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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.

The message below was sent by NPR's Senior Vice President of News and Editorial Director Michael Oreskes to the NPR News staff on Nov. 9. On Saturday, New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan referred to it on her blog. Her post was headlined "The Tricky Terrain of Virtual Reality."

The reaction to the headline on Danielle Kurtzleben's Nov. 5 online article about Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump ("We Read Donald Trump's New Book So You Don't Have To") was swift—and in my mind, deserved, and not just because the phrase has become cliché.

In early July, The Guardian reported that Exxon Mobil Corp., "the world's biggest oil company, knew as early as 1981 of climate change – seven years before it became a public issue, according to a newly discovered email from one of the firm's own scientists. Despite this the firm spent millions over the next 27 years to promote climate denial."

NPR and WQXR, the New York City classical music station owned by New York Public Radio, said today they had identified 10 stories that included material plagiarized from 17 sources. The 10 stories had been posted jointly on the NPR Music and WQXR web sites since 2011, the most recent one on April 15. In addition, unattributed phrases in another story were caught last week, as it was being edited for publication. That story was not posted at NPR.org.

On Sept. 3, NPR's history dept. blog published an article with the headline "The 'Indian Cowboys' Of Florida," which looked at the ranching history of the Florida Native Americans known as Seminoles. The source of the information was Meredith M. Beatrice, the director of communications for the Florida Department of State (her title was not included in the piece).

Since we began KGOU's fall fundraising campaign we've heard from many listeners who love this new approach we're taking, and others who aren't so crazy about it.

Most listeners get it–that this is the way public radio is funded: listeners donate to the local station and the local station pays for its operations and sends some to the networks, NPR and the others, for the rights to carry network shows.

How do we get that message to listeners in a way that won't make them want to (gasp) listen to another station, or turn off the radio altogether?

This week's email brought a large number of complaints about Emily Harris's Oct. 13 All Things Considered report in which she interviewed the families of two Palestinian teenagers who were accused of attacking Israelis.

I apologize for that clickbait-y headline–as a public media connoisseur, you expect and deserve better. But I need your attention for an important announcement:

I'm still catching up on issues that were raised by listeners in recent weeks while I was traveling. Here's one: a question of whether NPR needs to put a disclosure on each and every story about climate change.

This post is not going to name the shooter who killed nine people at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Ore., last week and then took his own life. But that does not mean I believe NPR should not name him.

If you've been listening or reading this website for awhile, then you know that KGOU is actively raising money right now to fund our work into the future. You've heard or seen our pleas for you, the consumer, to invest in more of KGOU's service. Many of you have already answered, and if so, thank you.

But, being the curious type, you have questions. You might ask, "What are they going to spend my money on – beer and pizza? Office chairs with built-in massage? Solid gold paper clips? Limousines driving reporters to news stories?"

When Wednesday Morning Edition sports commentator Frank Deford was off the air for a couple weeks in June, several of his longtime admirers wrote my office with concern, to ask when he would be back. But the emails-- and tweets and a column from a rival news organization--weren't so generous following his appearance this week.

In my first post on this topic, I highlighted some of the concerns that NPR audience members have raised about the network's on-air and online coverage of climate change and the environment. This follow-up post gives my own views and talks about a couple potentially very positive new NPR initiatives.

This office fields listener and reader concerns about a wide range of issues, but, in the seven months I have been on the job, NPR's coverage of the environment and climate change has been among the top topics. It is clear that many in the audience expect NPR to be a leader covering climate news. And NPR should lead; as one of the nation's largest news sources it is only fitting that it devote serious time and attention to one of the most important and controversial issues of our day.

Need help finding an NPR story that you heard on air? Want to contact an NPR show, staff member or the NPR Ombudsman? Have books or music that you want to submit for a review? Itching to pitch a story idea?

Where Do You KGOU? Tell Us In Sound

Sep 3, 2015

Help us put a voice to the tens of thousands of listeners who tune in to KGOU each week. Share an audio "snapshot" the next time you're listening to KGOU, and get our new, limited edition T-shirt.

We've heard that many of you are multitasking when you're listening, whether on the radio or online, and we're curious to know what else you're doing. So take a minute to tell us about it – here's how:

NPR Podcasts Turn 10!

Aug 31, 2015

New technologies come with a big asterisk. We can never be sure whether they'll catch on and stick around for more than one or two seasons worth of holiday promotions. As a media organization, we're constantly investigating these new tools – and sometimes creating them – to make things better for people on the other side of the speakers or screens.

A picture of a gun pointed at a victim, from the perspective of the shooter. The sound of gunshots. A photo of the gunman. Listeners and readers wrote to the Ombudsman's office with questions and criticisms of NPR's editorial choices as it covered Wednesday's killing of two television journalists from WDBJ, the CBS affiliate in Roanoke, Va. A third person who was being interviewed was also shot and injured.

In recent weeks, listeners have written with many concerns about NPR's coverage of Planned Parenthood. Funding for the organization has received renewed political scrutiny following the drip-drip-drip release beginning in July of highly-edited sting videos, which critics say show organization employees selling fetal tissue; Planned Parenthood officials say the tissue has been donated, not sold.

When listeners aren't writing to NPR to comment on a story, they mostly just want to know what music was played between segments. We call those buttons or breaks or deadrolls, and they give a breath after reporting a tragedy, lighten the mood after you most definitely cried during StoryCorps, or seize a moment to be ridiculously cheeky. How could you not play Katy Perry's "Hot N Cold" following a story about why women shiver in the office?

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