Foundering is an award-winning, serialized podcast from the journalists at Bloomberg Technology. Each season, Foundering brings you inside a different high-stakes drama from the technology industry, where its companies are wielding unprecedented capital and power.
Introducing: Breakthrough
On Breakthrough, a new series from the Prognosis podcast, we explore how the pandemic is changing our understanding of healthcare and medicine. We start with an examination of long Covid, a mysterious new illness that has stumped doctors attempting to treat symptoms that last for months and potentially years. It has changed the way hospitals work and forced healthcare officials to prepare for the next pandemic. Covid has also opened the door to revolutionary technology: messenger RNA vaccines. It’s a technology that never could have been proven so quickly outside the crucible of that first pandemic year, 2020, and it holds big implications for the future of medicine. Breakthrough launches on Oct. 19. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Oct 13
3 min
Season 2, Episode 6, The Showdown
In the summer of 2020, amid a pandemic, historic unemployment and racial unrest, President Donald Trump developed a bizarre obsession with TikTok. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo and her colleagues take you aboard Air Force One and into the surreal tit-for-tat fight between TikTok and one of the most powerful men in the world. Updated May 27, 2021 to reflect ByteDance CEO Zhang Yiming's decision to step down. Learn more about your ad-choices at
May 19
43 min
Season 2, Episode 5, Should We Be Worried About Our Data?
After Donald Trump is elected president, tensions between the United States and China escalate. Several American politicians, security experts and even Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg turn their attention toward TikTok. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo looks into the fundamental question facing TikTok: What user data does TikTok collect, and can that information wind up in the hands of the Chinese government? Learn more about your ad-choices at
May 12
42 min
Season 2, Episode 4, Are The Kids All Right?
While TikTok is known primarily as a breeding ground for funny memes, dance routines and lip-synching videos, there’s a dark side to TikTok that starts with the young children who populate the app. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo looks into the consequences of TikTok’s failure to safeguard its adolescent user base. Warning: This episode contains difficult and disturbing reporting, including stories about the sexual exploitation of minors. Learn more about your ad-choices at
May 5
34 min
Season 2, Episode 3, ‘I’ll Be Making Bank! Hopefully.’
TikTok has redefined American pop culture and upended the music industry, advertising and the economics of fame. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo examines TikTok’s hands-on approach with its creators and artists, minting a new generation of social media stars and positioning TikTok’s parent company as the first Chinese tech giant to come out with a truly global consumer app. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Apr 28
41 min
Season 2, Episode 2, The Silent Force from China
TikTok is powered by sophisticated artificial intelligence that predicts what users want to see next. This technology was developed at ByteDance, TikTok’s Chinese parent company and the most valuable startup in the world. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo explains how ByteDance founder and CEO Zhang Yiming fundamentally changed how a generation consumes media on their phones. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Apr 21
42 min
Season 2, Episode 1, An Epiphany on a Train
Alex Zhu, a Chinese tech entrepreneur, was seated on a train in Silicon Valley across from a group of teenagers. He watched as the kids were listening to music and making videos on their phones, and he decided to create an app that combined the two cultural obsessions. The resulting platform would become the social media powerhouse now known as TikTok. In this episode, reporter Shelly Banjo explains the genesis of Gen Z’s favorite app. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Apr 21
32 min
Coming Soon: A New Season of Foundering
TikTok emerged as the defining app of a generation: a cultural tastemaker, a musical hitmaker and a launchpad for a new breed of celebrity. But as the app reached over 2 billion downloads, TikTok became a victim of its own success, attracting sharp scrutiny from the world’s two most powerful countries. In this season of Foundering, Bloomberg Technology reporter Shelly Banjo tracks the rise of TikTok by taking listeners inside the mysterious Chinese mega-startup behind the phenomenon and the political hysteria that followed. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Apr 1
2 min
Introducing: Doubt
A few decades ago, nobody really questioned vaccines. They were viewed as a standard part of staying healthy and safe. Today, the number of people questioning vaccines risks prolonging a pandemic that has already killed hundreds of thousands of Americans. How we got to this moment didn’t start with the rollout of vaccines or in March 2020, or even with the election of Donald Trump. Our confidence in vaccines, often isn't even about vaccines. It’s about trust. And that trust has been eroding for a long time. Doubt, a new series from Bloomberg’s Prognosis podcast, looks at the forces that have been breaking down that trust. We'll trace the rise of vaccine skepticism in America to show how we got here — and where we’re going. Doubt launches on March 23. Subscribe to Prognosis today on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Mar 12
3 min
Season 1, Episode 7, In the End, There Was Adam
After WeWork's failed IPO, thousands of employees were laid off and the company teetered on the brink of collapse. Meanwhile, ousted CEO Adam Neumann flew to Israel with a generous exit package in hand. In this final episode of Foundering, reporter Ellen Huet surveys the wreckage of WeWork. Adam's executives and employees were asking themselves: Did Adam ever really believe in the values he preached? And what lessons will the world draw from WeWork's crash? Learn more about your ad-choices at
Jul 30, 2020
43 min
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