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Media Masters
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Media Masters

Author: Media Masters

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Extended one-to-one interviews with the key people in the industry. Find out their tips for career success, and peek behind-the-scenes at their workplace. Candid, thoughtful and reflective - a chance to share the insight of those at the very top of their game. Presented by Paul Blanchard.
276 Episodes
Media Masters - Daniel Roth

Media Masters - Daniel Roth


Daniel Roth is editor-in-chief of LinkedIn. Described by Business Insider as ‘the most powerful business journalist on the internet’, he oversees their Daily Rundown of news and insights, which is viewed by more than 40 million members a day. With users spanning 56 countries and nine languages, the site could be considered the world’s largest business publication. In this in-depth interview, Daniel outlines how the “three C’s” – 'creating, curating and cultivating' content – help to “pop the filter bubbles” of social media, explains how teams of “relevance engineers” use machine learning to keep users’ newsfeeds fresh and relevant, and argues that, with more than two million posts hosted on the site daily, “writing is the new resumé“.
James Harding is co-founder and editor of Tortoise Media. Starting at the Financial Times on the European desk, he later opened their bureau in Shanghai before covering the media beat. In 2007, he moved on to the Times where, at 38, he became its youngest ever editor. He was ousted by owner Rupert Murdoch five years later, and moved on to the BBC as director of news and current affairs. In this in-depth interview, James argues that the demand for breaking news has led to "headline addiction", explains how their 'ThinkIn' conferences are creating a more open form of journalism which puts the emphasis on context and depth, and describes the moment he decided to leave the BBC to launch Tortoise on Kickstarter – despite being tipped to become Director-General.
Julia Hartley-Brewer is a journalist and talk radio presenter. A vocal and high-profile Brexiteer, her appearances on shows such as Question Time often divide opinion and provoke fierce debate on social media. In this in-depth interview, Julia argues that her talkRADIO show speaks to an audience that is “sneered at” by a “largely liberal media elite”, discusses the “terrifying phenomenon” of ‘no platforming’ and its effect on democracy, and defends the charge that opinionated, ‘non-neutral’ radio talk shows have contributed to the increasingly combative tone of political debate. 
Justine Picardie is the editor-in-chief of Harper’s Bazaar UK. During her long career she has been features director of Vogue, editor of the Observer magazine and a columnist for the Telegraph, and has written five books. In this in-depth interview, Justine reflects on her career as she departs the magazine and describes how she rediscovered “a sense of sisterhood” in the editor’s chair in memory of her late sister; discusses her role as launch editor of Town & Country, and how the “dream of Britishness” is popular in the US; and advocates for the “power of paper” over digital – and the connection between fashion and great works of literature.
Martin Bright is an investigative journalist and social entrepreneur. During his 20-year career he’s covered politics, religion and culture for a range of newspapers, magazines and television channels, and was the first non-Jewish political editor of the Jewish Chronicle. While at the Observer in 2003, he exposed the dirty tricks behind the Iraq War after receiving a leaked memo from GCHQ whistleblower Katherine Gun – a story dramatised in the new film ‘Official Secrets’.  In this in-depth interview, he discusses the real events behind the film and how it felt to see Matt Smith play him on screen; reflects on his time with the Tony Blair Faith Foundation – and why he now believes it was ultimately doomed to fail; and describes why he founded Creative Society, a non-profit dedicated to social mobility in journalism and the creative industries.
Jeremy Bowen is the BBC’s Middle East editor. One of Britain’s best-known war correspondents, over the last 35 years he has brought the region’s most important stories to our screens – despite being shot, robbed at gunpoint, threatened, arrested and even thrown in jail. In this in-depth interview, Jeremy relives some of his most pivotal moments, from his first foreign assignment covering the invasion of Kuwait in 1990 to his recent battle with cancer; discusses the practical challenges of reporting impartially on issues like Israel, when both sides complain every report is biased and even the choice of individual words have to be taken carefully; and takes us behind the scenes of his interview with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.
Roula Khalaf is deputy editor of the Financial Times. Described in 1991 as an “insolent reporter from Forbes magazine” by the ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ Jordan Belfort, she was subsequently fictionalised in the Oscar-winning film. Starting as their North Africa correspondent in 1995, her rise though the FT ranks has been consistent – as Middle East editor she launched their regional edition, and led their coverage of the Arab Spring. In this in-depth interview, she celebrates the “rebirth of fact checking” prompted by the Trump presidency, discusses the implications of Brexit through a global financial lens, and describes the role AI plays in their journalism – including the “Janet Bot” which alerts editors to the under-representation of women within its pages.
Media Masters - Chris Burns

Media Masters - Chris Burns


Chris Burns is head of audio and digital for BBC England, and is responsible for the majority of their local radio stations across the country. Starting as a late-night phone-in presenter for Radio Trent, her career has included stints editing shows on Radio 4 such as Woman’s Hour, Any Questions and Start the Week, and she is now tasked with reinventing the medium for the next generation. In this in-depth interview, Chris walks through a career dedicated to radio, having developed a love for it as a child, argues that “repeats shouldn’t be a dirty word” as they give people a chance to revisit much-loved programmes, and explains how new technology is driving a deeper “emotional connection” with listeners.
Melanie Blake is a celebrity agent and author. Starting her career at ‘Top of the Pops’ in the 90s, in her four years on the show she increasingly advised stars on a myriad of professional opportunities, which led to her launching her own agency.  In this in-depth interview, she takes us behind the scenes of the multi-million pound deals brokered for client magazine spreads, books, tours and television shows; reveals her strategy for the cut-throat negotiations around structured reality shows such Big Brother; and pledges never to end her fight against industry “ageism, classism and sexism” – which are “still very real barriers for women in the entertainment industry”.
Fraser Nelson is editor of The Spectator, the world’s oldest weekly magazine. Celebrating a decade in the editor’s chair, on his watch circulation is now at its highest ever – nearing 80,000 print, 2.5m online and 1.4m podcast listeners. In this in-depth interview, Fraser describes how he spent his early years as editor trying to recreate “the Boris peak” and contrasts it with now covering his predecessor as Prime Minister; welcomes the greater numbers of people willing to pay for quality journalism, because print advertising revenue is “never coming back”; and explains why commissioning the cover cartoon is one of his most important responsibilities.
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