Word of Mouth

Word of Mouth airs at 2 pm Monday through Thursday, weeknights at 9 pm, and noon on Sunday.

Word of Mouth is the sound of new ideas, hosted by Virginia Prescott, and produced by Taylor Quimby, Zach Nugent, and Logan Shannon. Our Senior Producer is Maureen McMurray. Check out a playlist of music used on the program on Spotify. You can leave us a message on the Word of Mouth Listener Line anytime. We reserve the right to use your message on the air: (603) 223-2448

Listen to this week's featured show:

Genre: 
Composer ID: 
5182ad00e1c8493049eeb9e7|5182acf6e1c8493049eeb9c0

Pages

Word of Mouth
1:32 pm
Tue June 11, 2013

How The Internet Is Responding To The NSA Story

Credit Richard Holt® via flickr Creative Commons

Privacy is a topic we’ve visited and revisited on this program, especially when it comes to the web community’s reaction to shifting policies on our social media and email accounts. Revelations made by former CIA and Booz Allen employee Edward Snowden about the National Security Agency’s sweeping electronic surveillance program could forever change the “privacy conversation.” Joining us with more on the internet’s reaction to the unfolding NSA story is Brady Carlson, our always-vigilant eye on social media and the world of the web.

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:13 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Looking For Love? Try The Internet. No, Really!

Credit AlexanderVorobiov via 500px Creative Commons license

A new study from the University of Chicago shows that couples who meet via online dating sites tend to have better relationships than couples who meet for the first time in person. Here to tell us more about these findings is Ingrid Wickelgren, editor with Scientific American MIND.  She wrote the article, “Does Finding Your Spouse Online Lead to a Stronger Marriage?”

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:06 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Will The Next 'Doctor Who' Be A Woman? A Whovian Weighs In

From the outside, Doctor Who has never been anything but strange. The BBC’s long-celebrated protagonist is a time-bending, space-traveling alien, whose adventures can, and have, taken him anywhere and anytime in the universe. He can also regenerate into a new body when he dies, a plot trick which has gifted the show a much longer than average life-span. For the past fifty years now, the doctor has been portrayed by no less than eleven, white, British men. Matt Smith, who plays the current incarnation of the Doctor, has announced that he plans to leave the series this winter. The question many Whovians are now asking is: should the next Doctor Who be played by a woman?

Mac Rogers is a Brooklyn based playwright and culture writer, who contributes to Slate’s “Doctor Who TV Club”. He spoke with Word of Mouth’s Zach Nugent about gender-bending the BBC series Doctor Who.

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:01 am
Tue June 11, 2013

The Fifth Amendment In The Digital Age

Credit kalavinka via flickr Creative Commons

A case in Wisconsin is testing the limits of the Fifth Amendment in the digital age. In January, the FBI seized 20 terabytes of hard drives from Jeffrey Feldman, a man accused possessing underage pornography – but could only decrypt 20% of it. Until last week, a federal court judge had placed the burden on the defendant to decrypt the rest or face charges of contempt. Last week, his attorney successfully argued an emergency motion to extend that deadline. She claims that asking Feldman to decrypt files that would be used against him in the case is a violation of his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. Declan McCullagh is chief political correspondent and senior writer for C-Net and has been following the story.

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:53 am
Mon June 10, 2013

It's Only Slow Food Until You Try To Eat It

Credit © Michelle Gienow

For many of us, rekindling a connection to our food means lingering a little longer in the organic produce section while trying to pick the perfect pepper. But the “hyper-local” and “slow food” movements have created a new demand for the old ways of connecting to food…food you can grow, catch, gather and even kill…D.I.Y. style. A wide range of workshops have cropped up all over the country that offer hands-on experience with identifying edibles in your own backyard. Our next guest took a decidedly more aggressive approach to connecting with his food.

Bill Heavey, editor at large for Field and Stream, is the author of a new book which chronicles his own “mis-adventures” in hunting and gathering: It’s Only Slow Food Until You Try to Eat It.

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:46 am
Mon June 10, 2013

The Neanderthal Mind

Cranial comparison between Modern Man and Neanderthal from the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
Credit Matt Celeskey via flickr Creative Commons

To call someone a Neanderthal is to liken one to the heavy browed, ape-like troglodytes we see in history books or movies, but were they more sophisticated?

Sophisticated might be stretching it a bit, but a debate has surfaced in the scientific community about whether Neanderthals had a more complex culture than previous thought, and maybe even the cognitive powers equal to anatomically modern humans of the time.

Journalist Marek Kohn’s has been following the debate, his article “The Neanderthal Mind” appeared in the latest issue of Aeon magazine. He says the story starts with a perforated shell some fifty thousand years ago.

Word of Mouth
9:44 am
Mon June 10, 2013

The Sad Truth About Student Loans: They're Not Really Loans

Credit Saint Huck via flickr Creative Commons

The quagmire that is student loan debt has finally surpassed credit card debt in America. We’ve heard a lot about what this level of debt means to college graduates, drop-outs and families but now we’re going to dig a little deeper into the “loan” part. What a student signs up for looks, feels and sounds like a loan…but doesn’t fine-print like a loan. Decisions made by congress in recent decades have rendered traditional loan safeguards such as bankruptcy filing, inaccessible to borrowers. David Dayen is a freelance writer and contributor to salon, where we found his article, “Your Student Loan Isn’t Really a Loan.”

Word of Mouth
9:51 am
Thu June 6, 2013

David Blistein Reading At Gibson's Bookstore

Back in March, we spoke with Vermont novelist David Blistein, about his latest book, David’s Inferno. The book is part memoir, part brain research, part rough guide to Dante’s Divine Comedy…and it’s also, surprisingly funny. David will read from the book and talk with the audience this evening, June 6, at Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord. He spoke with us about the razor thin-line between creativity and mania, and how ricocheting between those extremes was how he thrived for many years career as an ad agency executive. Here is the earlier conversation with David Blistein, the novelist, essayist, and blogger.

Read more
Word of Mouth
2:47 pm
Wed June 5, 2013

Jeopardy Champ Supercomputer "Watson" Has A New Job: Customer Service

Is this what Watson will look like when he (it?) takes your call?
Credit Rebecca Lavoie for NHPR

If you’ve ever felt like customer support from a call center is a hopeless case, there are now statistics to back that up. Forbes recently reported that fifty percent of calls that go through call centers go unresolved. IBM hopes to change that by putting their new star employee on the job - a super-computer named Watson. You remember Watson, right?


Read more
Word of Mouth
10:37 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Funspot's 15th Annual International Classic Video Game Tourney

Nick Lombardo - Long Island, NY
Logan Shannon

This past weekend, Funspot arcade in Laconia, New Hampshire, played host to the International Classic Video Game Tournament. Gamers from all over the world have been traveling to Funspot for the past 15 years to compete against each other, sometimes on video games that were born long before they were. For many, it's a chance to play rare games that they've only heard about. For others it's a great chance to connect with like-minded friends over a friendly, albeit competitive, game of Tapper.

The competition runs for four days as participants try to post the high score on each of the tournament games. Outside the cordoned-off area reserved for the tournament, the rest of Funspot's American Classic Arcade Museum is open to the public. Mixed in amongst the novice players, you're likely to see world record holders trying to beat their high scores in between their tournament play. I spoke to three gamers who have made the nostalgic trip to Funspot repeatedly, enticed by the pristine machines and the sense of camaraderie among the players.

Special thanks to Derek Janiak for his help wrangling the elusive video gamers in their natural habitat.

Read more
Word of Mouth
10:26 am
Wed June 5, 2013

What You Post On Facebook Could Impact Your Credit Score

Credit theseoduke via Flickr Creative Commons

We’ve found yet another reason to be wary of what you post on Facebook. Potential employers, college admissions officers and vigilant parents are among the entities that monitor the personal information, photos, and links we choose to share on social media.  Add to that list credit bureaus and payment processing companies wanting to verify identity and assess credit-worthiness. Neal Ungerleider is a reporter for Fast Company and someone we regularly turn to for the stranger side of business news. He recently reported on this new twist in the evolving social media story, and discussed it further with us.

Read more
Word of Mouth
10:11 am
Wed June 5, 2013

The New Literary Sensation Rising From The Street: Thug Lit

Credit lightplays via Flickr Creative Commons

Depending who you ask, the literary genre known as street lit began when Charles Dickens published Oliver Twist …or in 1969, when Iceberg Slim came out with Pimp. These gritty, slightly lurid, often violent stories focus on the underside of city life.

People like Wahida Clark, a New York Times best-selling author three times over, are becoming more and more successful as thug lit comes into its own. Other popular titles in the genre include Brother and the Dancer and The Ski Mask Way. Now, with several new imprints and tie-ins with the hip hop market, street lit is making a play for the mainstream market. Darren Sands is a New York based writer and a freelance reporter for the New York Observer, where he wrote an article called “Holler if You Read Me: African-American Writers -- and Readers – Fret Over the Future of Thug Lit.” We spoke with him about the state of thug lit and its rising popularity.

Read more
Word of Mouth
9:45 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Fatoumata Diawara Comes To New Hampshire

Credit Fatoumata Diawara, Nonesuch.com

West African singer-songwriter Fatoumata Diawara has a backstory not unlike many of today’s cosmopolitan Africans. She was born in Ivory Coast to parents from Mali and now lives in Paris. She’s a stage and film actress, singer, and songwriter, all of which has given her a world of experience which shines through on her 2011 solo album Fatou. The album plays to her roots, but retains an infectious pop sensibility. Fatoumata is performing next Thursday, June 13th at the music hall in Portsmouth. We spoke to her last year before her performance at Dartmouth, just after the release of the album Fatou which is also her nickname, reflecting the very personal nature of its songs and production.

Read more
Arts & Culture
1:22 pm
Tue June 4, 2013

The Audio Orchard For June

1.Postal Service, Brand New Colony

June 12, Bank of America Pavilion, Boston, MA

2.David Byrne & St. Vincent, I Should Watch TV

Read more
Word of Mouth
12:22 pm
Tue June 4, 2013

Tim Samaras Was Chasing More Than Just Tornadoes

A cloud-to-ground lightning strike severs the sky near Los Lunas, New Mexico. Tim Samaras and his crew chased the slow-moving storm cell until they ran out of road, and now can only watch as it moves on. New Mexico's sparse road system makes lightning chasing difficult. Far easier to navigate are the tight grids of farm roads crisscrossing the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles.
Credit © Carsten Peter Courtesy: National Geographic

Veteran storm chaser Tim Samaras was one of 14 people killed when tornadoes ripped through El Reno Oklahoma last Friday. Tim, his son Paul Samaras and their colleague, Carl Young, perished while trying to document the storm. Tornadoes weren’t the only elusive weather phenomenon Tim was chasing. Last summer, we spoke to him about a more painstaking quest…he spent six years and traveled tens of thousands of miles to try and capture a lightning strike in super-slow motion using a six-foot-tall, 1600 pound,  cold war-era camera, an endeavor profiled by National Geographic Magazine.

Read more

Pages