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This space includes commentary from the NPR Ombudsman, Elizabeth Jensen, the public's representative to NPR who serves as an independent source regarding NPR's programming.

Behind the Stories features perspectives from the reporters, editors, and producers who create NPR's content, offering insights into how and why they do what they do. For this post, we heard from NPR Special Correspondent Melissa Block, who covered the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.

Welcome back from Pyeongchang! Any jet lag?

NPR's Smart Speaker Promos Prompt Smart Questions

Mar 9, 2018

In recent weeks, many listeners have noticed something new: NPR hosts urging them to tell their smart speaker to play NPR. It's a sign that NPR is now available and prominently featured as a leading news source on Amazon's Alexa, Apple's HomePod, Samsung's Bixby, Microsoft's Cortana, and Google Home. But the messages have confused some listeners and raised concerns from others about why NPR is seemingly promoting the technology, and whether it is being paid to do so.

Today, the NPR Board unanimously adopted a series of measures to help ensure that the Board's commitment to an inclusive and diverse workplace is reflected in the daily experiences of everyone at NPR.

The report of an independent two-month investigation into how NPR's management handled allegations of sexual harassment by Michael Oreskes, the former Senior Vice President of News who was forced to resign Nov.

Improving NPR's Workplace Culture

Feb 16, 2018

NPR's leadership is committed to addressing issues of sexual harassment and has taken immediate steps to improve NPR's work environment and our complaint process.

For the past three months NPR's Chief Operating Officer Loren Mayor has been meeting with groups of employees to hear their concerns and ask what NPR could be doing better to rebuild trust and improve workplace culture after revelations of sexual harassment forced us to reexamine our workplace. Supported by staff input, NPR has instituted several workplace improvement initiatives, including the following:

On Dec. 10, my office (as well as the NPR newsroom directly) received emails from a retired Bellingham, Wash., resident named Paul Vanderveen, requesting corrections to an NPR story.

My office gets requests for corrections nearly every week and normally we don't write about them. Occasional mistakes are a regrettable byproduct of journalism and it's more important that errors get corrected quickly, as I've found NPR usually does. But this one stood out, and seemed worth a closer look.

Updated Feb. 7 at 3:55 p.m. ET

Daniel Zwerdling, a longtime investigative correspondent with NPR, has retired after a tenure spanning nearly four decades. The network's announcement Tuesday coincided with published allegations of sexual harassment against the Peabody-winning journalist, including claims of unwanted kisses and inappropriate conversations.

Zwerdling, for his part, has publicly stated the allegations are false.

One Year Later With 1A's Joshua Johnson

Feb 6, 2018

In honor of 1A's first anniversary, NPR Extra caught up with Joshua Johnson about his experience hosting the show, navigating complex conversations, and where he and the team hope to take the program in 2018 and beyond.

It's time for our annual update on the racial, ethnic and gender diversity of the NPR newsroom.

NPR's Visuals Team, specifically the Video team, had a formidable showing at the White House News Photographers Association's "2018 Eyes of History: Multimedia Contest" over the weekend. According to the association's website, "The Eyes of History contests are held annually to select the best in visual journalism across still, video, and multimedia disciplines."

The NPR Visuals team racked up a total of 12 awards across the nine categories.

NPR's news operation is a team effort. But a newsroom can't abruptly lose its leader — as NPR did in November when Michael Oreskes resigned under pressure amid allegations of sexual harassment — and expect to bounce back quickly or easily.

Note to readers: this post uses profanity that may offend some.

Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits are back in the news, so complaints about NPR's use of the word "entitlements" to describe them are back on the rise.

NPR Host Robert Siegel Signs Off

Jan 5, 2018

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says the median number of years that American workers have been working for their current employer is a little over four.

I say that to acknowledge how unusual it is that I have been working at National Public Radio for a little over 40 years — 41, to be precise.

For the past 30 years, I've been doing the same job: hosting All Things Considered. And doing it very happily.

No one is more surprised by my tenure than I am.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit


Take a political year that lurched exhaustingly from major story to major story. Combine that with the newsroom year-end tradition of ranking the biggest stories of the year. What you got last week in NPR's case was a game of political brackets, a take-off on the March Madness college basketball tournament matchups pitting 64 teams against each other in a knockout competition, with people at home playing along by choosing who they think will win.


The entire world of NPR is at your command. With a few simple utterances, you can access all the latest news, podcasts, and discussions of the day.

As mass shootings have proliferated in this country, so has the debate over how much focus news organizations should put on the shooters versus the victims.

In 1988, NPR canceled its nearly decade-old Spanish-language weekly newsmagazine, Enfoque Nacional, citing lack of interest and funding. A Los Angeles Times article about the decision highlighted the controversy with the headline: "NPR Slammed for Canceling Program." In 1990, about 17.3 million people in the United States spoke Spanish at home.

Reporting is a process. One story often leads to another. On the rare occasion, more reporting calls an earlier story into question.