Meet The New 1995 Society Member: Robby Soave!
Congratulations to our newest members of our 1995 Society! Meet one of our three award winners this year: Robby Soave!
Robby is a senior editor at Reason and host of Rising on Hill TV. He enjoys writing about culture, politics, education policy, civil liberties, television, and video games. His work has also appeared in The New York Times, The Daily Beast, U.S. News & World Report, and The Detroit News.
He is the author of two books: Tech Panic: Why We Shouldn’t Fear Facebook and the Future (Threshold Editions, 2021) and Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump (All Points Books, 2019). The Guardian called Panic Attack “a methodical, earnest and often insightful work of reporting and analysis.” Former White House Press Secretary Dana Perino described Tech Panic as “a chat with a very smart friend who took the time to think all of these questions through—and who isn’t beholden to any one side.”
A Detroit native and a graduate of the University of Michigan, Soave now lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife, Carrie, and their two Yorkies, Caesar and Oliver. Read below to learn more about Robby!
What moment or opportunity in your life played the most significant part in getting you to where you are today? Without a doubt, my internship at Reason magazine immediately following college.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve overcome in your career so far? It’s not a unique challenge, but the constraints that social media companies have placed on news content over the past two years or so have been a major difficulty for those of us who primarily distribute on said platforms.
What piece of work or accomplishment are you most proud of? I’m most proud of being the first journalist to set the record straight on the Covington Catholic / Lincoln Memorial incident.
In your words, what motivates your belief in freedom? I was originally attracted to the ideas of liberty because leaving people alone to discover their own happiness seemed like the best way to organize society. I have yet to be presented with a better arrangement.
What do you believe is the greatest challenge facing America today? The incredible growth of the federal government has made the stakes of national elections much higher than they used to be. This has made U.S. society more justifiably paranoid, angry, and tribal—not great.
What is the next big goal or project you’re working on? How can the AF community help? I am chronicling the ways that the government’s war on misinformation and disinformation is harming free speech, perhaps in book form.
What advice do you have for those who want to advance liberty and make a difference in our society? Journalism is a great way to advance the cause of liberty, but if you’re going to get into the field, concentrate on writing and reporting skills; don’t set out to be a pundit.
What are some hobbies/side gigs/secret skills no one knows about? I’m a big gaming nerd; I play many, many board games, and I am also the dungeon master for two DC-area Dungeons & Dragons groups.
What are you watching/reading right now? I’ve been on an Agatha Christie kick lately; I just finished “Death on the Nile.” I’m currently reading “Traffic” by Ben Smith, which covers the rise and fall of Gawker, BuzzFeed, and The Huffington Post.
Last question: What does winning this award mean to you? I’m deeply honored. AF is a really terrific organization that supports and mentors talented young people who are pursuing careers advancing liberty. Being a part of this network has been tremendously helpful for me.