Bob Garfield

Host, On The Media

Bob Garfield is the co-host of On the Media

Bob Garfield isn’t exactly a media whore, but he’s extremely promiscuous.

Apart from On the Media, Bob has been a columnist for 30-plus years, at the moment on the subjects of media and marketing for The Guardian and MediaPost. In the world of marketing he is an institution, like the Red Cross. Or San Quentin.

When not casting broadly, Bob casts podly, with former OTM producer Mike Vuolo on the insanely popular Slate language program “Lexicon Valley.” In print, Bob has been a contributing editor for the Washington Post Magazine, Civilization and the op-ed page of USA Today. He has also written for The New York Times, Playboy, Sports Illustrated, Atlantic and Wired and been employed variously by ABC, CBS, CNBC and the defunct FNN as an on-air analyst. As a lecturer and panelist, he has appeared in 37 countries on six continents, including such venues as the Kennedy Center, the U.S. Capitol, the Rainbow Room, the Smithsonian, Circus Circus casino, the Grand Ole Opry, the U.N., Harvard University, Princeton University and, memorably, a Thai Kickboxing ring in Cape Town, South Africa.

He is the author of five books, most recently Can’t Buy Me Like. His first book, Waking Up Screaming from the American Dream, was published by Scribner in 1997, favorably reviewed and quickly forgotten.  His 2003 manifesto on advertising, And Now a Few Words From Me, is published in six languages (although, admittedly, one is Bulgarian). His 2009 crackpot screed The Chaos Scenario, about the supposed collapse of mass media and advertising, has all come true. Garfield co-wrote “Tag, You’re It,” a snappy country song performed by Willie Nelson, and wrote an episode of the short-lived NBC sitcom “Sweet Surrender.” It sucked.


Bob Garfield appears in the following:

The Origins of The Ukraine Corruption Conspiracy Theory

Friday, November 08, 2019

A close-up on the controversial columnist's role in the impeachment imbroglio. 

Can We Govern Ourselves?

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Can we govern ourselves? John Adams didn't think so. Brooke speaks with Jill Lepore about her book "These Truths."

Mark Zuckerberg On The Road

Friday, October 25, 2019

In a speech, testimony and leaked audio, we've heard a lot from the Facebook CEO recently. 

What "Running From Cops" Learned From "Cops"

Friday, October 25, 2019

And what "Cops" reveals about our fascination with punishment. 

As Assad Assumed Control Over Kurdish Syria, Journalists Fled

Friday, October 18, 2019

How reporters are following the situation in Syria from elsewhere in the Middle East. 

The Rojava Revolution In Peril

Friday, October 18, 2019

Lost in the narrative of war in northern Syria is the story of a threatened oasis of democracy.

Moderators Are Still Asking The Worst Debate Question

Friday, October 18, 2019

How journalists fail audiences when they focus on taxes.

Introducing... Impeachment: A Daily Podcast

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Why a State Dept. Ukraine expert says Trump sidelined him. 

Trump Sees Conspiracies Everywhere

Friday, October 04, 2019

Italy, Australia, UK, Ukraine. When all you've got is corruption, everything looks like a conspiracy.

An Impeachment Unlike Any Other

Friday, September 27, 2019

Why one historian thinks that the present process is a "botch."

How The Bidens Got Involved

Friday, September 27, 2019

There is no moral equivalency between Trump's predations and what he accuses the Bidens of. And yet...

Live Streaming Truth and Reconciliation

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Bob speaks to New York Times correspondent Julie Turkewitz about how the truth and reconciliation process in Gambia is must-see-tv.

Gen Z Saves the Turtles, the Planet

Friday, September 20, 2019

How young people are communicating with each other about environmental activism.

The Fight Against the Original New Deal

Friday, September 20, 2019

What the backlash to the last New Deal can teach us about the coming fight for the Green New Deal. 

Understanding the Terror of Domestic Violence

Friday, September 13, 2019

How the media and law fail to capture the domestic violence epidemic — and its potential solutions.

Good Riddance, John Bolton

Friday, September 13, 2019

Pundits bemoaning John Bolton's ouster should take a closer look at his record.

Why Many Afghans Don't Understand 9/11

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

During the height of fighting in Afghanistan, one survey found that 92 percent of southern Afghan men hadn't heard of 9/11. We look at why misconceptions about this 18-year war persist.

Reporting the Weather in #2019

Friday, September 06, 2019

Probabilistic forecasting for an impatient audience in search of certainty. 

Remembering Les Gelb

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Leslie Gelb died last week at the age of 82. Brooke revisits an enlightening conversation they had about his role in the creation of the Pentagon Papers.

The Self-Driving Car Sales Pitch

Friday, August 30, 2019

It'll be a marvelous future, if we buy in.