An Unexpected Story

For the past six months, the Audio Drama “How We Manage Stuff” has been developing a story about how the tech industry engages Washington, National Politics, and International Politics. It would be easy for them to follow the usual tropes and dive into satire but they’ve been trying to capture the reality of the way that this industry is fumbling forward. (While still trying to be funny.)

Part of the problem stems comes from an old attitude among the engineering and technology crowd. “We built it,” they claim, “so we should be able to say how the world uses it.” That crowd, the engineers and programmers and developers who make the technology, have a point. They have real insights that should help any group of people make use of their creation. However, they often miss a key point in making their claim. In any democratic political system, power goes to those who are able to build strong coalitions. If you can’t build such a group to support your claims, you will never hold the reins of power. And to date, the technical community has built it coalitions on flimsy and shifting bases.

The audio drama takes on the political role in an insightful and funny way. It concerns the mythical Tech Giant, Talking and Shopping (mash up of a social site and a retailer) and their efforts to claim power in the nation’s capital. The podcast presented here is a combination of their first 7 episodes, the scenes that introduce the players and starts the actions. It begins with the staff to the consulting group “How We Manage Stuff” meeting in the Library of Congress the day before the client is meant to arrive. Sulley, the head of the office, convenes the meeting.

Cast

  • Sahara Ale – Yasmin, the Attorney Advisor
  • Margaux Amie – Rachel D’Fino, aide to Senator Stassen; Senator Christine Stassen; Evelyne of T&S
  • Zoe Anastassiou – Faith of Beva’s Place; Waiter; Constance;
  • Debbon Ayer – Abby Alton, CEO of T&S
  • Ron Bianchi – The Ancient One; Waiter; Bashir, the Uber Driver; Roger, Social Media Expert
  • Geoffrey Grier – Fitz Morris of NTIA; Vinny of HWMS
  • Kit Kusenok – Ed Kowalski, CTO of T&S
  • Josh LaForce – Sulley Bowman, Director HWMS Washington Office
  • Noah Masur – Buckely Williams of Federation for Digital Future; Male Aide
  • Jake Minevich – Victor, the assistant; Chad Dockerly, from Technica Publica
  • Sarah Corbyn Woolf – Anna, once an Intern