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Aleks Krotoski asks if the digital world is robbing us of our voice. When we would rather text or message than speak to someone, are we still listening?

In this week's Digital Human, Aleks Krotoski asks if the digital world is robbing us of our voices. When we'd rather text or message than speak to someone, are we still listening?

We're in a golden age of creating and sharing pictures, video and text, but what about the spoken word? Podcasts bring global radio to our ears, but when it comes to talking amongst ourselves, we're choosing not to speak. What role does the voice play in the 21st century - and now that there are so many other options - is it still relevant?

Available now

30 minutes

Last on

Mon 14 Apr 2014 16:30

Music Played

  • Stereolab

    Blue Milk

    • Morvern Callar.
  • Boards of Canada

    White Cyclosa

    • Tomorrow's Harvest.
  • Irving Berlin

    Call Me Madam

  • Al Jolson

    Dirty hands, Dirty faces

  • Al Jolson

    Blue Skies

  • melodium


    • Quiet Noise Area.
  • Hauschka


    • Abandoned City.
  • Farben

    At The Golden Circle, Stockholm, Volume 1, 1965

Stan Alcorn

Stan Alcorn

Stan Alcorn is a multimedia journalist based in New York City. He reports regularly for NPR and WNYC, where he has focused on business and the New York tech scene.


He wrote an article for Digg called 'Is this thing on?' about why audio hasn't flourished online, and tells us why the artform needs to change for the digital age.

Professor Naomi Baron

Professor Naomi Baron

Naomi Baron is Professor of Linguistics and Executive Director of the Center for Teaching, Research & Learning at American University in Washington, DC. She is the author of eight books including Always On: Language in an Online and Mobile World.


Professor Baron explains why people are choosing not to use thier voices. 

Lucie Potter

Lucie Potter

Lucie Potter is a sound artist who creates public works of art created from human voices.  Her past works have used recorded first hand accounts and stories, field recordings for listening walks and radio programmes.


She tells us about the visceral power of the human voice.


Eric Wahlforss

Eric Wahlforss

Eric Wahlforss is founder and CTO of SoundCloud, the Web’s leading sound platform that gives users access to the world’s largest community of music and audio creators.


He tells us how the voice needs its own infrastructor to succeed in the digital world.

Scott Eyman

Scott Eyman is a film historian, author, and former book editor and art critic of "The Palm Beach Post. His books, include "John Wayne: The Life and Legend, (2014), and The Speed of Sound: Hollywood and the Talkie Revolution 1926-1930 (1997)  and with co-author Louis Giannetti, he published "Flashback: A Brief History of Film" (1986), now in its seventh edition.


Scott explains how the coming of voice changed cinematic story telling forever.

Margaret Ann Wolf Harris

Margaret Ann Wolf Harris

Margaret Ann Wolf Harris grew up never knowing her father's voice. On January 11th 1944, when she was just 17 months old, Sgt. Cody L. Wolf's plane was shot down over Germany. Though she had pictures and mementos of her father, a silence hung over his memory. But in 2013, the Baltimore Sun rebroadcast a Christmas recording of American troops stationed in England, and at the age of 71, Margaret Ann heard her father say her name for the first time.


  • Mon 14 Apr 2014 16:30

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