NPR stands for National Public Radio which is a US based non-profit business media group that was established in February of 1970, after the passing of the Public Broadcasting Act. It was the successor of the National Educational Network and currently the organization’s main operation is located in 635 Massachusetts Avenue in Washington D.C. The National Public Radio group started with a membership of just 90 public radio stations which has expanded to over 700 stations in the United States.
National Public Radio’s main purpose is to make available programs that cover American culture and current events. Its pioneer broadcast covered the United States Senate hearings on the Vietnam War, which at the time was a major issue for social debate. Later two well-known NPR programs broadcasted by public radio stations are Morning Edition and All Things Considered. For six years running, both were recognized in the top five most well-liked US morning and evening programs and NPR was elected in 2005 as the “most trusted news source”.
Although National Public Radio programs are not exclusively carried by all radio stations, they do form part of the mixed programming distributed by most public radio stations. National Public Radio also has control of the Public Radio Satellite system that circulates its programming. The satellite system also makes available programmes from other sources such as Sirius XM Radio, American Public Media and Public Radio International.
National Public Radio is not only a production distribution centre; it is also the representative body for public radio interests before the American Congress. It also has the responsibility for training, promoting public radio programs together with managing these entities. Though the Company has had setbacks in the past its popularity has continued to grow in recent years.
In order to become a member of the syndicate, public radio stations must be non-commercial, educational in terms of their specified programming. They must also have at least five professionally employees working full-time, broadcasting a minimum of 18 hours per day. They should also not be exclusively supportive of any religious philosophy or educational pursuit. Once a station becomes a member they are to designate an Authorized Station Representative, who is given one vote at annual National Public Radio Board meetings.
Due to the fact that it is a non-profit organization, National Public Radio advertisements, called underwriting spots only come from important contributors like Allstate, Archer Daniels Midland and Merck. They do not however instigate the purchase of a particular product or service but provide general statements about the Company. Revenue for the National Public Radio is generated from such advertising as well as the dues from membership and sponsorship and benefiting from pass through grants from by the Corporation of Public Broadcasting.