On the other hand, I always had the sense that Benjamin regarded Gruber as a kneejerk Apple apologist, and this too could not have helped their relationship.
But their differences led to the show's magic. Their contrasting styles would turn the show into a focused, intimate meditation on Gruber's thoughts on industry (plus side interests of baseball, Kubrick, etc.), often serving as a preview of what written work would be to come on Daring Fireball. While it can come across as aloofness, Dan has the passive ability to subtly guide the conversation and give it some sense of structure, and he's great at knowing when to let the other person speak. There were also incredibly funny moments of East Coast camaraderie that would keep the side topics interesting and lively.
It seems that Gruber has taken all of this for granted in deciding his show is better without Benjamin. Quite sad.
I remember when Let's Make Mistakes split off and formed a new podcast network it felt odd to me at the time, like they used 5By5 to get some initial audience and then took them for themselves. For some reason it fit with the impression I get that Mike Monteiro is an asshole.
With this move I am done with the Talk Show. I just dont care any more.
It's not worth listening to without Dan Benjamin.
Hypercritical is excellent.
Put another way, I very much doubt any of these co-hosts you admire share your view that Dan is clueless.
The problem is John Siracusa, who basically knows too much.
>It's not worth listening to without Dan Benjamin.
I can't imagine how someone could do this to Dan.
Hypercritical is the new hotness anyway.
Shame on Gruber.
I was never a talk show fan and prefer the excellent Hypercritical (with John Siracusa). For those who haven't listened to hypercritical: give it a shot, you won't regret it -- http://5by5.tv/hypercritical
Listening right now to the mule version of The Talk Show, it feels dull and way worse than when cohosted by Dan. It would actually be way funnier with a cohost like Mike Monteiro.
Seriously though, it's John's show and he's free to take it to another network. I just _really_ hope that this transition was done in a respectful manner and that there isn't bad blood between 5by5 and Mule.
A little background: Let's Make Mistakes, Mule Radio's main show, got started with 5by5's help. Let's Make Mistakes was a 5by5 network show for it's first year of existence. It garnered all of the listenership and cross promotion that comes with being part of 5by5. After a year of getting traction, Mule split the show off into its own podcasting network, essentially becoming a competitor to 5by5. If Mule now aggressively poached The Talk Show from 5by5 then it was certainly a dick move.
Of course, we don't have all the details and this is just speculation. So again, I hope this was done in a way that respected Dan and 5by5.
As you, I also feel he's free to move his show wherever he wants, but I also thing he owes his listeners an explanation, or at least a comment. 5by5 was the house we visited to listen to John (with Dan) and we show up and he's not there. A mere link on his website, with no explanation, is, in my opinion, rather distasteful. I haven't heard the new episode until the end, so I don't know if he makes any comment at the end. But certainly there's no explanation or introduction. Even if they parted ways in an unfriendly fashion, he still owes a lot to Benjamin.
Finally, he's an awful Sponsor message reader. Poor Piezo.
Looks like John was the initiator:
> John approached us and we were thrilled to welcome him.
Last fall, Dan, John Siracusa, Merlin, and Marco were enchanted by his new producer, Faith Korpi. A couple of months later she disappeared. Jake Erickson wrote the following on Quora: "She and Dan had a falling out. She was fired from 5by5, but was given Geek Friday back as a concession to Dan's other hosts. They are not speaking any more."
The fact that within the span of a few months Dan lost Let's Make Mistakes, The Talk Show, and the producer that his other hosts stuck up for strongly hints that there is something about Dan's off-air personality that rubs people the wrong way.
To be fair, Let's Make Mistakes wasn't "lost." Mike Monteiro actually spun it off into its own podcasting network: http://muleradio.net/
Just last week I was loving how Dan will say something outrageous, framed as a casual, factual statement about the co-host, to elicit a reaction. ("You just sit around in your underwear while you're doing this podcast." - not an actual quote, I'm just characterizing). Of everybody else, Gruber responded with the least appreciation of Dan's humor.
Oh well, maybe the new chemistry will be good too.
It's always when they cycle through "I think you mean.." and "No, you're probably thinking..."
It doesn't always go as planned which is probably why you were confused. The show is filled with random tangents which could be just as engaging. Topics include his other podcasts, Sodastream, keyboard, GTD, daughter, Star Wars, etc.
Pro Tip: sit with the episode for at least 30 minutes if you really want to hear the topic of the week. The first 29 minutes are build up to excellence.
Edit: I love the fact that while I was typing two other posts described the exact same thing. Awesome.
Who's the guy in the middle left?
(I think the discussion on this submission is one of the most intellectually-uninteresting HN discussions ever!)
To be honest, I'll probably not follow The Talk Show anymore, and in my mind, the show was far from making or breaking 5by5.
Gruber, you OWE an explanation to your readers, period!.
As Jim Dalrymple commented in his post (http://www.loopinsight.com/2012/05/17/blogging-is-not-a-thin...) :
"Blogging is also about trust. If you’re readers know that you are writing from your heart, they will listen. They will engage you, and in the process you will learn something new. That, in turn, will help shape your opinions.
Blogging doesn’t have an agenda, other than expressing your true thoughts on a subject."
That trust just started to crumble..
edit: here's a screengrab of the Mule Radio app bundle if you're curious: http://cl.ly/1E240C0C272c2R3L2N19
The application and the source code in question belongs to Black Pixel. We designed and developed the application in-house, at our own expense, and were going to license the binary for free, non-exclusive use on the 5by5 network, but that deal didn't work out.
Quite some time later, we got to know the folks at Mule Radio, and felt like there might be a good opportunity for our work to see the light of day. So we discussed things with them and licensed the binaries to them for use on their show.
So, to be clear, this app belongs to Black Pixel. We've never received a dime of money for it from anyone, because we wanted to have complete creative control over the product. We're happy that our app has found a home and are donating our time to support and add new features to the application as time goes on.
We hope you enjoy it.
-Daniel Pasco, CEO
"Fuck you. Pay me" - Mike Monteiro.
You have never received a dime of money for your app. So did you donate your app to the Mule Radio Network?
I had never heard of Black Pixel before. Now I know that you (or at least one of your developers) is rather of the lazy kind. Comm'on, renaming 5by5 to mule should have been a no-brainer!
> I had never heard of Black Pixel before. Now I know that you (or at least one of your developers) is rather of the lazy kind.
You know what? It was a bug. Bugs happen. We actually discovered it a few days ago but, the app store being what it is, we couldn't get it swapped out in time. We have nothing but the highest confidence in Black Pixel and would jump at the opportunity to work with them again.
No one involved in this is being lazy and your insinuation is not only wrong and rude it's completely unnecessary.
I listen to the talk show (and a lot of other podcasts) while I work. <gossipy>It seemed like there was some tension from John's perspective on the last episode</gossipy> Then it was strange that there wasnt an ep last week. Now we know why.
Or that he wouldn't like anyone saying that kind of stuff on his shows. I understand him.
EDIT: As I suspected there's nothing shady going on, but my guess as to the ownership was wrong. It's explained here: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3994053
5by5 has an app, only recently released. Why would there be another one? Is the app 5by5 has the same as this Mule one? What is this Mule thing? Is it completely new?
Now we know what happened with that version.
So, Dan wanted an iOS app for some time now (year? more?) - and he was working with Black Pixel (http://blackpixel.com) on that.
We don't know exactly why, but that app was never released - Dan stopped talking about it (I'm not actually sure about this, somebody please correct me if I'm wrong.). Recently, he (again, not sure) wrote new app - that's what's on App Store as 5by5 app.
Parts of "old" app were apparently reused by Black Pixel while working on Mule Radio app (also by Black Pixel.).
Presumably, they were previously working with BlackPixel to do a podcasting app for the 5by5 shows, which was never released. The Mule Radio app appears to be a re-branded version of that unreleased app.
According to this tweet by Dan Benjamin about adding podcasting to the 5by5 app, he feels other apps already do it better. This may have been the reason why they scuttled their own podcasting app and went with a live broadcast app instead:
Probably coincidental, but TTH was a tent pole show, and Big Week appears to be one as well.
I also think that bringing in Dalrymple might have made 5by5 feel too crowded. To my knowledge, of the 5 or so major podcasts on 5by5, Talk Show was the only one hosted by a blogger. (Though I'm hesitant to call John a blogger because he rarely writes original content. 95% of DF is links or quotes with one sentence of analysis, but that's neither here nor there) Dalrymple was only the second blogger, and Gruber must have felt that Jim was stealing his thunder.
Frankly, I think it's for the best. The Talk Show has been going down hill, and can't hold a candle to B&A or Hypercritical.
This seemed more apparent when Dan teased him a bit for not wearing the 5by5 shirt. Seemed like a sore point.
Dan left me with a small impression that gruber what "phoning it in" by commenting on the fact that gruber didn't dress up for the show. Dan, it's a radio show. Good luck guys.
It's fun to guess at these things.
I'm sure Mule offered Gruber a lot of money to bring the podcast to them. Got to support the family right?
It's a shame. Dan gives John structure. On the new Talk Show John's rambling all over the place. Sad.
Benjamin: "We'll be back regular time next week, right?"
Gruber: "I guess so."
Benjamin: "Ok. Thanks John."
That strikes me as something Gruber would get pissed off about — Dan not clearing something like a new t-shirt that uses 'his' brand.
"The Talk Show T-Shirt (WWDC 2012 Edition) has finally arrived!Featuring The Talk Show logo printed on a black"
"This run is done, thanks for coming by!"
One day a week I work on-site for a client and it's a monster commute. I need four hours of podcasts each week to make the drive down and back bearable. The Talk Show helped me get through a big chunk of that so it's a bummer to see its old format go away.
I'm going to give the new Talk Show a shot though. Even though Mike Monteiro doesn't appear to be directly involved with this new version (yet) my usual reaction to most things involving him isn't very favorable. I don't particularly enjoy his current podcast at Mule Radio and his recent book is good but not as good as he or the people involved want you to believe it is. But I find Gruber's take on most things, in particular Apple, too good to just automatically discount this new show through guilt by association.
Dan is a professional and has my respect, where as Monteiro makes cheap vulgar jokes. I know which attitude I prefer to support.
UPDATE: Other explanations I'd also bet on (might as well hedge, right?):
(1) Gruber wanted to be with his friends on the Mule network
(2) 5by5 was getting a little crowded, and Gruber wanted the Talk Show to stick out a bit more.
I had always assumed it was free and easy advertisement for their apps, sites etc.
No idea how much, but I think it was David Smith of Developing Perspective that said a week of DF sponsorship was $7K and 5by5 $5K? Sure at least the latter must depend on the show. Plus I'm probably mixing things up. Episode 42?
We can't know. Mule prices their sponsorships at 200$ (without TTS, lets see when this show is priced in). TTS at 5by5 was charging a lot much higher.
So I suspect Gruber was making less and less % of the 5by5 total income as other shows became more popular (hypercritical hit a million downloads when the Lion review, also Marco Arment's show was pretty popular judging by my twitter timeline) and also more and more shows.
When TTS came back more than two years ago it was a handful of podcasts on 5by5 making less money, but I suspect Gruber took the biggest chunk then. Now he didn't anymore and the overall quantity didn't increase enough, so he moved to new pastures where he will get more money and maybe more control of the show.
Another thing: Gruber's a terrible host. Don't get me wrong, I think the man is great, his blog fantastic, a magnificent writer, and a really smart guy. But his constant pauses, breaks, and seeming unwillingness to be on a show doesn't make for good listening. Which is why Dan was KEY to the show. Having him to help guide the conversation, reel Gruber back in, and most importantly, feed him the softballs so Gruber could knock them out of the park was KEY to the success of the show.
I just don't understand how Gruber can expect to do the show without him. Now maybe if part of this was because of bad blood, and Gruber is joined by his friends it won't matter, he will WANT to talk to them and it wont be an issue. But I don't know.
All in all, I'm not sure I'm going to keep listening. Gruber & Friends only interests me if the friends are the aforementioned Lonely Sandwich, or Merlin, or other guys who's shows and insight I've come to know and love.
As for the reasoning? Your guess is as good as mine, and I think people are right in assuming it's bad blood otherwise an official statement should have come from someone. To be fair, as respect to the fans and people who listen one, if not both should have said something (Leo Laporte is very open when his shows/hosts move on) because it's the professional thing to do. If the split is personal not professional the silence makes more sense. That said, these guys make themselves out to be professional so even if it was personal they should still have come out an said something (again, see Laporte).
One thing is for certain. Listen to Dan's back and forth with hosts like Siracusa, Dalrymple, and of course Merlin Mann. Merlin signs off with an "I Love You" and you can tell there's a genuine friendship amongst that professional relationship. Gruber and Dan never had that, so maybe its for the best they go their separate ways.
But for both to say nothing to anyone is a big Screw You to the fans (note I only used screw to be polite, I would have opted for the harsher option), and doesn't leave me wanting to hear Talk Show 3.0.
I'll still read Daring Fireball religiously though.
Mike is mostly mocking the people upset with this on Twitter, but if you enjoy a show made up of two people, people get annoyed when one party leaves with no explanation.
Lots of people say "they don't OWE us an explanation". I disagree. People invested in 5by5 through buying shirts, buying the app, listening to ads and using their promo codes, and the time they spent listening and interacting with the network. And when you sign off a show saying another one is coming, and then switch networks and drop 1/2 of the show with no explanation, that's rude.
The way this went down, there's two possibilities:
1. Dan had no idea, which is why he got the shirts printed and TTS was still on 5by5's recording schedule as of Gruber's announcement it moved to Mule.
2. Dan was in on it, but had agreed with Gruber and Mule to keep it secret, for whatever reason.
The Talk Show was started by John and Dan in 2007. The website (thetalkshow.net) is registered to Dan and was most likely coded by him as well. Dan has just as much invested into The Talk Show as Gruber. It would've been much classier to leave 5by5 and start an entire new show.
The Talk Show is Dan and John. Period.
I disagree that the show is bad, though. Jason's hilarious, despite his terrible taste in movies. The two of them have great chemistry together.
I still enjoy John's shows, but I agree with many others in this thread on this point: a year ago, TTS was the podcast in my list that I'd drop any other to listen to when a new one aired. Lately, that's become Hypercritical, which always leaves me feeling like I learned something.
I do like 5by5, and use Macs myself, but a toning down of the echo-chamber is not all bad.
I think i learnt the most with Siracusa and Horace Dediu, but the show with Merlin Mann is the most inspirational.
When personal relationships split, it's a very hard, emotional thing to talk about, and people tend to shy away from discussing it.
And that's what has me worried, and most upset.
But for crying out loud, this is ridiculous. The Kremlinology going on here is batshit insane! It's like reading the National Enquirer, only with less real information!
Hell, it could be nothing more than Dan & John's schedules no longer syncing up.
What a bunch of gossipy hens.
But when you have spent almost 2 hours a week listening to them, or even with a donation. Well, you tend to care. And you want to know why something is not like it was anymore. Lacking an official response... we'd want to fill the blanks.
I think Gruber probably wanted a higher % and more money from it than Dan was willing. Maybe even more than the other hosts?
Gruber and Dan's chemistry on the show was definitely on the decline since the old Bond movie reviews, though.
it's just a shame that John isn't respectful enough of his readers/listeners to just admit what happened to break up his relationship with Dan.
It's called "The Talk Show". Gruber/Mule is using the built in fan-base from the previous show, and by calling it the same, be it "Talk Show 3.0" or "Talk Show Season 3" you're inviting comparisons to the previous one and it's not the same.
Everytime a new television season starts up we don't say "oh it takes a few episodes to get the footing", that's what season 1 is for.
Calling this "The Talk Show" (which it clearly isn't), using similar graphics, similar style, all of those things are, as Gruber would say, dick moves. If Gruber wanted to leave the show, move to another network fine. But come up with a new title. Many people would just assume "oh okay, Gruber has a new show that he's doing". Once we went a few weeks without Talk Show we might think "Hmm, guess The Talk Show is done?" and that's that.
But by DELIBERATELY making this out to be the same show is a bit scummy.
Maybe Dan fired John, and as payback he did this. Maybe John quit and took the show with him. Either way, it should have been launched and branded as a completely new thing if thats how they want it to be thought as.
If they're going to call it "The Talk Show" than its a continuation of what we already had and therefore I expect the quality 90 episodes brings. And if that's not there I'll give up, just like I do with TV shows that run their course after a few seasons.
But this is low. Add the fact that neither Dan nor John have taken the high road and announced the split publicly and with decorum, is souring my opinion of both of them.
In light of that, I don't think the weekend was too long to wait for a statement from him.
Gruber, on the other hand, obviously knew of his own plans well in advance.
Benjamin was hit broadside and made an honorable statement.
That's all we need to know.