Just like Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror and The LEGO Movie, the podcast series Serial became one of those pop culture moments that everyone you knew ordered you to consume. Everyone on social media ate up your precious bandwidth with their thoughts and feelings on the latest, surprising details to come out of each new episode and the only way you could remain relevant to their existence was to consume it and discuss it along with them.
Of course, there's a very good reason why these types of shows, movies and podcasts earn such glowing praise. They accomplish something that so much mindless media fails to even attempt: They make you feel emotions that are real and genuine.
So it makes perfect sense that the latest and biggest innovator in the art of podcasting should be part of the biggest podcasting convention in the country. Fort Worth's Podcast Movement announced that Serial host Sarah Koenig will close their first convention to what's sure to be a packed room of attentive ears.
The Podcast Movement, a massive gathering of famous podcasters, speakers and seminars on the digital radio arts, will feature Koenig at the tail end of their two day conference that kicks off on August 1 at the Omni Hotel & Conference Center in Fort Worth. Tickets for the conference will go on sale on February 2.
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Koenig got her start on NPR's This American Life and was a producer there for more than 10 years. Koenig and fellow producer Julie Snyder created Serial as a spinoff of the storytelling series that focuses on a single story throughout the season.
"And we won't know what happens at the end until we get there, not long before you get there with us," according to the "About" page on the Serial website.
The first season told the story of the grisly 1999 murder of 18-year-old Hae Min Lee and the subsequent conviction of her ex-boyfriend Adnan Masud Syed, who maintained his innocence following the first-degree murder conviction that earned him a life sentence. The podcast received scads of positive reviews, a massive audience and 40 million downloads as of December 23, 2014.
So, if you followed it religiously, you'll probably be heading to this talk in August. Just don't ask her who killed Hae. The rest of us listened to a dozen episodes on the journey to her answer.