Founder Jack O’Brien Joins HowStuffWorks to Launch Its New Comedy Division

Share Article

Leading podcast publisher to open new West Coast studios, led by O’Brien.

News Image

HowStuffWorks, a leading publisher of informative podcast, video and editorial content today announced that founder Jack O’Brien has joined the team to launch the company’s West Coast operations out of Los Angeles. O’Brien is tasked with HowStuffWorks’ expansion into comedy, a quickly growing podcast genre.

O’Brien joins HowStuffWorks after 11 years as founder and editor-in-chief of During his tenure, he cultivated the distinct, satirical voice that Cracked is known for, led creative hiring for the publication and hosted The Cracked Podcast. O’Brien’s unique experience makes him the ideal choice to lead HowStuffWorks’ west-coast growth and move into comedy.

“HowStuffWorks has been one of my favorite podcast creators for a long time -- Stuff You Should Know is actually the first podcast I ever listened to,” said Jack O’Brien, Creative Director & Head of Comedy at HowStuffWorks. “There’s a natural overlap between the voice I created at Cracked, and the voice Josh and Chuck have cultivated on Stuff You Should Know. Our new West Coast studios give us an opportunity to tap into Los Angeles’ growing community of young, comedic talent. I’m really excited to launch a series of new, creator-driven comedy brands, and couldn’t have picked a better partner to work with to do that.”

HowStuffWorks is excited to invest in comedy as the first step in expanding the types of new shows launching in the coming months. Podcasting has experienced significant growth in the last several years and has quickly become a mainstream medium known for the intimate connections that it creates between hosts and listeners. This intimacy lends itself particularly well to comedy, which is fast-growing genre within podcasting.

“We have grand plans for growing and expanding our audience and leadership position in the podcast space,” said Jason Hoch, Chief Content Officer at HowStuffWorks. “We started by bringing on creative geniuses from iconic brands and our move into comedy is the first of more new genres to come. So much of the HowStuffWorks listener base has grown up with us and we aren’t slowing down anytime soon.”

O’Brien’s hire comes on the heels of Mental Floss co-founders Will Pearson & Mangesh Hattikudur’s addition to the HowStuffWorks family and the launch of new podcast Part-Time Genius. Earlier this spring, HowStuffWorks debuted the premiere season of FoodStuff and released the second season of The Stuff of Life.

About HowStuffWorks
Founded in 1998, HowStuffWorks is a leading publisher of informative video, podcast and editorial content. The parent company of 14 leading brands including Stuff You Should Know, Stuff You Missed in History Class, Stuff Mom Never Told You, and Part-Time Genius, HowStuffWorks’ writers, editors, podcasters and video hosts share all the things they are most excited to learn about with highly-engaged fan-bases across multiple platforms, devices and distribution partners. With an expansive and award winning collection of audio podcasts and video series, HowStuffWorks reaches a network of nearly 30 million unique visitors a month, and is #3 in global downloads. For more information, visit

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Annie Betz
LaunchSquad for HowStuffWorks
+1 212 564-3665
Email >