There’s a new season out now of Mozilla’s long-running branded company podcast:
The new season continues their focus on how the internet and offline worlds interact with host Bridget Todd, with an appropriate theme this season of how artificial intelligence can put people over profit.
Additionally, I want to highlight an interesting experiment they tried with their previous season from mid-2022. Mozilla, like a lot of companies, publishes different written reports about business accountability and the wider landscape. Sustainability reports, diversity reports, etc. Mozilla in particular has a long track record of producing an Internet Health Report that compiles stories about how to build a safer and healthier internet for all users. Given the overlap between the annual report and the topics covered in the IRL podcast, they merged them together.
I got to hear about this approach from the editor of the report, both in written and podcast form, Solana Larsen. Their goal was to take a complex and dense topic and “make it not feel like work to consume”. The podcast episodes are approachable chunks of time on interesting topics, and they made a point to flip the usual approach of bringing in professors and big tech leaders. Instead, they found community leaders in AI and the internet, like entrepreneurs building for users in Africa. “It takes some extra work to help these guests, since they don’t speak in soundbites and aren’t used to being interviewed” - in my opinion it really paid off in making the show stand out from most other tech podcasts.
Solana also shared a bit about the long-standing partnership Mozilla has with Pacific Content. Even as the Mozilla team working on the show has evolved, Pacific Content has had continuity in the production approach and quality of the show. Solana led the effort for this season on the topics, types of guests, and themes for interviews. Pacific Content drafted scripts with Solana revising, and Pacific Content handled the core elements of the editing and publishing process. Mozilla’s most effective promotion channel, throughout the seasons of the show, has been announcements in the Mozilla browser since it’s a huge existing audience for the brand and there’s strong overlap between browser users and the internet themes of the show.