Sunday 4 December 2016


My podcast daily digest is becoming a bit overwhelming and back episodes are stacking up, even though I usually leave it playing pretty much non-stop. One more exquisitely engrossing series from National Public Radio that I’m making time for lately, however, is called “How I Built This” hosted by Guy Roz of the TED Radio Hour, which profiles entrepreneurs, influencers and so-called disrupters of industry and their products.
These biographies have all been pretty interesting and really striking insofar as they hinge at one point or throughout on the chance and the unlikely break—and there’s really something in being able to recognise it when the opportunities do come. I episode that seemed particularly resonate and positive was on the media property VICE that began when the Fates consigned a recovering addict named Suroosh Alvi with no journalistic experience to run an underground zine in Montrรฉal. The multi-billion dollar publishing empire grew out a weekly cobbled together by Alvi and contacts he’d met on the way to breaking his destructive habits called the Montrรฉal Voice got its first big moment of exposure when Alvi claimed facetiously that their paper had to drop the “o” from its name due to a dispute with the Village Voice—which was totally fabricated. Without venturing into the realm of fake news, perhaps I should plead that PfRC is being taken to court by Tom Servo for infringement of intellectual property. Explore more stories behind the founders of today’s biggest start-ups and up-starts at the link up top.