It's so wrong. That is the kind of thing historians like to tell everybody, oh, it's really important. We know all this history so we can learn from it. Oh, yeah. Yeah, we've done a great job of learning from that history. I'm glad we've never made the same mistake twice. That was good job historians. So I would argue that I think that that could be a better world. Do you, what do you think? Do you agree with me? Do you disagree with me on this point? I think it'd be good for you because you wouldn't bury a nose in history books and maybe you'd live with the rest of us in the now. Would you, first of all, you still keep thinking, I don't read history. I am remarkably uninterested in history. You think that I'm some sort of like history buff, but I assure you, sir, I am not. Do you watch your videos? Do you watch my videos? If you watch them, if you actually watch them, you will notice how little history there actually is in things. Right? Everybody thinks my videos are about history, but go back and look at them. They are not. Last book that could be considered a history book I read was like a couple of years ago. Anyway, aside from your terrible concern that I follow the news in detail now, would you be at all tempted to press the button to a rate, I know you wouldn't, but I'm just like, hypothetically, do you think it could be a better world if you were to erase all of knowledge of history from humanity? My instinct is not, is that it would be a bad idea. Why do you think it would be a bad idea? Because I love history and heritage. I love that we got here because of a story, and I would hate to lose that story for better or worse. I love that we are a chapter in an amazing book. And I don't want to lose the book. But you're acknowledging that the book might be causing problems. Yep. So I feel like you agree with me, but you still wouldn't press the button. I don't know. It's something that I run into here in the UK in particular, which I have found just weird is a particular kind of like people really not liking other people who are from ludicrously short distances away. I mean, I have known, you can pick almost any pair of these, but I'll just pick one in particular, which is I have known Welsh people who passionately hate English people, just all English people. And I can see why I was from my window right now. Yeah. For stuff that happened 900 years ago, right? And I have conversations with these people, and they seem like really, really dead set about it. Now, before anybody gets angry, you know, you can do this with any combination you want. I know English people who hate Scottish people. I know Scottish people who hate, like not in a joky way, but in a serious way. They're like, they bear resentment. And that to me is just beyond stupid. There's no reason for this. Everybody who was involved in this is long dead and buried in the ground. I don't understand this attachment to people from hundreds and hundreds of years ago, like it affects your life at all now. You're a dude in Wales, and it's whatever. You can just live your life the way you want to. So that's kind of why I often think that knowledge that England screwed over Wales 900 years ago, you know what? It might just be better if that wasn't around anymore. If we just erased all of history. And I feel like you are right in that the news in some senses is the leading is the vanguard of what will eventually become history. Yeah. And so to me, this just seems like an extension of, I was like, you know, you want me to follow the news, but I would press a button that would erase all of history from knowledge if I could. So in some ways, I'm willing to go much, much further on this. But what is the point of life if it isn't stories? And like, what is it just to have X number of dollars in the bank when you die? Like if you haven't got stories and stuff that happened, good stuff and bad stuff and happy times and sad times like if you haven't got that, but I mean my life is that. There was the story of my life, but I mean, how far back can you honestly trace your family? And how much would it matter if you discovered at some point that, oh, you know, you did some of the genealogy wrong and it was some other family that was your past family. Right? It doesn't matter. It doesn't make any difference. Yeah. Yeah. Right? I'll give you an example of like empathy. Right. And the kind of history of this, which is, I don't know, this might be a little bit sensitive for people. So I'll try to preface this. I don't even know how to preface this, but so I've mentioned a few times I've done some road trips across the United States. This is ended being a really serious episode. Sorry, everybody. I've ended up doing a couple road trips across the US. And they're very interesting things to do. If you ever have the ability to do it, I highly recommend it. But on one of those trips, I'm not going to say exactly where. Somewhere in America, we were driving across a very large Indian reservation. My wife was with me at the time. And I've been, I've traveled around the world like I have been to many places. I can honestly say that this was one of the most horrifically poor places I have ever seen in my life. And my wife, who is much more well-traveled than I, she was like, she's never seen poverty like this. It was just a horrible, horrible place. And to me, this is the kind of thing where it's like, look, these people are in a terrible situation that we kind of, and like, this is a particular America problem, but that America kind of allows to exist for historical reasons. I honestly think that if we woke up tomorrow, and everybody forgot everything that there ever was to know about colonialism, and what happened with America and the Native Americans, and we just woke up tomorrow and couldn't remember anything, but just looked around and said, why on earth is there this group of people in poverty that we accept nowhere else in the country? We wouldn't let that stand. And I feel like this is another example of where history is no good. It doesn't help. And what you care about is like, what is the situation of people today? Are there people who need help? Like, let's try to get them help. And I don't really care what the historical reasons are as to how they got there. I care how much help they need today. I don't know. I get a kind of off track here, but that's sort of how I feel about that. It's the stat of a good argument for a role of the media. What's going on today? Where do things need to be done today? I know it's this idealized media, not the, you know, what's key connection. Yeah, and can I ask you like, how much is the media focusing on that? None. Exactly none. No, that's, I mean, I can't speak to Indian reservations, but it's not true that there are no parts of the media that aren't highlighting places where there are serious problems in the world. We talk about the media highlighting, you know, places where there's problems in the, in the world, fine. To me, this is, this is like a fixable problem within a, in a confined region that is allowed to exist. If we didn't have historical knowledge of it, it wouldn't, it wouldn't be allowed to stay the way it is. Yeah. I don't know. I don't know. But it's never going to exist, whereas the news media can, does exist and can, can do some stuff. But I'm not, I don't want to, I'm not making the case for the news media as a force for good. I don't, I don't, that's not particularly interesting to me. Yeah. And I think it's a pretty lame argument when you say you should watch it because it's the fourth estate and it will make the world a better place. Yeah. I make the argument to you that you should follow the news and stuff that's in the media just because you're a citizen of the world. And, and I think it's good for you to know what the other citizens are up to in some way. And you make a very good case why you don't. And as I said at the very start, I respect it. But it just had been on my mind and we've certainly devoted a lot of time to it. So maybe we should move on to more important issues. I put this on in our notes a couple of weeks ago and I don't even know what to say about it. But it was just a feeling that I had multiple times. Oh. This is going to make me say I'm really stupid. Okay. But anyway, no, go for it. I want to hear what this bullet point is on the list because this is calling to me. Do you ever get this remote like I know we both joke about, you know, not having lots of patients for spending time with little kids. But this is not what this is about. This is about when you do spend time with kids, which sometimes can be very pleasurable. It depends on the kids. Yes. It's just like people. Yes. And I recently spent quite a bit of time with my nephew who I love very much and had had a really good time with. But there was one emotion that I often feel when I'm with little kids like he's like three years old or something. And that is this feeling of I wrote it as superiority, but it could also be described as kind of this sort of knowledge. You feel so like omnipotent when you're with little kids and you understand things so much better. And like we adults are like these like gods. And they're like trying to understand things in nuance that they can't possibly understand. And you occasionally you just have these waves of emotion where you're like I just know so much more than you. I can impart so much knowledge on to you and you don't understand this, but I do. And I don't know what that I don't know what that says about me that I feel that all the time. It's like I'm trying to think of a really good example, but I haven't really got one. But like like like a kid will go like near a lake or something. And you'll be like don't go near the lake and you'll stop them going near the lake. But you know so much more about why that is. You know about drowning and oxygen and swimming and all these things like all these. You have so much more knowledge than them. And they're like these like just there's these little nothings that just know nothing. And it's like a really I find a really nice feeling in a funny way. Does that make any sense? I okay, okay. I have this feeling. But in the opposite way. Right. When I'm around little kids, probably the thought that is in my head the most often is you're just so useless at everything. Right, when I look at a little kid. It's like you can't do anything. You know, we don't live in an agrarian society where I can send you out to the field and you could at least pull up the weeds and do something useful. You can't do anything useful. You don't know anything about anything and you can't do anything. And you just is huge burden on society that we tolerate because eventually you will grow up and you will be useful. But not today. But doesn't that make you feel good because you are useful? Like you're kind of like you're like one day you will be mighty like me. One day you will be able to buy food. One day you will be able to drive a car. One day you will be able to open a door. But now you can't. You know, I am the God that can do these things. You are just like and you and the other adults kind of look at each other knowingly. Like we know we know the stuff. We know how to open a door. They just I guess I don't derive feelings of superiority by surrounding myself with uselessness. It's not like a it's not like a menacing superiority. It's not like what like evil. It's just a kind of like a yeah, no, it's it's a benevolent God like superiority. That's what you that's what you're trying to say. Is that is that how you feel? Yeah, you know how at the start of this race that I'm worried that I'll come across appearing a bit silly. The point of this wasn't to say that I am a benevolent God. I am a God that just the God of children. I am a God. I am a God. I can drive a car. Yeah, you're God for me. Yeah, your God like power is a pretty pretty limited. They are extremely limited. I can only just drive a car. It's like yeah, I can't even do that well. It's like what is that? What is that old it's an old onion article that I really like? I am the worst God ever. It's good old onion. Study reveals babies are stupid. Despite their relatively large cranial capacities, babies such as the one pictured here are so unintelligent that they are unable to distinguish colorful plastic squeak toys from food sources and goes on and on about all the things babies can't do. I love the onion. They're always so good. Speak here God like power. Guess what I would show I would just wake up and is wanting to get up on my lap. Oh yeah, you must feel super superior to a dog. She doesn't even have linguistic capabilities. I don't feel it around pets. It's only other humans. It's only the children I feel it about. I don't look at the dogs and think I am almighty. Mike, it's different with dogs. But see, if anybody views you as almighty, it is surely the dogs. The dogs probably do view you as a kind of God. I doubt your nephew views you as a kind of God. He definitely doesn't, but do you think the God's view means? Do you think the dog's view? I don't know how the God's view you. I know. I probably not favorably, especially after this podcast. All right. I think the dogs definitely view you as some kind of all-powerful magic being. Stop feeding my God complex. But so I guess bottom line is I do not have this feeling around children. I mostly just feel that most children are totally useless. I do meet the occasional rare useful child. And that is I'm always impressed then. But it's most of the time it's disappointing. What's an example of a useful child? Destin's kids. I would say Destin's oldest daughter in particular. I have, but she's not a kid. She's like a chicken thing. She can feed chickens and stuff. She's like a problem person. But it takes that long for them to get to be useful. It's good when they're that old because then you can really start imparting knowledge. And that'll ask you questions and you can like... I think you think you're imparting more knowledge than you actually are. I'm not sure how much you can actually funnel into their brains that lasts at all. The last beyond the conversation that you're actually on. I don't know. I try. I try. I'm sure you do try. Trying is not the question here. And then if I feel like that's not working, I just make a joke about poo and they start laughing and kids love poo jokes. I guess they do. I haven't made many poo jokes around children. Maybe I should try that. Oh, I always work. I recommend them. Yeah. Okay. I'll keep that in mind next time I'm around a child. Today's sponsor is audible.com, a leaving provider of spoken audio information and entertainment. Listen to audiobooks whenever and wherever you want. If you're listening to this ad and you don't listen to audiobooks, I have a particular recommendation for you today. And it is a book called Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sideras. Now, anybody who listens to audiobooks has almost certainly heard this book, but if it doesn't sound familiar to you, if you've never listened to this, this is a great place to start with audiobooks if they're not something that you're into. It is a perfect example of how the audiobook can give you so much more than just the written word itself. So, Me Talk Pretty One Day is a sort of memoir by this guy, David Sideras. And he's just talking about experiences in his life and he weaves them into stories. But it is the way he tells these stories that gives them all of their charm and all of their humor. I don't really want to say very much about it. You know how I feel about spoilers if you're listening to this podcast. But if you've never listened to an audiobook, you're looking for a place to start. Me Talk Pretty One Day is probably my go-to recommendation if I don't know anything about the person. I highly recommend it. David Sideras does an amazing job with the narration. Now, lucky for you, if you are just getting started in audiobooks, you can get Me Talk Pretty One Day for free by signing up at audible.com slash hello internet that will give you one free audiobook and a 30-day trial. Once again, that's audible.com slash hello internet to get me talk pretty one day. You won't regret it. And if you want to listen to anything else, audible almost certainly has it with over 150,000 titles and virtually every genre, you'll find what you're looking for. So go check out audible.com slash hello internet. We're going to talk about this podcast code serial. Yes, we're going to talk about podcasts in our podcast, but it's somebody else's podcast. It's not our own podcast. Oh no, this is this is dangerous because then people will start listening to other podcasts and then what does that mean for us? I think that's good for us. I think people get sucked into the world of audio and you listen to a whole bunch of stuff. I think people are audio people and they listen to lots of things. So I don't think it's on the work. Okay, okay. And we're so good. I mean, obviously. Yeah, I mean, yeah, I mean, how could you? How could you not listen to two dudes talking about? I mean, basically for every new person who comes into the world of listening to podcasts, that essentially that is a new listener for us. That's how good we are. Yes, that's what serial has done really is widen our audience. Yeah, I like the sound of that. So anyway, this podcast serial has been, whatever you think of it has been a phenomenon. It's like everyone's talking about it. It's been incredibly popular. It got through the gray news bubble. It got through the bubble. So have you listened to all of it? It's 12 episodes. Have you listened to it all? Yes, so we didn't, that we mentioned it offhandedly on the last podcast, but we should have properly said it for homework. We didn't do that, but I had just finished listening to serial. I think actually the day we recorded that podcast, and I mentioned it to you. You've listened to the whole thing now, right? Is that correct? I have. I have. Should we draw a line in the podcast here, then, and say, from this moment on, everyone, massive spoiler alerts. If you haven't listened, you might want to pause our podcast now. Go listen to the 12 hours of serial, I think it is. And then come back, and then you can listen to us talk about it. Because yes, there are going to be spoilers ahead. And you know how we feel about spoilers, so we just wanted to warn you. Now, obviously, some people will not follow that advice, and we'll just listen to us talk anyway. I always refuse to believe those people exist, but they tell me they exist in the comments. They seem to exist in abundance. So for those people who aren't going to listen to it, but are about to listen to us talk about it. I guess we owe it to them to explain what this thing is. Yeah. Well, I would say, I would back up and say that I first heard about it, serial. I don't remember exactly when, but it seemed like there were, there were a few articles that were getting passed around on the internet about how there's some kind of huge podcast resurgence, which is a strange thing to write about. In the first place, like podcasts went anywhere, but what it really was is there were a few podcasts that had caught the public eye. And serial was one of them and ended up becoming just, but I think a phenomenon is fair enough to say it seemed like it was it was mentioned and covered absolutely everywhere once it started going live. I think it was mentioned first on this American life was where they started. So it has been a big thing in the podcasting world. Here's what happened. 15 years ago, a high school a guy from Baltimore was convicted and imprisoned for murdering his recently ex-girlfriend, who was also a student at the school. And he has been in jail ever since. Now, very recently, this case, this guy always protested his innocence. Recently, this case was brought to the attention of a reporter and she started investigating it. And, you know, raking over all the old recordings, raking over the old trials, interviewing all the people now 15 years later to try and get an idea of whether or not this guy was guilty or not. She also interviews the guy himself in jail, which is where he keep up. Yeah, so Edna said. Yes, so anyway, so that's the that's the setup. Now, it's done in quite an interesting way. It's done as a serial, a serialization. So it's told in quite a unique way over these 12 episodes and the story unfolds. And it's not so much the story of what happened unfolds, although that is unfolding, but also the story is unfolding of this woman's investigation. So there's kind of these two threads going on. You're kind of you're kind of unwinding the crime 15 years ago. And at the same time, you're unwinding this woman's investigation now. So it's often jumping back to things that happened in the past. And then it's things that are happening now in her investigation. And it's just done in a very compelling way. It's very well produced. It uses the mix of audio and recordings and the old and the new and sound and music very well, which I'm sure we might talk about. And it just makes for a really compelling story. And it has this this serialization nature to it that makes it quite addictive, like like chapters of a book you always just want to know the next chapter. And very drawn out, which is unusual for this kind of audio format in this way. So that's kind of in a nutshell, in a small nutshell, what's happening? Have I missed out anything really, really key in describing what it is? No, no, I think that is that is a fair way to describe it. It is a current investigation by Sarah Keneig who works for NPR. She's not a criminal investigator of anything. She is just a journalist of a murder that took place 15 years ago now. And it is it is told in yeah, 12 parts, I think 10 12 parts each about an hour long, which is why it's very personal. It's very personal to it's very much her story of her investigation. She's not sort of keeping an arm's length. She's, you know, I think she would argue she's doing her best to be impartial. But she's it is a very personal story. It's sort of her story of how she's trying to unspull things and what she's learning and what she's thinking about the case. So you listened to more recently, but so you I would it sounds overall like you liked it very much. Was that fair to say? You thought it was good? I liked it very, very, very much for numerous reasons. I'll tell you the best test for the fact that I liked it. Okay. And that is I just couldn't get enough listening to it. And I was manufacturing excuses. To listen to it like I was like, oh, I think I'll go for a big long walk this morning just so that I can put it in my ears and listen to another episode. Or I think I'll go and drive to that shopping centre that's far away because that will be in two long drives. I can listen to a whole much more podcast. It really took over my life. I think I listened to it all in about two two and a half days or so. Yeah, that is a good sign. This is a good sign. And an interesting thing which you make come back to as well. I was saying to my wife the whole time, you will love this. You have to listen to it. And she's like, yeah, I'm sure I will, but she wasn't listening to it. And then she had to go for a long drive. So I said, I'm put it on your phone, just listen to it on your drive. And now she has become completely obsessed with it. To the point where she will come home from work, having driven home from work and say, I've just got 10 minutes to go. Do you mind if I just put it on the stereo and listen to it while we have dinner? She's become completely obsessed with it as well. And then you're listening to it a second time through her. I'm listening to bits of it a second time. But I think it's really important to listen to this with as few spoilers as possible. So I'm doing a really good job of just passing, showing no emotion, I'm passing no comment as she listens to it. She asks me questions and things. And I'm just playing a straight back to it to use a cricket analogy. Oh, yes, of course, a straight back, yes. It's good. A straight back. Yeah, that's why I'm in a straight back. Yes. Yeah. That's when they straighten the wings. That's what those are first two. Wait, what? Never mind. Yeah, all right. Come on, tell me what you thought of it. What's your executive summary? I made reference on the last podcast too. I took a kind of vacation for myself from Christmas until early-ish January. It's a little strange when you work for yourself because you have to decide for yourself when a vacation is going to end. And I ended up listening to serial basically straight over the course of two days when I was just just veging out. And just like, I'm not doing anything at all today. And I had had this on my list to listen to eventually. And it crossed some threshold where I thought, oh, I'm going to give this a try. And I listened to one episode and it's like, well, I have to listen to the next episode. And I don't have to do anything today. So let me keep them and then let me listen to the next one. And the next one. So I think I listened to maybe five the first day and the rest the next day. So in a very, very condensed, very back-to-back time frame. Which is like, imagine that you liked it. And so here's the thing. Here's the thing. I would say in general, I liked serial. I liked what it was aiming for. But I have to say that by day two, I was listening to it more out of frustration and wanting to conclude this thing than out of genuine enjoyment. OK. But I thought that- I can appreciate that. Yeah. I thought that the first maybe three or four episodes were excellent. And it really drew me right in. I thought, boy, this, you know, this is a really interesting story. Like, I'm curious to see what happens to him. And whoever made the theme song for serial did an amazing job. And they used audio really well in that, where there's the automated voice from the Maryland Correctional Facility. And it's put together in a very high production kind of way. I love the music. I loved the music. But so here was my frustration with this. And you listened to it more recently. So you may be able to correct me on some of these points. But my frustration in this was, OK, we're trying to talk about what happened 15 years ago. And even in the very first episode, the very opening thing that Sarah Canig starts with is a discussion of how well could you remember a day that happened six weeks ago? And she, you know, she takes random high school kids as an example and is asking them, oh, where were you six weeks ago? I like with anybody. The answers are just so vague. And people have to just speculate. They're going, oh, was I in school six weeks ago? Or was it work or was it a hot, they can't even remember? And they're just wrong. And she starts with this premise of how difficult it is to remember where you were. Because one of the central points to this murder case is that, Syed himself basically says, like he doesn't remember a lot of the details of the day that his ex-girlfriend got murdered. Because to him, it was like, it was just another day. There wasn't anything from his perspective, because he claims his innocence. To particularly remember about what happened then. And so Sarah Canig is kind of bringing this up in the beginning as what I thought was a terribly valid point that you can't remember clearly what you did. I mean, when she started that in the show, I thought, I can't remember yesterday very well. Right? If somebody asks, what were you doing at 4 p.m. yesterday, I would have to say something like, I think I was at home in my office in front of my computer, but that's really what I'm really doing there is pulling up like a probability curve of where was I. It's a 95 percent problem, but I don't have any actual memory that it for 4 p.m. Yesterday, it was in my office. So six weeks ago might as well be 25 years ago, where were you? Certainly, the unreliability of memory is a theme of the podcast. Importantly so. Yes, but this is where my frustrations grew. So this is her starting point. In the first few episodes, she's kind of laying down some of the facts of the case and building things up. But then as time goes on, I felt that more and more of the episodes were could be summarized in some way as Sarah Caning once people to remember the particulars of a day that happened 15 years ago. And she's interviewing people and she wants to know what were you thinking at this time or what was going on at that time. And that's kind of where my frustration came in. And these are like adults. They were high school kids and now she's interviewing them as kind of grown-ups asking what they did on a particular day of the at-house school. Yeah, that's exactly it. It's like she's interviewing a 30-year-old woman about where she was when she was 16. And I guess I felt like I went back just today actually because I knew we were going to talk about it. And I went to re-listen to the opener because I thought, did I miss remember this myself, how she opened this story? And I thought, no, no, this was the case. She's really laying it thick at the beginning about how hard it is to remember stuff. But I felt like the rest of the show, particularly after maybe the first three or four episodes, it was like she completely ditched this and forgot about how hard it is to remember. And she's annoyed with Sayed for not remembering anything about that day in particular. And she's trying to trace down people and ask them about what they were doing on this day. And I kept waiting for the episode where she's a reporter. Why don't you talk to somebody about memories and how memories work? But this never came up in the podcast. And so I felt like a lot of the later episodes were exercises in futility. She was like, oh, there was one girl in particular who she was trying to track down, who she wanted to interview. And I felt like, what's the point of asking this girl what happened 15 years ago? Anything she says doesn't even matter. Nobody can remember with any sort of detail, no matter how confident they are in their memories, 15-year-old memories are just so worthless. And so that's what I kind of felt the last half of the podcast was, which was just this this futile attempt to reconstruct from people's minds the particulars of a day long lost to history. I think it is a fair criticism to say that the podcast probably did run out of steam and went a bit longer than it ideally that the content was worthy of. That said, I did think it was very good. A couple of things, you know, we've already said a few other things. I thought we're good. I've always had a problem with podcasts. Before we did even started podcasting you and I, one of my main criticisms of podcast was that there's this kind of frontier of people in their in their bedrooms like you and I doing stuff, which I think is very interesting and valid. But for radio, I always thought radio just saw podcasting as a chance to reversion the stuff they were already transmitting and get a second buy of cherry. And I was very cynical about that. And this is one of the first times I feel like I've heard a professional, professional radio people making something that almost wouldn't work on radio. Like I know this was broadcast on radio, but it's not suited to radio because you have to have listened to the one before. And the episode length's very as well, which I was really aware of, but that's very intranetty that it doesn't it doesn't fit in a particular time slot. So it was kind of these professional craft audio people finally transitioning to make something for podcasting in much the same way that you can look at YouTube and it's just like clips of TV shows. And then there are people who are making stuff that is bespoke for YouTube and could only work on YouTube. And this is this is one of the I know it's I know it happens, but this is the first time I've come across it where I've thought that's it. If radio people want to break into this kind of audio thing, this is how they do it. They did it. She did it. You know, they did everything right. And yes, it ran out of steam and there are a few criticisms of it that we can talk about. But overall, that that was the thing that impressed me most was yes, you've you've you've figured it out. You guys, this is this is what to do. Like, you know, give it some meat, give it some depth, go go in detail and and they did everything right in that respect. I think that that's a good point that I hadn't considered and just thinking through my own podcast, one of the ones which I sometimes listen to is the is the Freakonomics one. I don't know if you listen to Freakonomics or not. I've listened to it a couple of times. It never quite grabbed me. But that I don't know if it is the case or not, but that one really feels like this is made to fit some time slot on some radio program somewhere. Yeah. And then we have also just put it on the internet. And there's nothing wrong with that. But something about it really feels like almost like it's a television show that we have just put on YouTube where like, oh, why are there these fade like fade outs like on TV shows when they try to put them on the internet? It's like, oh, yes, because that's where the commercials used to go. But now it does now it's just an awkward scene transition or something. The BBC feels a lot like that to me. Like, I've always felt it's been a sausage factory where they're just chopping up all their radio shows and splattering them all over the internet as podcasts. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. This felt like this was made for me on my walk. I definitely grew frustrated with it towards the end. And I grew frustrated with Sarah Keening in particular as it stretched on. I remember there was something she was doing. I was like, what are you doing? I don't understand what point you're trying to make. It did become a bit, I don't agree with you that she should have gone and spoken to memory experts and stuff because then I think it would have all become a bit worthy and a bit. The thing I liked about it was that I was so lost in the case and the people and like I was so absorbed by the characters. And I think if she stepped out too many times and started talking to people who had nothing to do with it too many times, she did do that. But if she did too many times, it would have it would have lost me. So I don't agree that she should have done that, but I do agree it was too long and she did it started becoming a bit repetitive. A couple of things at the start before I started that I was cynical about. I was very cynical about her and it being her story and I was a bit worried that she was going to make it all about me. And she did. She did make it very much about her, the serocaine. She did make it her story. And I thought that would annoy me. And I have to say it didn't. Much to my surprise. I felt like I went on the journey with her. The other thing that I thought would happen was there would be endless periods of things I couldn't follow. Too many people like Bill called Sally at 4, 13pm and then John called George. And I wouldn't be able to hold it all in my head. It would become too bogged down by details. And that did start to happen in a couple of episodes later on. There were a whole, but what about the 315 call to so and so and I'm like, oh god, who's that again? Oh man, yeah, I have to say when was it? Yeah, that part in particular, which was the the Asia call, the 315 call to this girl, Isha McLean, I think it was. No, Asha McLean was the letter, the alibi, this was the niche. Oh, the niche. Yeah, sorry, the niche. That's what it was. It's funny how these people are like become like so because I listened to it more recently. Like these names are just burned in my head. Yeah, yeah, yeah, you're right about that. But I definitely had a case where again, somewhere around three quarters of the way in I realized I was kind of lost about like, what is the importance of this phone call? And it's especially weird when I'm listening to this all in a row. I am not good with this kind of stuff just in general of keeping people straight. And so I did get lost, but I'm aware that that's sometimes a bit of a difficulty for me is keeping track of the people. Like they're all theoretical people from the perspective of this radio program. And so it's like aside from the main ones, obviously, you kind of have Jay, the key witness at the trial and his girlfriend and a couple other friends. You know, like there's a few of these people, but then I did start getting a bit lost about three fourths of the way through. I was going to say something else or like the, I don't know if you were able to follow the cell tower thing, but I found that became bit for mess to me. I thought that that like, I don't know if that was me or if that episode, but I thought like, this is not explained very well. I don't understand what's going on with this, with all of this talk about his phone, where could he have possibly been, what cell phone towers was his phone pinging and all the rest of this. I thought I did think it got a bit a bit lost in the in the weeds, but big picture started well lost. I think we both seem to agree on that. You especially. It also, not, you know, spoiler, spoiler, spoiler. To me, it lacked a big pay off at the end. It did, it did Peter out. I kind of thought maybe she was holding something massive back and was going to knock my socks off at the end, which was half the reason I kept listening. I thought she's just going to kill me at the end, what she got, what she got and it ended well, but it didn't. I thought it was horrifically impotent ending. Yeah. Just just nothing. Just absolutely nothing. I was thinking about there are many different way, you know, if you don't need an episode, a final episode where it's like, and we've definitely convicted him or oh, and by the way, you know, we've set him free. I don't need that at the end, but her final episode was just so shoulder shruggy. You know, the thing that frustrated me about it is let me look it up with the exact that yeah, okay, so it's the final episode was called What We Know. Yeah. And to bring this back to the memory kind of thing, I was kind of hoping that this final episode would do the thing where okay, we've been talking to all of these people and all of these witnesses, but what are the actual facts of the case? And even that I felt like the final episode didn't do a good job of summing things up and it ended on such a such a wishy, washy ending. It was, I found it very frustrating and strange. I looked into some of the production and one of the things that I wonder is they had the first few episodes done, yeah, and started broadcasting and then they kept going. Well, that's what we did. Yeah, that's what we did. I totally agree with that. I wonder if that affected the production. I wonder if something like I would be really curious to know what episode is the first episode they did after it had started to air. I think that was smart though. I think that allowed them probably to shake a few trees loose, you know, having the stuff out there. It enabled them to start approaching people and have people approach them. I think that was technically very smart to do a few that when no one knows about it because then you can get people to talk without realizing they're going to be famous. And then once they're all famous, you can get the people in a different context. That's smart journalism. I almost certainly would have recommended they do the same thing if I was in charge of this. If I was the producer is say, look, let's get a few ahead of time and then work it out. But I just wonder if in this particular case, because it became such a phenomenon that that that negatively affected it, that it didn't just become, oh, there's this great podcast called serial, it became the central podcast and a whole news narrative about this is the most popular podcast that has ever been made and then brought into this this story about podcasts are really popular and everybody should go listen to serial. I wonder if that was just if that was too much attention that affected it in a negative way. Yeah, well, I mean, maybe it was too big, but I don't know. I don't think I helped them more than I heard them. An interesting story that came into my head when you were talking about memory and it maps onto the podcast in a funny way, but I mentioned that my wife was coming home and listening to a section and she put a section on in the dining room while we were eating and I was listening to it, obviously, for the second time. And as it was playing, I was I vividly remembered where I was when I listened to it like a week before, like I was thinking, oh, yeah, I was listening to this part at the bottom of the hill near our house as I was driving home and driving the car up towards the house. It was like burned in my memory. I remember everything about it holding the steering wheel, hearing it and everything. And then we listened a bit more and about five, 10 minutes later. I was like, oh, yes, and I remember this bit because this was just as I was approaching the house, like pulling up to the house and like finding a parking space. Clear as clear as day this memory, that was really, really vivid, but then it suddenly occurred to me. The podcast has been going for about 10 minutes and that drive is like 30 seconds. How can this be? And I was thinking, what's gone wrong? What's gone wrong? And I was thinking and thinking and eventually after racking my brains, it suddenly occurred to me. No, I was walking home that day and I was actually walking up the hill and then that's why it was 10 minutes because I then walked to the street and was walking up to the house. And it was just it was funny that a podcast so much about memory gave me such a surprise showing me how my memory is so unbelievably unreliable. And I would have sworn blue if you'd asked me that I was in the car listening to it. And suddenly, no, I wasn't. I was walking. My memory was completely wrong. It's a silly story, but no, no, but it makes a point. It does tell us exactly into my kind of broader thoughts about this, which is a similar thing. It is like, okay, Sarah Keneger is trying to reconstruct memories from 15 years ago, but like we know why I wanted her to talk so much to a memory expert because she did have someone, she just had a couple of experts who came into the show. And it's like, we just we know so much about how how frail human memory is and more importantly, how easily, influencible the memory is. And this is something people just aren't aware of, but how trivially simple it is to not even on purpose, but to put false memories in people's heads. And this whole case about whether or not this guy was able to kill his girlfriend. I felt like the whole thing was just framed in this bizarre way. And I don't know, I felt there was there was a like there was a more interesting story, maybe to be told that did touch on some parts of the criminal justice system in general, because it felt like, okay, we're supposed to have the presumption of innocence, aren't we? And like the like the real the real nail in this guy's coffin is I witnessed testimony from one guy who says he saw a guy called Jay who said he saw Sayed. He didn't see him commit the murder, but he saw the body later is what he said. Yeah, he showed him the body in the trunk whose car he showed him the body in his trunk of his car, which is which is just kind of crazy. I guess let me back it up on level, which is that I could never be on a jury for very many reasons. Well, one of which is I made that whole video about net neutrality. I made that whole video about jury nullification. And so when that this is the problem, you make a video and then you forget what was in your own video. So I would have to go back and watch my video. But there is a particular question that lawyers ask, which is something to the gist of, would you make a verdict, would you make a decision in this case based on information or based on something outside of the law, which is their sneaky way of trying to ask about jury nullification. And I'd have to say yes, I would do that. So I believe in jury nullification. But secondly, the other reason why I would never be on a jury is I could never convict anyone of a crime based on eyewitness testimony as the as the major factor. I feel like we know how how terrible eyewitness testimony is. If I was if I was told like, oh, you're going to be on this jury. I say, okay, well, I'm basically going to disregard everything that any human says. If you just show me what the physical evidence is and we'll make a decision based on that. But but things that people say it counts for nothing in my mind, right? It's all just words. I kind of agree with you, Gray, but like if you showed me a dead body in the in the back of a car, I might not remember what shirt you're wearing or what time it happened or exactly what we said. But I would remember that CGP Gray showed me a dead body in the back of a car. Okay, but you're doing you're doing something different here. You are you are starting from the presumption that you are seeing something. I'm saying instead that that like I accuse I say I saw Brady Harin kill someone. Right. And now you are on trial for murder. And the key witness in that is me. And I'm saying I saw you jurors should just ignore that. It doesn't because we know people just say things that aren't aren't true or that they don't that they don't even know what you're and this is one of the things that there's a difference between a willful lie though. And a hazy recollection is what I'm saying. Like yeah, if this guy if this if this J witness guy who saw the body in the back of the car was trying to frame this guy or was covering for someone else or lying, then he's lying. Okay, that is a that is a judgment and a decision to be made. But I think when you start saying, oh, where did this happen? What time did that happen? And things like that. I think that's a bit unfair sometimes to pick a memory apart. If the core truth to it is true. Like me remembering when I was listening to the podcast going up the hill. Like the fundamental truth is I listened to the podcast where exactly where I was sitting exactly what time I was here and there is our details I got wrong. But the kernel at the at the core of it is true. And like yes, people lie and you can't just rely on eyewitness testimony. But I think sometimes disregarding eyewitness testimony because of trivial details being wrong is a little unfair. Okay, my counter to this is that we used to burn people for being witches based on eyewitness testimony. You'll have to forgive me if I don't find eyewitness testimony terribly convincing. Well, that's as I said, that's different. That's because the person lied and that's why we don't just rely on it. But I don't know. I don't know. Okay, but so here's I feel like the fundamental thing here is the internal state of somebody else's mind is unknowable. And when I talk to people about memory, you're coming at it from the same position that many people do, which is that they think about their own memories in their own head. And I feel like, no, you can't do that. You have to think about it in terms of evaluating what somebody else is saying. And you can't do the same thing. You don't know the internal state of that person's mind. You don't know whether they're intentionally lying or whether they don't even know that they're lying. I mean, one of the things that I did think was relatively good about serial was they did they did kind of point out a, I wish they had done more of it, but they did point out the like the whole system that surrounds this. And so they talked about the main witness, J, and how before the police officially interview him, which is the interview they actually record, they do something like an unofficial pre-interview that was three hours long, that they don't record where they're talking to him. And then they do the real interview. And there's been just a lot of studies on this, how show I like, this is the prime case for like weird false memory things happen where you keep talking to somebody. It's a high stress, high pressure situation. And people in that situation want to help the authority figures. And even if they don't mean to, they start manufacturing more and more details in their mind to match up whatever it is the police want. Yeah. I mean, and that's, and that, you know, this was this deals a lot with the phone calls and explaining when phone calls were made. I still come back to the body and the trunk of a car, and I don't think that that either is a complete lie or, or is not. And like, I don't think there is, I don't think there, I don't think he didn't see the body and then the police jogged his memory or told him, can you just say it for us? He either has decided to tell this fundamental lie to get this guy in trouble, in big trouble, or he hasn't. Okay. But let's just, let's just, let's just take that for a moment, right? It was just that he either he's chosen to lie or he's not. Yeah. That is, that is fundamentally unknowable. Right? You, you, we don't have machines yet that can pry into his brain and tell us why we haven't jury trial because someone, because until, unless it was videotaped or unless God is sitting there and knowing everything, that's how we have to decide things. Until everything in the universe is recorded and everything is known, we have people have to weigh, have to listen to the stories, listen, weigh up the evidence and make it a, of course, it's, of course, it's unknowable. No one knows, but a decision has to be made. We can't just let every murder go, every murder that's not videotaped. My view on it is this, if you remove all the eyewitness testimony is the physical evidence still compelling. And I think that is a, that should be the bar, especially in things like murder cases, is totally removed, Jay, is there still convincing physical evidence that somebody, or that this, this guy killed his ex-girlfriend? If the answer to that question is no, I would, I could never possibly convict someone. I wouldn't care how much eyewitness testimony there was. Okay. I just think I think humans are just more unreliable in their memories than they think they are, even for huge, huge events like this. I mean, this is a terrible, this is a terrible example, but I will bring up people who believe they have been abducted by aliens. Right. Do you think those people are lying? Sometimes, yeah. Other times, you know, they could, it could be sort of, you know, mental illness, or other things going on to understand, but I think some of them are lying. Yeah, some of them are lying. But here's the thing. I've met people who think they have been abducted by aliens. People, I would say, are not, they're not homeless people on the streets with tin foil on their heads. They're normal functioning members of society. They're, I don't think they're mentally ill, and I don't think they think they're lying. But they have some memory that they were abducted by aliens. Yeah, but this guy in jail in Maryland hasn't gone to jail because of someone saying they're abducted by aliens. No, no, no, no. I know, my central point here is you're acting like it's out of the realm of possibility that someone could fabricate having seen a dead body in a truck. Yeah, I could, could this be like an invented memory. Yeah. There are same people who think they have, right, they have attacked out space and been poked and prodded and then deposited back on our, the impressive thing about Jay's invented memory then is he also knew exactly where the murder victims car was in a really obscure place. So yeah, so like this is this is the question right. Was that invented as well? I mean, the police didn't know where that car was and then he said, yeah, and this is where the car is and they went to this obscure place and the car was there. So this, this to me now gets back into like, is that physical evidence? That's kind, that is kind of what I wanted, I wanted like the what we know episode to more clearly sum up. Yeah. And I feel like I would need to like if I was on the jury, I would want to look through those kinds of, those kinds of things and say, okay, you know, and if someone was able to relay information that they could not possibly have known that they could not possibly have, have been communicated to them, I would count that as a kind of physical evidence. Do you know what? So, substantial evidence is important. And I don't know because I wasn't there 15 years ago and you and I just to cut the numpties who listened to a podcast. But let's not, let's not forget that this reporter also wasn't there 15 years ago and she's very emotionally involved and this jury was very quick to convict this guy. And they, and they, and they were in the trial and they don't have a whole lot of doubt. And you know, there aren't a lot of people expressing doubt who were involved actually in the trial and the case other than people who knew this guy and have emotional attachments. And that, that actually counts. It in me deciding whether or not I happen to think this guy is guilty or not, which is completely irrelevant to anything because I'm on the other point of this. But in making my own little decision in my head, which is what the game of this whole serial thing is, that counts, that counts for something. The fact that the people in the room had no doubt and they, they saw the testimony and they were in the room and they made a judgment call about the witnesses. And that does count for something. And I, I completely hear what you're saying about memory and I understand. But I've actually spent a lot of time in court. I've, I've sat through murder trials. I've sat through some very exciting murder trials and some very boring murder trials for my work. And it is a completely different experience. And I must say that this podcast was the closest I've seen or heard to conveying what a real murder trial is like. That's interesting to hear. But, but it's still quite a way off. Yeah, it can still be super boring. I mean, there was one episode where she did try to point out how boring huge sections of a trial actually are. That's, it's not super exciting. Part of my frustrations are just I think like the whole, the whole, again, there are many times when I, when I'm watching or listening to some piece of media and I cannot help but think of how I would want this thing to be or how I want this thing to be different. And because it started to go downhill, I started to find myself thinking more and more about that. And I kind of wanted it to be some other things. You're so unfair on things. This is like the her discussion all over again. We're something started away that excited you and because it didn't play the way you wanted to play, you sometimes go a bit harsh. But no, I, well, I do think it a lot. I think this should have been six episodes, not 12 episodes. I think it could have been a really amazing thing at six episodes. With the exact same stuff, right? Just, you know, you could do a super cut of this and take the 12 episodes, get it down to six. And I think you could have something that's pretty amazing without without adding all the kinds of stuff that I would want to do if I was if I was in charge of this, which I was not, you know, there was something about the length of the journey that appeared to me, though. And I kind of agree with you, but I think maybe you're, you're cutting too hard. And there was something about the pace. One of the strengths of this podcast was the pacing. And I think if you became too snappy and too CGP grey about it and made it really cool, I really quick and really excellent. I think it would lose some of that meanderingness that I don't know. Yeah, if you're going to call six hours snappy, yeah, I guess. Yeah, yeah. Six hours versus 12 hours. Yeah, I just think I think, although although it ran out of steam, content-wise, I don't know, there was something about the pacing that appeared to me. So I don't know if I agree, but maybe you're up. I'm still going to keep harping on this thing about eyewitness test. I just want to look at something. So, okay, here we go. So I just wanted to look up some things about the Innocence Project, which I think was actually the group that started to work within this show, didn't she? Yes. But just on a quick summary from them here. So the Innocence Project basically, they try to go back in four cases similar to this where there may be DNA evidence that can exist in a murder case. If it can be tested now, they want to test it because 15 years ago, it was not as prevalent as it is now. So they're trying to free people who have been falsely imprisoned. And in the United States, they have freed 300 plus people at this point based on DNA evidence, physical evidence that exonerated them from not like it couldn't possibly have been you. We have some other unknown persons blood all over the victim kind of thing. So the most common reason for false conviction is unreliable eyewitness testimony that the jury used. This is for 75% of wrongful convictions, according to the Innocence Project. So 75% of the people who by their measure were wrongfully convicted were done so based on eyewitness testimony. So again, this is not good news for eyewitness testimony. You definitely have a beer in your bottle about the eyewitness testimony. I do. You talk well. I do. And I also, I guess I just think the whole, I don't want to get all upset again and like get on like on a rant. But I, I think that future generations will judge us very harshly for our current prison system or current prison system is horrifically capricious and unnecessarily barbaric and accomplishes nothing. So many systemic problems in it that I think this is the same kind of thing that like we like we look back in history now and go wow, you know how could, how could slavery be so widely present? It's so obviously a horrible thing. How could society just accept that as fine? And in 100, 200 years, people will look back on our prison system as as it currently exists and think similar similar thoughts like how could people possibly accept that horrific system? So I guess that that's partly why like I get very frustrated with a lot of things that are related to the criminal justice system. It's I do not think that it is good in any way. A story I quite, a story I quite like from when I used to sit in trials that I quite, that gives me some sympathy for juries. And I always, this really sticks in my memory. Well, I think it's sticks in my memory. You've got me wondering, yeah. But anyway, yeah, maybe, maybe not. But this is, there was this, a lot of people don't realize this, but I noticed quite a lot how often when jurors come back in after they've deliberated and a verdict is about to be given, how often a few of the jurors are crying, because of the, the, the process and the torment they've just been through of what they've had to do. And I remember I covered this bigger, elaborate murder trial. And these people were accused of killing this other guy by sending him a bomb in the post that he then opened and exploded and killed him. And at one of the main reasons they wanted to kill this guy was because he was going to dob one of the killers in for being a drug dealer. And this guy in the trial completely denied he was a drug dealer like this was like, I'm not, I'm not a drug dealer. This is ridiculous. He wasn't using this against me because I've never had anything to do with drugs in my life. Crazy. So I imagine that would have left some doubt in the jurors minds. So anyway, a whole bunch of other things happened, which I'll tell you about sometime was it was a really interesting trial. And the jurors came back in and some of them were crying because they weren't sure they'd done the right thing. But the verdict was delivered and they found these people guilty. And there was this amazing atmosphere. There's one of the most amazing atmospheres ever is to be in a room when a big verdict is about to be given like it's, it, it really makes you realize what like being able to touch and you know, cut the atmosphere with a knife means it's like it's really a very physical thing. And that so this verdict was delivered and there was this feeling of sort of emotion and excitement. And all these feelings were going on. And then the judge did something in a really interesting way, really, really emotional way. And he said, before I dismiss the jury, and this doesn't always happen. He said, before I dismiss the jury, I want you to stay here jurors. I want you to see this next bit. And then he turned to the prosecutor and said, Mr. Prosecutor, can you please tell me a little bit more about the accused? Because there was a whole bunch of stuff that the jury wasn't allowed to be told. And the prosecutor stood up so triumphantly and said, yes, I can, your honor. The defendant has been convicted of heroin traffic, trafficking three times. And he has all these drug convictions and he reeled off all the drug convictions. And it just changed everything. And the jurors who weren't allowed to know this, the look of relief on their face and the weight that lived, it still since tingles down my spine now, the way it changed the jurors, like they were like, oh, thank God. We were right. The one thing that made us think we were wrong, the motive instantly went away. And all the other physical evidence was still there and they made the right decision. But the one thing they were unsure of was motive because of the laws. That was a really amazing moment. But it also made me really sympathize with what jurors go through. It was a really incredible, incredible experience. I can ask you two final questions. Sure. All right. I know you don't deal in absolutes because you're not a Sith. But if you can, if you can try and give me, I think I do deal in that. Maybe you are a Sith. Well, then give me a yes or no answer to this. Would you recommend someone listen to serial? Yeah, yeah, I think so. I think it's worth listening to or it's worth giving a try. Okay. I mean, lots of people like it. And the... I wouldn't recommend anybody watch her. It's a terrible move. The second thing is not what would you do if you were on the jury? Do you think he did it? And I'm sorry, do you think he did it after listening to 12 episodes? Not would you convict him? Do you think he did it? Okay. Okay. I have a longer thing to say about that. So why don't you first... Obviously, you would recommend it. You first tell me what your answer to that question is. I would obviously recommend serial. I think it was just a fantastic thing. Yes. And you recommend her. And yes, I also recommend her. And I do think he did it. I think he committed the crime that he is in jail for. Not that what I think matters. And I don't know if I was on the jury what I would have done. But after listening to this, I think he did it. And I'm surprised the reporter doesn't. So my answer to your question is... I think it is fundamentally a no-bul. In the current state. I guess the reason why I feel like this is a longer... I don't know. I feel that my answer is longer and more complicated is... In some ways, I don't think whether he did it or whether he didn't do it is relevant. I think in these... People want these answers. And I don't think that that's really what matters. I think it's all a question about evidence and probabilities and reasons. I don't think that a jury should have convicted him of that crime based on what was presented. But of course, that is in no small part by us by my... I don't believe witnesses. I don't care what they say under any circumstance. It is a relevant factor. I think this came down into... What is an interesting case and what started King himself was kind of doing sometimes in the show was trying to see... Like, basically, he had this window of 21 minutes where he's unaccounted for. And it's a question of, could he get from the school to murder his ex-girlfriend and then get back to track practice in time? And I felt like they were trying to find ways to show that he could have done it in this time. There was just enough time if everything went right. But I feel like our whole justice system is supposed to be set up on the presumption of innocence. And so, you have to presume that he is innocent and the fact that he had time to go and commit this murder and come back makes him no different from anybody else who was on the track team. Anybody could have gone there and come back in those 21 minutes. There's nothing special about him except that a jury is looking at him sitting there during the trial. So, I guess that's kind of my long-winded thing of saying, I don't have an opinion at all on whether or not he did it. Do you not have a feeling just as someone who knows humans and hears things and just puts things together in their head? You don't even have a feeling. I understand you think he couldn't be convicted. And if he can't be convicted, he can't be and he should walk through for either whether he did it or not. I'm not asking you that. I'm just asking you what you feel as a human hearing 12 hours of people talk about this, including the person who was convicted. We hear a lot from him. You don't have a feeling. You don't just have like a gut feeling. Because that's all I've got. I've got a bit of evidence that he did it and a bit of evidence that maybe he didn't. And just what I know of humans and what I just think of all the humans I've met and putting it all together in a big blender and a gut feeling. Whether I want to or not, I have a gut feeling. If you told me Brady, you must not have a gut feeling at the end. I'm sorry. I will. And I have one. Are you telling me you don't have one? Well, I guess I do, but it is it is very slight. And like I said, I think it is irrelevant. I don't know. I know it's irrelevant. Mine is irrelevant. Mine is completely anyone who wasn't on the jury's opinion is irrelevant. But we've spent all this time talking about it. I'm just asking if you'll share it with us. What your gut feeling is. Have you got a reason for not sharing it? No, no. I'm I well, I guess only slightly in that I think it sometimes just detracts from the other arguments that I'm trying to make. And in this in the same way like with my humans, need not apply video. I didn't there was things that I didn't want to talk about because I think they were distracting. And so yeah, my my gut feeling in this case is that he didn't do it. Right. But I don't want that to for people to be like, oh, that's why you're focusing on eyewitness testimony. Yeah. Right. That's why I'm hesitant to say that. Okay. Because if some piece of evidence comes out tomorrow that there's like, you know, well, you know, this shows so clearly that he did it. Like it's irrelevant to me. Like I don't care. Like it doesn't change my opinions on eyewitness testimony and how horrific the whole justice system is. I just I feel like, I don't know. I don't know. There's like a lot of stuff that's wrapped up in this. And it's what so it's what so can I yeah, but can I tell you something? You're very notion about like having gut feelings about stuff. That's exactly the kind of thing that scares me about humans and particularly humans on on juries. I'm not I'm not so sure how much juries are actually using any kind of of evidence. And how much they're just going on their own gut feelings like when I was doing the jury jury notification video, I was looking into a bunch of stuff. And it's like you can find some just horrific studies about how people make decisions. It's like ugly people get get longer sentences. Right. You know, like beautiful people don't. I mean like one of the things is like, okay, there are there are vastly more men in prison than there are women because men tend to commit more violent crimes. But for like if you look at very similar cases that are committed by a man or a woman like a woman tends to get a shorter sentence on average than a man for the exact same same kind of crime. And one of the more one of the more famous ones, which is the most like there's not a jury, but it's just a horrific example to me. It's just like the capriciousness of human decision making has to do with parole boards. And the basically you want to see the parole board just right when they get in or right after they've had lunch. But like the longer it's been since they've eaten, the less likely they are to grant parole. And all that's kind of stuff to me is like does not bode well for humans making any kind of rational decisions when they're faced with another human being's life in their hands. And so I feel like man, I bet a lot of this comes down in the jury room to basically even though jurors won't admit it, it's a question of how much they like the witness Jay and how much they like the defendant like and they'll backtrack in their mind their reasons for going one way or the other. But I feel like I don't know the criminal justice system is too important for for a lot of this kind of stuff. Like I feel like the the threshold for convicting someone should be incredibly high to counteract a lot of just the randomness of humans. I agree that you know having gut feelings in the criminal justice systems incredibly dangerous and yeah, and having and prevalent. That's that's the thing that really worries me. It's not like oh this is a dangerous thing we have to be careful of. It's more like no every juror ever. But gut feelings not the worst thing in the world. I mean how often in life, I mean we've evolved these things that we don't even completely understand this ability to know when someone's lie. This feeling is something okay. But stop right there. Like even that I don't like the way that's phrase. Like you're presupposing that it works. You right. We have evolved the ability to know that someone is lying. What's got us this far, hasn't it? Stopped us from going to the bush that we thought might have a big dangerous battle. But no, but no, you again, you're presupposing that your lie detection ability works really well. Right. And what might actually be the case is it works 51% of the time, right, which is good enough to get the species through. But it doesn't mean like, oh, everybody's really great at detecting lies. But I find that like so much of this stuff, people start from the premise that they want. Right. Oh, we're humans are good at detecting lies. Are you have you double blinded this? Because when you do turns out people are crap. People are terrible at this. But they only way overestimate their abilities on this kind of stuff. So I've been very ranty on this podcast. I'm sorry about that. So you're a passionate guy. Yes, that's right. I am. Yes. I was going to commend you on that. Liesping interested in some current news, but this is 15 years old. But the current news is about the podcast, right? There are. That's that's how I found about it through, you know, and things, things of interest to the global community find their way to me, like the serial podcast. Heaven helps someone if you and I are ever on their jury, that's for sure. I will never be on their jury. I will never be allowed on any jury, which I think I would make an awesome juror, which also doesn't doesn't. Yeah. Happy on a jury. Not in there's no way in America I would get on a jury. Because you made your video. No, no, no, because they ask you the question about jury nullification, which is basically instant dismissal, instant dismissal. And they ask questions about eyewitness testimony. And there's there is no lawyer that would accept a juror who says they wouldn't value eyewitness testimony. Because you have it like again, you have to remember it like, oh, I mean, you know, but just like you have to be aware like the the the the the defense and the prosecution are picking jurors. And that there's a bias towards trying to pick people who are influenceable. They're not they're not looking for like the platonic ideal of of fair citizens. You know, like they they don't want people who have experience with it with it. They don't want lawyers on on the jury. Like they don't want any anybody who has experience with with anything that's relevant to the trial. I've seen occasionally people raise the notion of of having professional jurors. And I think that might be less crazy than it sounds. I think that's an interesting notion that like maybe we shouldn't have this weird system where we're trying to pull influenceable people from the general public to serve on juries. And maybe we should have people who are who are used to the procedures and used to how this works. I mean, there may be all kinds of other problems with that. But it's like, it doesn't sound like a crazy idea if I think about it for for more than a few minutes. I'm not saying I'm for it. But it's just it's cross my radar as a potential potential alternative. All right. Are we done with cereal? I guess we're done with cereal. All right. We're probably done all together, right? I think so. Anything else? No, no, no, nothing to report. Oh, yeah, no, I'm actually just check CNN.com and there's lots of stories I want to talk to you about right now. Really? You go check them out. You let me know. Yeah. I'll go. I'll see what's important. I'll go. Or no, actually, who do you want me to check the BBC? I use the BBC one. Funnily enough. The first thing I do is I check BBC Sport and then I check BBC News. So I check what sport news has happened before I check like world news. Action. Let's see. Oh, if I open up BBC.co.uk, no, you do the news one. Click on news. Oh, I'm sorry. Click on news. Is that what you want? What's the top story? Watkins X cleared over abuse image. I have no idea who that is. You know about the Charlie Hebdo stuff, presumably, a lot. Yeah, yeah. I saw that on Twitter. I can wear that. Yeah. That's the kind of thing like it crossed my radar. Leaders in election TV debates. Row. That's remarkably uninformative title. Oh, snow, snow is in storm. Sweep across the UK. There we go. The annual snow apocalypse. You have to talk about that. I love snow. I love snow. It hasn't snowed right. But I can see the snow out in the distance. It makes me say that it hasn't come here. But I always say I hope it snows. And my wife's like, no, snow is terrible. There's something there's something major. Asia plain. Asia plain. Fuse, large located. You probably already knew that. I'm all right across that. Yeah, you're right across that. Are you pro snow or anti snow? What do you mean pro snow or anti snow? Do you like it when it snows? Like do you like if I said to you? Yeah, of course, I love it when it snows. It's one of the worst things about living in London as it doesn't snow. Right. So if I said I could make it snow tonight and it'll be all white and fluffy when you go out tomorrow, you say do it. Yeah, please do. I don't have that power. But despite my God complex, I do not have that power.

==Episode List==

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "H.I. #29: Courses for Horses". Hello Internet. Hello Internet. Retrieved 31 October 2017.