November 17, 2014
When the founders of OkCupid started one of the most popular dating sites on the Internet, they didn’t intend to find out all of humanity’s deep, dark secrets. All they wanted was to help people make babies. However, they accidentally ended up with a treasure trove of information about the difference between what people say (and even think) about themselves and what they actually do – and you won’t like it.
By analyzing the language and behavior of OkCupid users, they’ve determined that you’re probably a lot more racist than you think, and you can actually guess someone’s race with a stunning degree of accuracy based on what they care about. (It involves lumberjack music festivals.) You’re also probably a lot gayer, unless you actually label yourself as bisexual. The Internet as a whole is rife with this data -– you can even track the voting results for the 2008 election by mapping which areas of the country Googled racist jokes. But you shouldn’t be afraid of leaving these trails of data, because it means that in the future, history will no longer be written by the winners, and every one of us is a potential Anne Frank.
This week on the podcast, Cracked editors Jack O’Brien, Michael Swaim and Alex Schmidt are joined by one of the cofounders of OkCupid, Christian Rudder, to discuss his recent book, Dataclysm, and how the 21st century will be defined by the enormous amounts of data that can be found by digging through your virtual trash.
January 26, 2020
Freedom sucks…and that is why we have to defend it. Because our democracy involves doing a lot of stuff that takes energy, takes time, and lacks that Michael Bay Quality that only a surprise missile launch can provide. So on this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt and special guest Jason Pargin (who writes for Cracked as David Wong) are exploring the ways being afraid of everything (an easy action) can stop us from being free. Discover the decades-long tradition of some Americans wanting to give up everything in exchange for not needing to think, the centuries-long tradition of people inciting fake panics, and the reasonable ways you can help change things for the better.
January 19, 2020
How’s your local shopping mall doing? Have you checked on it lately? Swing by sometime, because its department store might’ve turned into a call center or a hospital or a go-kart track. On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by the one and only Kai Ryssdal (Marketplace, Make Me Smart) for a look at surprising, strange, and shocking stories from all over the U.S. economy. Discover an international pig flu, a 26-word statement that built the modern Internet, and more amazing ways cash is ruling everything around you. By the way, if you’re an American listener, you spent the past few years funding an astonishingly huge bailout. Surprise! Listen for details!
January 12, 2020
Movies, TV, gaming: three things that are theoretically a waste of time. Oh sure, they deliver value in the art sense, and comfort in the goofing-off sense. But what if they’re more valuable than that? What if consuming shows and playing video games (accidentally) turns people into real-life heroes? On this episode of The Cracked Podcast, Alex Schmidt is joined by comedians/writers Caitlin Gill and Alex Watt for a look at the surprising number of times that exact thing happened. They’ll explore stories of regular people who saved a life thanks to skills gained randomly from cartoons, sitcoms, ‘World Of Warcraft’, and more silly entertainment.