Here’s How I Make governmentality Happen

I get emails all the time asking how governmentality comes together: How do you keep track of your news sources? What microphones do you take to the field? What software do you use to edit the podcast?

I’m happy to share whatever I’ve learned. But for some reason Lifehacker hasn’t contacted me, so I thought I’d just put it all here.

The Hardware

At my desk, I work on a 27 inch iMac. On the road (and when I’m lazy), I turn to an early 2015 MacBook Pro 13 inch with Retina 2.7 GHz Intel Core i5. Phone? It’s an iPhone 6s Plus. Tablets seem to cycle in and out of this house, so I won’t bother listing them.

governmentality, The Site

Yep, I’m a Squarespace user. But there’s no way it would look as good as it does without the brilliant design work of Brigid Barrett who helped me keep it clean and modern.


I’m using Hindenburg Journalist Pro to produce the governmentality podcast. What I liked about it is that it’s audio editing software made by journalists for journalists — what a novel concept! They automated a bunch of the elements that would drive audioheads like Jad Abumrad insane, but it suits me just fine.

As far as microphones go, I have two Beyerdynamic M58s from Germany that I use in the field and for in-person, one-on-one interviews. And when I’m recording in my studio, I use an MXL 990 condenser mic. I plug these microphones into a Focusrite 18i8 audio interface for a cleaner sound. And when I’m out and about, I use a Zoom H5 four-track digital recorder.

And what do I do when I have to go mobile with everything? I put it in my Chrome Niko backpack. I liked this option a little more than other camera bags because it seemed a little more versatile for the variety of equipment I have to carry.

Oh, and why the camera bag at all? That’s because I do carry a DSLR for the rare occasions that I do need to take my own photos for a story (although I do, on occasion, enjoy taking pictures, too). It’s a Canon T3i.

The Newsletter

What else? MailChimp.

Reading and Organization

Slate first caught my attention with the headline, Everything Is a List. It’s true — everything is a list (or at least it is now) — and I can’t imagine staying organized without Workflowy anymore. This task manager can have as much detail as you could possibly want; each item in your list can have a list, infinitum. What sold Workflowy to me was not only its simplicity, but the ability to drag and drop tasks as priorities change, as they so often do.

When Google Reader shut down because nobody at the company thought it was sexy enough to manage, like lots of people, I nearly cried. But then Feedly came along. Well, actually, it was already in place, but it wasn’t quite like Google Reader. Now, it’s so, so much better than Reader ever was and this is how I stay on top of the news: by keeping up with hundreds of subscriptions across the internet.

But what happens once I read all those things? Where does it go? It goes in Evernote, silly.

Then there are the moments I need to not be near a digital device. And that’s when I turn to the many, many, many sizes of Moleskine notebooks. Sometimes the color varies, but it’s almost always cahier.

Mental Health Breaks