Under the Influence with Jo Piazza

Under the Influence with Jo Piazza

Under the Influence is a deep dive into the Mom Internet, a place haunted by aspirational marketing where it feels like every other mom is a social media influencer trying to sell you something, all while posed in white kitchens that never seem to get messy… with toddlers in cloth diapers that never ever leak; a bastion of carefully curated lives that are #blessed.And behind this airbrushed perfection is money, so much money. Billions and billions of dollars.Journalist and mom Jo Piazza looks at how we got here, what it all means and how the commodification of motherhood is driving mothers a little insane. And through it all she wonders whether or not she has what it takes to join the ranks of the momstagrammers, if she too can make thousands of dollars off beautiful photos of bath time, frolic-ing in fields of purple flowers and posing her newborn next to a beautiful latte.


October 2, 2023 43 mins

BUY Virginia's book Fat Talk: Parenting in the Age of Diet Culture here.


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Buy The Sicilian Inheritance here.


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Buy her book A Girl's Guide to Joining the Resistance.


And you can read The Atlantic story about the database here.


And you know you can always buy The Sicil...

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September 25, 2023 31 mins
Munchausen by Proxy has gotten a lot of attention lately with Patricia Arquette's star turn in the series The Act. MBP refers to when a caregiver abuses a child by pretending they are ill in order to get attention for themselves. With the rise and prevalence of social media there are more and more cases of Munchausen by Proxy and Munchausen syndrome happening in the digital world. There are cases of people pretending to be sick the...
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September 23, 2023 38 mins

You can download all of the Infamous episodes here: : https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/its-the-future-and-everybody-is-thin/id1652941051?i=1000628712174

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September 21, 2023 20 mins
Well we just had too much to say about Ballerina Farm to keep it to one episode. Her brand has become a mini empire and I look at it a little like Ree Drummond meets Laura Ingalls Wilder meets the personality of Emily in Paris. Prairie life nostalgia is currently big business and that's why I had to call our very own Wilder/Prairie Life expert Glynnis MacNicol to figure out why so many people have such strong feelings about this wo...
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September 18, 2023 32 mins
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September 14, 2023 10 mins
Quick update on the Ruby Franke story wherein everyone throws everyone else under the bus. Kevin Franke says he and Ruby were separated! He has been in "a fog" for the past year. Her sisters call her a narcisscist who should be put away forever and her sister-in-law just says Ruby IS NOT her cup of tea. My takeaway? Everyone in this story is awful in their own special awful way.
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September 11, 2023 37 mins

Thank you to Jessica Grose for joining me on today's adventure. BUY HER BOOK. She is a national treasure. Screaming on the Inside was just released in paperback.

We used a very brief clip from ABC News. Their coverage of this story is impeccable. You can read more here.

Transcripts of this episode are available to paid subscribers of my Substack, Over the Influence.

I mentioned my new book, The Sicilian Inheritance. It is available fo...

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Laura Ingalls Wilder probably couldn’t have imagined the multi-million dollar media empire that would emerge from her books. From the television show to prairie chic dresses to dolls to tin cups bearing her name, Laura is a brand, a business and, dare we say it, an influencer. Her stories have spawned industries large and small, both directly and indirectly for nearly a century. In this very special episode from the new podcast, Wi...

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September 12, 2022 36 mins

But it is coming. We decided that maybe Jo's birthday isn't the most impactful day for women to shut down the Internet and truth be told we also got cold feet since we've seen a lot of failed internet strikes this summer. But don't worry, we picked a new day for all of us to shut it the f*ck down. In the meantime Jo did a guest appearance on Bridget Todd's podcast "There Are No Girls on the Internet" talking about a strange corner ...

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July 14, 2022 56 mins

The social media influencer has officially replaced the plucky girl journalist as the heroine of choice in women's fiction. The latest and most hilarious example of this is Jenny Mollen's new novel City of Likes, a wickedly funny story about a woman just like us who gets sucked into the maddening web of a mom influencer. Jo got to hop on Jenny's podcast "Third Wheel" this week to chat all about influencers, female friendship, the a...

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July 9, 2022 4 mins

Jo and Glynnis are making a new show and they need your help...

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Holly Frey, host of Stuff You Missed in History Class, sits down with Kris McDaniel and Andi Gordon, two winners of Seneca Women to Hear: Search for the Next Great Female Podcasters

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As women’s rights are eroding in the United States, our Women’s Day Off (the Internet) is becoming increasingly necessary. While we plan it, we take one more look at Iceland as a model for how to build a better society for everyone and particularly for women. Luckily we don’t have to go too far back this time. We can look at the women who are there right now–specifically Iceland’s first lady, Eliza Reid. In her book, Secrets of the...

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April 14, 2022 42 mins

Prepare your flux capacitor because we’re going back to the future. In the final episode of Season 2, Jo talks to experts in social media to predict what’s to come in the influencer world. Right now, social media could be compared to the Wild West: unregulated, unpredictable, and quite frankly, unfair to a lot of people. But luckily, with the help of some incredible women, influencers and consumers are starting to fight back. This ...

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April 7, 2022 37 mins

These days it seems like everyone’s houses look remarkably similar. White kitchens, brushed brass accessories, exposed beams and all the shiplap. Why, you ask? Because we are all under the influence of design influencers. These people log on to Instagram every day and show you, yes you, how to take your older home and make it look newish, modern, but still cozy and old-timey. In a lot of ways this has been a revolutionary and wonde...

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March 31, 2022 33 mins

There truly is an influencer for everything! After spending a week in the hospital when her son got a concussion (don’t worry, everyone is ok), Jo left with a glaring realization: Rule 35 even applies to the medical industry. The nurses in the ICU revealed that they all follow nurse influencers, even post on Instagram during their breaks, and some have over a million followers. But nurse influencing isn't all scrubs sponsorships. C...

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March 24, 2022 45 mins

Influencers pop up where women need them most. They create a space to discuss taboo topics and provide resources when social structures fail us. Fertility is one of those topics, and fertility influencers have a large community of women flocking to them for answers, advice, and support. But not all women feel the same about this content. Are fertility influencers good? They destigmatize the topic and offer free information for an o...

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March 17, 2022 41 mins

It is nearly impossible to find a therapist that is covered by insurance, doesn’t have a waiting list, or even just returns your phone calls. Nowadays, we tend to rely more on people we know through social media to provide us with the alleviation of our mental struggles rather than traditional paths such as face-to-face therapy. What are the dangers of this? Being diagnosed by unlicensed advice givers? Being given recommendations f...

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Last week we dove down the rabbit hole of mental health Instagram. We're all in the midst of a mental health crisis right now and frankly we could all use a little help. While social media is often a major contributing factor, if not the source, of these mental health problems, there is also the flipside: comfort creators. These are the people who use social media to post content that you turn to when you are feeling down and need ...

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