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Noel King. Photo: Sandy Honig/NPR

Vox Media has inked a deal with WNYC, a member station of NPR, to distribute its flagship podcast "Today, Explained" to public radio stations across the country beginning next year.

  • It's also poached Noel King, co-host of NPR's flagship show "Morning Edition," as editorial director and co-host of "Today Explained" with the podcast's current host Sean Rameswaram.

Why it matters: The partnership marks the first time Vox Media's content will regularly appear on the radio. Vox says the two companies will identify additional shows in its podcast portfolio to distribute via radio in the future.

  • Vox Media first experimented with radio distribution earlier this year when it distributed an hourlong special edition of its podcast "Unexplainable" across American Public Media.

Details: In her new role, King will help develop special series for the show and will do her own original reporting.

  • She and Rameswaram, who also serves as Vox Audio creative director, will share hosting duties while they both simultaneously pursue other long-term projects, including efforts to expand the show's presence to new platforms.

Between the lines: The deal is part of a larger effort by Vox Media to invest in third-party partnerships to grow the reach of its podcast network.

  • Earlier this month, the company said it acquired podcast studio "Criminal Productions."
  • Vox Media this year inked three deals to distribute podcasts that it doesn't produce including Waveform: The MKBHD Podcast, Longform and Gastropod. Vox manages sales, marketing and distribution for those shows.
  • In April, it acquired Preet Bharara's podcast company Cafe Studios.

The big picture: Podcast distribution deals between traditional publishers and radio companies are becoming more frequent because they're mutually beneficial.

  • Publisher podcasts can benefit from the broad reach of radio networks. And radio networks — particularly in public radio — can benefit from the free programming and younger audience demographics they get from podcasts.
  • The New York Times, for example, distributes its flagship podcast "The Daily" to listeners of American Public Radio. 

Be smart: King's departure marks the second prominent woman of color to leave a major hosting job at NPR's "Morning Edition." The New York Times hired Lourdes "Lulu" Garcia-Navarro in September, the former host of NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday and a former co-host of NPR's morning news podcast Up First.

What's next: King starts at Vox on Jan. 3, 2022.

Go deeper

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
Jan 11, 2022 - Science

Black hole eats a star

Artist's illustration of a black hole shredding a star. Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

A team of scientists using archival data has spotted a black hole shredding a star in deep space.

Why it matters: This kind of stellar sleuthing can be used to find more of these types of events and piece together the details of how galaxies evolve through time.

Updated 4 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Bomb cyclone prompts blizzard warnings from Virginia to Maine

Computer model projection showing the intense storm off of Cape Cod on Jan 29, 2022, with heavy snow and strong winds lashing the coastline. (Weatherbell.com)

Blizzard warnings are in effect for 11 million people from coastal Virginia to eastern Maine as a historic winter storm is set to slam the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast beginning Friday.

Why it matters: The storm will bring hazards ranging from zero visibility amid hurricane force wind gusts and heavy snow, to coastal flooding that will erode vulnerable beaches and threaten property from the Jersey shore to coastal Massachusetts.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

  1. Health: Contact tracing fizzles across America — New clues emerge on long COVID — Omicron is finally burning out — It's very difficult to get access to antiviral COVID treatments — Axios-Ipsos poll: Omicron's big numbersAnother wave of death — FDA limits use of Regeneron and Lilly antibody treatments.
  2. Vaccines: Pfizer begins clinical trial for Omicron-specific vaccine — The shifting definition of fully vaccinated.
  3. Politics: Virginia AG says public colleges can't mandate COVID vaccines —Alaska governor joins Texas lawsuit over National Guard vaccine mandate — Navy discharges 45 sailors for refusing vaccine — Spotify to remove Neil Young's music after his Joe Rogan ultimatum — White House: 60M households have ordered free COVID-19 rapid tests.
  4. World: U.K. to lift travel testing requirement for fully vaccinated — Beijing Olympic Committee lowers testing threshold ahead of Games.
  5. Variant tracker

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