NPR creates investigative team for breaking news

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NPR’s top news executive Nancy Barnes is moving forward with her plans to bolster investigative journalism at the network. 

NPR is recruiting for five positions on a breaking news investigation team that will work to uncover “significant and ground-breaking stories connected to the major news events of the day,” according to the job postings. The team will comprise three reporters, a producer and a supervising editor. 

“The goal here is to break more stories exclusive to NPR while delivering journalism that affects change by holding politicians, businesses, and the powerful to account,” Barnes said in an email to staff obtained by Current.

An anonymous donor gave NPR $1 million to support its investigative work, Barnes said in the email. 

At the Public Radio Program Directors conference in August, Barnes told PDs that she wants NPR to “break more original stories, have more distinct coverage lines that you might not find at the New York Times and the Washington Post.”

“Some days, we’re covering all the news that’s breaking and not uncovering a lot of news,” she said.

In her email to staff, Barnes said the network is pursuing a grant that would allow NPR to support data journalism at local stations. NPR would hire two data reporters/editors along with an editor with investigative experience. 

“Data is the backbone of many of our most important stories and we hope to build on NPR’s current efforts, while supporting our Member stations in their most important local stories — stories that often develop into national ones,” Barnes wrote.

One thought on “NPR creates investigative team for breaking news

  1. Have anonymously supported for last 20+ years with cash donations to ensure unbiased source of actual news and information. Not just a regurgitation of what media giants news and agenda reporting. Despite the issues, always provided all aspects, sides, views, expert insights into an issue. . Provide public with unbiased facts and information to make informed decisions for themselves. Why generously supported. Last 3 years, been a clear change in mission. Reduced donations from thousand over a year period to a few hundred accordingly. Hoping that new agenda a anomaly. 2020, hate to say, didn’t donate anything. Not that financially couldn’t, but pointedly clear, succumbed to profits and select few , in charge of what aired, for own personal agendas. Skewed information to own purpose. Not all sides of issues aired or reported. Be it social, political, economic, etc. Information actuqlly providing, censored now and manipulated on what gets aired. Not NPR I grew up with, supported and trusted.
    Actual investigative journalism goal, fresh change if actually do. Something supposed to be part of original mission and recieved public funds to ensure. In first place. Did exceptionally well until last few years. Slowly dropped and now only reiterate other media’s stories and add only what permotes personal agendas and not unbiased information. Donor has the means to start with a million dollar donation. Only hope is thier intent is to put NPR back on track, and not further directed and biased reporting to not fully inform public. Amount seems like a lot, but won’t last long unless used as intended. If it isn’t, few hired, get a big salary for doing nothing. Fear legal repercussions if actually follow through by investigating and reporting. If do job correctly, ride legal waves that follow. The facts reported, speak for themselves. And legal onslaught by caught, tactics done for generations. Bury in court. If legal dept. does job hired for, counteract with counter suit. Provide information, and ultimately profit from just by doing the right thing. As a media source, ability to air and get public support. So simple squash tactics employed by wealthy and corporations used against. So pick and chose what to pursue. Independent, unpaid mediator, should be part of to ensure what stories have most impact to public.

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