As a journalist (or team of journalists) you know you have done well when other organizations start writing stories, doing interviews and making videos to add to or further your story.
It can be frustrating (especially when someone agrees to talk to the new interviewer and not you), but mostly it shows that you have had made waves.
This is how Sarah Koenig, and the rest of the team of Serial, must feel as newspapers run opinion pieces, Subreddits are created, a main character gives an exclusive to the The Intercept, and the website Funny or Die perfectly captures what I believe production of the final podcast was like.
If you have not yet heard the Serial podcast, then set aside a couple of hours for season one (and by that I mean about 12 hours over the course of a week). Listen to is while you do dishes, as you make dinner, for a bit before bed (then run about 45 minutes and episode) and follow the story of the death of Hae Min Lee in 1999 and the man, Adnan Syed, (a teenager at the time) who was convicted for her death. The thing is, as you hear the story what seems so straight forward, really isn’t.
There are days where I believe Adnan was unfairly convicted and others where I think he is exactly where he should be behind bars at Maryland Correctional Facility. It makes for addicting radio – the catchy theme music, which worms it’s way into your brain, doesn’t help break the addiction.
Just as a side note: As addicting as the radio program is – I could never imagine taking my interest and let it develop into a place where I would harass any of the people who shared their views and memories of that time. I learned that this has started to happen, while reading some of the other interviews being done (one person, the key witness Jay, who didn’t want to talk the Serial team). Apparently some people have started showing up at the house and taking pictures of the families. Not okay.
The series was initially launched on Oct. 3 – it’s “one story told week-by-week.” The entire thing, all 12 episodes, is online. It is a spinoff from the radio show This American Life on NPR.
I’ve finished the series and now all that is left to do is wait for the email telling me the second season has started.