Why a New True Crime Podcast Contains No Crime At All

“Tiffany Dover is Dead*” is a gripping forensic investigation into how conspiracy theories spread

Jamie Cohen
5 min readApr 19, 2022

One day in April of 2020 it hit me: “Where did John go?”

About a month into the pandemic, I’d realized that one of my friends on Instagram just suddenly stopped posting. He was a consistent social media poster, uploading one or two grid posts a week and posting to his Instagram stories almost every hour. John, an American, worked as a tour guide in Italy and lived a spectacularly wonderful life and I vicariously enjoyed the Mediterranean views through his account. Then all of a sudden, it ended.

I grew concerned and wondered if he was ok. Did something happen? I messaged him — no reply.

At that moment, I could have fallen down a rabbit hole, assumed the worse, latched onto answers that fit my paranoia: did he get Covid? Deported? Arrested? All these assumptions existed only in my head.

My point is that when faced with the unknown, we often fill the blanks with confirmation bias, making up a story for something even when it is illogical and unconfirmed.

In the the new true crime podcast, Tiffany Dover is Dead*, NBC News disinformation reporter Brandy Zadrozny goes into…



Jamie Cohen

Digital culture expert and meme scholar. Cultural and Media Studies PhD. Internet studies educator: social good, civic engagement and digital literacies