National Public Radio
NPR as the organization is popularly known is the abbreviation for the National Public Radio. This organization is a non-profit membership media organization that is privately and publicly funded. It is a national syndicator to more than 800 public radio stations in the United States. Created in 1970, National Public Radio started off with Donald Quayle as the first president of the organization and 30 employees. It had 90 radio stations as charter members.
National Public Radio is an organization that distributes news programs and cultural programs but all the radio stations that it supports do not need to telecast all the programs that the organization produces. In most cases, the individual radio channels create their own programming content schedules by mixing telecasts of programs from National Public Radio and their rivals like American Public Media, Public Radio International and more. The radio programs are distributed using the Public Radio Satellite System, which also is managed by NR.
It is mandatory that all the member stations of National Public Radio are non-commercial or non-commercial educational radio stations. They also need to have at least 5 full time employees. The channel should operate at least 18 hours a day and it should not have been conceived merely for religious broadcasting or as a distance educational learning program.
The bulk of the revenue that National Public Radio receives is from programming fees, grants from businesses and foundations, contributions and sponsorships. About 50 percent of all revenue comes from the programming fee, reducing the load on grants and contributions. The contributions come in from air-pledge drives, corporate underwriting, local and state governments, educational institutions and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
National Public Radio does not carry any traditional radio commercials like other commercial radio channels. However, it does carry brief statements from major donors from time to time. These underwriting spots are governed by the FCC restrictions in addition to following truth-in-advertising laws.
The mission of National Public Radio is to create a more informed public. This is something that NPR has been doing with the help of partnerships with member stations. National Public Radio looks to provide people with a better understanding of the happenings around the world so that they have a better insight and appreciation of events, opinions, cultures and trends.
With the aim of achieving this mission, National Public Radio produces, acquires and distributes programming content that meet the highest level of public service in journalism. They believe that by providing good content via satellite interconnection for the entire public radio system, they are creating a human race that is better informed.
The vision statement that National Public Radio has, describes the aspirations that the company has for the future. It is today America's pre-eminent news institution and intends to remain so. They believe that it is their duty to inform the citizens of United States about the important news stories, events, and issues that are cropping up each day. They intend to lead the public radio domain towards newer ideas, formats and technology and by hiring the best talent available.
The team that works at National Public Radio intends to make the organization the "most relevant and trusted consumed news source in the United States". They also intend to expand the reach and relevance of the content that they produce to wider audiences and unlock the potential of national media.
In addition to that National Public Radio intends to do all this while ensuring the best practices and most professional and ethical means in the field. They also understand that newer business models shall need to be adapted over time so that they can continue to be relevant in the future. National Public Radio has a News Code of Ethics and Practices and News Social Media Guidelines that it adheres to at all times.
While National Public Radio was started in 1970, the roots of the company go as far back as the 1940's. The Federal Communications Commission allotted the lower end of the FM band for only non-commercial educational stations. This basically set the stage for expansion of major stations. Commercial radio started to see a decline with the advent of television. But public radio grew along with public television. The Public Broadcasting Act was signed by President Johnson in in 1967 and this led to the creation of the Corporation of Public Broadcasting. Johnson's vision was to ensure "the growth and development of non-commercial radio" and to create "programming that will be responsive to the interests of the people".
NPR was founded on February 26, 1970. The founding members were 90 charter stations that sourced national news from the company. The organization aired its first broadcast on April 1971 and covered the United States Senate hearing on the Vietnam War. The first weekly program "All Things Considered" was aired a month later. The premier news magazine "Morning Edition" was launched in 1979.
The satellite delivered radio distribution network was created in the 1980s. It was meant to support the 250 stations that were now affiliated to National Public Radio. Even though the organization suffered a major financial setback in 1983, it recovered and bounced back with better, stronger and more capable governance.
The 1990s saw a major interest in all kinds of news - local, national and international. This led to a growth in the distribution, programming and reach of the organization. Talk of the Nation was a talk show that was aired around the time of the Gulf War. This became a new format that the radio world was introduced to. The 1990s was also a decade when the programming of NPR went beyond the boundaries of the United States.
The events that occurred on September 11, 2001 were a turning point for National Public Radio. The focus shifted to high quality and contextual kind of programming. The company started to look at providing timely news for the US audience and for those living in other countries.
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