Newcomer Podcast
Does That Mean the Cat's Dead?

Does That Mean the Cat's Dead?

The end of an era: We say goodbye to a host and look back at the year that was.

Tom Dotan, Katie Benner, and I became friends in San Francisco back in 2014 when we all worked as technology reporters at The Information. But we didn’t achieve that core pillar of modern friendship until August 2021 when we started a podcast together.

Insider generously let Tom co-host the podcast with me — and Katie, a reporter at the New York Times, came on every few episodes as a regular special guest.

A year and a half ago we kicked off the show with an interview of Rippling CEO Parker Conrad. Since then, publishing most Tuesdays, we’ve pumped out 69 episodes and have built up a loyal following of listeners for our niche tech media podcast. With our intense focus on how the media covers technology stories, we’ve become a must-listen for newsrooms, tech public relations shops, startup world movers and shakers, and tech industry onlookers.

We’ve had a variety of guests on the show. We’ve featured venture capitalists, startup founders, political operatives, and security experts. In our most popular episode, we took a look at the media’s coverage of the rise and fall of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick with the old Uber CEO’s former top deputy, Emil Michael.

Reporters, especially our reporter friends, have been a regular fixture of the show. We’ve talked with reporters like the New York Times’ Erin Griffith and Mike Isaac, the Wall Street Journal’s Deepa Seetharaman, Rolfe Winkler, and Kirsten Grind, Semafor’s Ben Smith and Reed Albergotti, Insider’s Aki Ito, Washington Post’s Taylor Lorenz, and Puck’s Teddy Schleifer.

Now the show — at least as we’ve come to know it — is coming to an end.

Tom is taking a job at the Wall Street Journal and he’s stepping back from his co-hosting duties. Today’s episode is our last together. The episode is a fun look back at some of the themes that we’ve explored over the past year and a half.

I’d encourage you to DM Tom on Twitter with your Microsoft story ideas and tips. Hopefully Tom will come back on the show as a guest and this memoriam will look overblown.

This iteration of the Dead Cat show is going out on a high, apparently ranking number two among tech news shows at this moment.

Going forward, I plan to continue podcasting and would love to get your input on the future of the show. I might keep the name “Dead Cat,” or I might not. I’m rather fond of it. (By the way, I explain the origins of the show’s name here.)

Leave a comment or send me an email with your thoughts on what the future of the podcast should be. I’m open to suggestions for co-hosts, interview subjects, topics, show names, etc.

As I talk about on this week’s episode, I’m inclined to align the show more closely with Newcomer newsletter content, meaning going forward it will probably be more focused on the business of technology and less about how it’s covered.

In January, I hope to experiment with different formats and see what works. I think the podcast will continue to be free, meant to draw people into the newsletter and to attract a broader audience. I might pause the show in February for a relaunch or might decide that I can keep my stride. We’ll see!

Anyway, this was a really enjoyable last episode to record. I hope you’ll give it a listen and help us wish Tom farewell.

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Newcomer Podcast
A podcast about Silicon Valley, hosted by newsletter writer and independent journalist Eric Newcomer. Listen in for interviews with the dealmakers and builders who matter. Subscribe to for summaries of the episodes plus tech industry news, scoops, and analysis.