Volitans Software

My Take on the Gruber-Benjamin-Talk Show Drama

Last Friday the Mac Podcasting community exploded with the news that John Gruber had taken his podcast, The Talk Show, to Mule Radio from 5b5. Gruber had being doing The Talk Show for several years and over 100 episodes with Dan Benjamin, which runs 5by5. Suddenly, without explanation or warning from either of them, he stops doing it with Dan, and starts on his own.

It was mysterious that there was no new episode in two weeks, but that happens sometimes. However, listening to the last episode, it got a little weird with Gruber after Dan asked about t-shirts and about next week. Looking back, it does seem like something was amiss.

So in the vacuum of information, people started speculating, a lot of that was on Twitter. Gruber nor Dan responded, but the operating of Mule Radio, Mike Monteiro, started mocking people for their feelings about the change. Gruber’s wife joined in. Eventually, Gruber did a little mocking of his own. However, since Mike is a known asshole, it kind of makes sense that Gruber, who is an asshole in his own right, goes to a place called Mule Radio. There are a couple of great blog posts/forums herehere, and here with people explaining their frustrations.

I still don’t understand how insulting long term fans of the Talk Show gets them to listen to the new show, as well as brings in new listeners. Yes, its a free service, but its paid by advertisers, and the audience is subjected to them, and may even use their services. So is not necessarily free, and regardless, the listeners deserve an explanation. MacDrifter disagrees, but I like the response on CandlerBlog here and here. We welcome these people in our lives- and talk about them to each other and even to the hosts. They can think we don’t deserve a response, but if they want our attention (and money via advertisers) they should give us one.

Gruber has continue to remain silent on the issue (except for passive-aggressive posts and sweets). I think he believes this will all just go away. But I disagree. He has already split the audience. I won’t listen to his new podcast. Its not because he left 5b5, its the way he did it. He provided to notification, to his audience, and it seems like to Dan as well. He and his cohorts insulted his audience. This is what he should have done, but instead, he did the exact opposite.

However, Dan finally did respond. He shows what a class act he is. He understands the audience and his responsibly. It does sound like Gruber broadsided Dan with the move. Dan took pains to wish Gruber well, but we can tell it hurts him to talk about it. He expected that since it was their show, they would retire together. And he said Gruber could have ended it at any time if he was unhappy. But I think Dan, like the rest of us, didn’t like how Gruber handled it. It just shows how sad Gruber is. Its all about him- screw the audience and anybody else who gets in his way. But what do you expect when he doesn’t even allow comments on his blow.

So The Talk Show is no longer on my podcast list. I’m going to be added some more 5by5 shows to it, Build and Analyze, and possibly back to work.





3 comments to “My Take on the Gruber-Benjamin-Talk Show Drama”

  1. John Dingleberry · May 26, 2012 · Permalink

    Gruber never gave me any sweets, you should consider yourself lucky and keep listening to his podcast. I also prefer my blow without comments or any other additives. What you consider to be an adequate response by Gruber is meaningless drivel. How you could expect Gruber, or any good writer, to write such a thing is beyond me. Subscribing to other 5by5 podcasts because you feel sorry for DB is condescending and pathetic. Seriously, you could tell it hurt DB to talk about the end of the Talk Show? Can you also tell how much it hurt me to read your drivel?

    • matt · May 29, 2012 · Permalink

      I’m really trying to parse your comment, since it seems your comment is full of drivel.

      Consider myself lucky? No, Gruber has to earn my attention- that’s how podcasts work. Its not meaningless drivel if a person cares about their fans and their listeners. Its a duty to properly inform them of changes. Its obvious Gruber does not care, and Dan does. Gruber may be a good writer, but he’s also an asshole, and it shows. Why should I listen to an asshole and support his show by listening to his ads (and buying their product).

      I’m subscribing to other 5b5 podcasts because I feel sorry for Dan- he’s a big boy and can take care of himself. I’m subscribing to other 5by5 podcasts because he cares about his listeners, and the other podcasts are awesome. Much better than Gruber’s (at least according to what I read about them). And yes, I could tell it hurt Dan. Its called using your ears and your brain.

      So maybe next time it hurts to read something (the word of the day for you seems to be drivel), maybe have a logical, reasoned post instead of insulting people.

  2. […] there has been more information revealed this week about the whole controversy which I posted about earlier. If you want a different summary, take a look […]