NPR (Online News) media bias rating is Center.

Important Note: This media bias rating refers only to NPR's online written news content, NOT NPR radio nor NPR's editorial/opinion content, which AllSides rates separately.

NPR online news has a Center bias, though close to Lean Left.

Note that a Center bias does not necessarily mean a source is unbiased, neutral, or always reasonable. It simply means the source does not predictably publish opinions and content biased toward either side of the political spectrum. The bias of individual articles may vary.

In Dec. 2017, AllSides split its NPR media bias ratings into two pages: NPR Opinion/Editorial media bias and the page you are currently viewing, NPR online news (not radio content). This change was the result of a Dec. 2017 NPR Editorial Review in which we determined NPR's online news media bias differs significantly from its editorial/opinion page media bias.

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Feb. 2020 Blind Bias Survey

A February 2020 AllSides blind bias survey found that NPR online news content maintains a Center bias, though barely, and close to Lean Left. During a blind bias survey, people who hail from all sides of the political spectrum and a diverse array of ages and geographic locations rate the bias of content from a media outlet blindly, meaning all identifying branding and information is removed.

Our February 2020 survey found that on average, people who identified themselves as being Left, Lean Left or Center viewed NPR online news content as as Center. Those who identified themselves as Lean Right and Right see NPR online news as on the border of Center and Lean Left. The overall average response of all groups is Center, though close to the border line with Lean Left. After assessing the results of the blind bias survey, AllSides determined that Center is still the best bias rating for NPR online news content only.

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NPR Bias Incidents: June 2020 to Oct. 2020

In June 2020, AllSides documented a particular example of an NPR story that showed left bias and fake news, which NPR later corrected.

In Oct. 2020, NPR wrote on Twitter that it would not report on The New York Post's Hunter Biden story, which suggested Hunter Biden leveraged his connection to his father, Joe Biden (former Vice President and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate) to increase his pay from Burisma, a Ukrainian energy holdings company. NPR said they would not cover the story because "we don't want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories."

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August 2019: Editorial Review of NPR Online News Bias

Due to ongoing community feedback from users concerned NPR deserves a Lean Left bias rating, the multipartisan team at AllSides conducted an Editorial Review of NPR online news on August 28, 2019. We determined that NPR online news maintains a Center bias, while there is some indication that some of its pieces Lean Left. While some pieces may have a slight Lean Left bent, it is not frequent enough to warrant changing the NPR online news rating to Lean Left.

While AllSides believes NPR may be on the cusp of a Lean Left rating, we also noted its bias is not as overt as other media outlets AllSides rates Lean Left, such as The New York Times or The Washington Post. AllSides Media Bias Ratings are not determined relative to other outlets, but a small amount of consideration is given to the rest of the media landscape, particularly when assessing issues such as bias by omission — which stories an outlet is choosing to cover or not to cover.

Overall, the AllSides team agreed that NPR's online headlines do not insert bias and largely present the facts. NPR online news does not employ sensationalism or overt bias in either direction, and its reporting is mostly in a factual, objective style, not an interpretive style. Some team members noted NPR does not always choose to highlight good-faith conservative viewpoints, choosing to omit nuanced criticism and comments by those on the Right.

In alignment with past editorial reviews, such as the review AllSides conducted in Feb. 2019 (details below), the team found NPR online news does not focus coverage on hot-button topics favored by either side. For example, while many right-wing media outlets frequently focus on abortion, the Second Amendment, and free speech, and left-wing media outlets focus on healthcare, economic inequality, and racism, NPR online news does not favor or even routinely cover such controversial issues. NPR online news coverage focuses more on congressional and representative politics, elections, and world news.

AllSides frequently receives feedback about the NPR online news media bias rating. We believe most of this feedback is due to confusion from folks who believe we are rating NPR radio content, but we will continue to conduct research on this outlet.

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About NPR's Audience

A 2014 Pew Research study, "Where News Audiences Fit on the Political Spectrum," found that "the clear majority of [NPR's] audience (67%) is left-of-center, and it is a particularly popular source for consistent liberals, who make up 41% of its audience (compared with 16% of all respondents)." It's important to note that Pew's assessment of NPR's audience may have included those who also listen to its radio content and are not just consumers of its online news. As previously noted, this AllSides Media Bias Rating for NPR refers to its online news content only; we rate the bias of NPR's opinion content separately.

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Feb. 2019: Editorial Review

After releasing version 1 of the AllSides media bias chart, we received a lot of feedback from people who disagreed that NPR should be rated Center. On February 19, 2019, our team conducted an editorial review of NPR online news. We determined that NPR online news maintained a Center media bias rating.. There was perhaps a very slight left lean in NPR online news coverage overall.

The AllSides team, made up of people from all over the political bias spectrum, unanimously determined that NPR online news maintained a Center media bias. At the time, we found NPR online news did not predictably show coverage favoring left or right perspectives, and generally reported in a way that fairly showcased the perspectives of both the Left and the Right. NPR online news did not use emotionally charged or polarizing language, and maintained a relatively fair representation of issues. We found its reporting to be fact-based and not leaning left or right.

Our team noted that NPR did not give lots of coverage to current hot-button issues frequently seen in coverage on the Right — such as free speech, abortion, or the Second Amendment — and in that same vein, did not give lots of coverage to hot-button issues often covered by the Left — economic inequality, climate change, or social justice initiatives. Instead, it seemed to cover issues that were of equal concern to both sides, such as healthcare, immigration, and representative politics, such as Congress and election coverage.

Our team noted that NPR did a good job of ensuring Opinion pieces were not interspersed with News pieces.

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Dec. 2017: Editorial Review and Blind Bias Survey; AllSides Creates Separate Media Bias Ratings for NPR and NPR Editorial/Opinion

The AllSides NPR online news media bias rating had historically been Center, but data collected in surveys leading up to Dec. 2017 showed that NPR may slowly be inching farther Left. Because AllSides users had also expressed this belief through voting, AllSides decided to take a closer look.

In Dec. 2017, AllSides engaged in two reviews for NPR (learn more about how AllSides rates media bias). The first, a Blind Bias Survey, returned a Lean Left bias rating. Two previous blind surveys had resulted in Center ratings for NPR's online news media bias both times, though slightly towards Lean Left.

We followed up with an Editorial Review, in which the AllSides team looked at a composite of past research, media bias ratings and data, while also looking at NPR's full news coverage of that day. Considering that recent data had shown a slight move towards Lean Left, we examined both hard news pieces and op-eds (opinions pieces and editorials).

AllSides found that NPR News maintained a Center media bias, as it consistently showcased multiple sides of each story and refrained from biased language and images in its news articles. Its editorials, however, were slightly biased towards the Left.

With this in mind, AllSides separated NPR into two source pages: we created a new, separate page for NPR Opinion/Editorial. This bias rating applies to all online op-eds, analysis and fact checking content. The page you are currently viewing, NPR Online News, now represents a media bias rating for NPR's online news content only.

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AllSides Media Bias Ratings for NPR Prior to 2017

A 2005 UCLA study rated NPR’s Morning Edition (not based on the news section of the website) as having a Lean Left media bias, while the AllSides Media Bias Rating™ (based on the news section of the website) for NPR remained Center. A majority of over 5,000 community members agreed with the Center rating, but in a follow-up survey of 118 members who disagreed, NPR received an average bias score of 72.5, well within the range of a Lean Left media bias. An October 2013 AllSides Blind Survey rated NPR as Center by a narrow margin.

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About NPR

NPR is a multimedia news organization and radio program producer that serves as a national syndicator to a network of 950 public radio stations in the United States. Its mission is to work with member stations to create a more informed public, one challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and appreciation of events, ideas and cultures. NPR's flagships are two drive time news broadcasts, Morning Edition and the afternoon All Things Considered; both are carried by most NPR member stations, and are two of the most popular radio programs in the country.

NPR aims to be independent by generating revenue from fees it charges its member stations, as well as grants from foundations, contributions and sponsorships.

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Authors who have written for NPR (Online News)

Shannon Van, Vanessa Romo, Nathan Rott, Bill Chappell, Hanif Abdurraqib, Jacob Pinter, Chris Hagan , and 524 more. See full list. Chris Hagan, Carrie Johnson, Alison Kodjak, FRAFrancesca Paris, Sasha Ingber, Rob Stein, Tom Gjelten, Miles Parks, Laura Sydell, Alina Selyuk, Rebecca Hersher, Geoff Brumfiel, Tamara Keith, Dalia Mortada, Joe Nick Patoski, Nell Greenfieldboyce, Nina Totenberg, David Folkenflik, Philip Ewing, Jessica Taylor, Jeff Brady, Joel Rose, Laurel Wamsley, Rebecca Ellis, Brian Naylor, Tim Mak, Dan Mihalopoulos, Laura Pellicer, Dave DeWitt, Mark Bowden, Peter Overby, Hansi Lo Wang, Danny Goldberg, Robert A. Caro, James Doubek, Merrit Kennedy, Jonathan Lambert, Amanda Kolson Hurley, Nancy Isenberg, Dana Farrington, Matthew S. Schwartz, Shannon Dooling, Shannon Van Sant, Melinda Gates, Chuck Quirmbach, Yuki Noguchi, Brakkton Booker, Gabe Rosenberg, Serena McMahon, Wade Goodwyn, Vivien Goldman, Ani Difranco, Esther Honig, John Paul Stevens, Mara Liasson, Domenico Montanaro, C. M. Kushins, Katherine Eban, Phil Galewitz, Stephen Johnson, Josh Levin, Laura Barnett, Stacey Samuel, Michael Wolff, Bobby Allyn, Richard Gonzales, Barbara Campbell, Scott Horsley, Kelsey Snell, Jim Derogatis, Amy Scott, Gabriela Saldivia, Jim Acosta, Scott Neuman, Daniella Cheslow, Martin Kaste, Daniel Estrin, Meghan B. Kelly, Laney Ruckstuhl, Ryan Poppe, Andrew Blum, Joe Neel, Amita Kelly, Jenny Gathright, Clare Lombardo, Julie McCarthy, Mark Stryker, Ryan Lucas, Steve Inskeep, Alina Selyukh, Deirdre Walsh, James Comey, Pam Fessler, Frank Langfitt, Sarah McCammon, Michelle Andrews, Colin Dwyer, Brian Mann, Nick Castele, Emily Feng, Bob Woodward, Jan Swafford, Ayesha Rascoe, Danielle Kurtzleben, Alexander Tuerk, Brad Smith, David Welna, Alex Ross, Matthew Desmond, Hannah Allam, Debbie Elliott, Brandon Carter, @NinaTotenberg, Jim Mattis, Julie Hirschfeld Davis, Isabel Quintero, Mark Katkov, Carrie Fisher, Leila Fadel, Anna King, Bruce Springsteen, Sharon Weinberger, Anthony Christian Ocampo, Tim McDonnell, Stanley Crouch, Doreen McCallister, Franco Ordonez, Karen Grigsby Bates, Lena Dunham, Emma Bowman, Michele Kelemen, Paolo Zialcita, Adrian Florido, Andrew Flanagan, Meg Anderson, Guy M. Snodgrass, Greg Allen, Elton John, Jeff Goodell, Sena Jeter Naslund, Adam Minter, Jonathan Gould, Pamela Paul, Daniel Okrent, Eric Foner, Sarah Kuhn, Nate Chinen, Michael Walker, Jonathan Rosenberg, Nate Sloan, Kim Gordon, Amy Rig, Randy Roberts, Susan Fowler, Philip Kennicott, Jessica Simpson, Richard Feldman, Richard Rothstein, Bruce Holsinger, Viet Thanh, Liz Phair, Alicia Keys, Viv Albertine, Oliver Craske, Hunter S. Thompson, Sarah Frier, Jazz At Lincoln, Lulu Garcia, Ned Wharton, Otis Hart, Martha Bebinger, Milton Guevara, Krista Kapralos, Bob Carter, Samantha Raphelson, Stacey Vanek, Cardiff Garcia, Rachel Treisman, Bob Boilen, Ari Shapiro, Mano Sundaresan, Raina Douris, Kimberly Junod, Chad Campbell, Matt Kwong, Lars Gotrich, James Dawson, Ann Powers, Robert Leja, Stephen Thompson, Noel King, Victoria Whitley, Marisa Peñaloza, Marissa R. Moss, Tom Vitale, Lyndsey Mckenna, Frannie Kelley, Alex Ariff, Terry Gross, Kevin Whitehead, Chris Arnold, Laurel White, Ab O'Neill, Lauren Frayer, Josh Rogosin, Colin Marshall, David Greene, Vince Pearson, Simone Popperl, Lilly Quiroz, Will Stone, Greg Myre, Ian Stewart, Ken Tucker, Lena Waithe, Tom Dreisbach, Jim Zarroli, Sheila Mulrooney Eldred, Katya Cengel, Scott Simon, Jeffrey Pierre, Rund Abdelfatah, Quil Lawrence, Martin Johnson, Joe Palca, Ashish Valentine, Greg Rosalsky, Maia Stern, Allyson Mccabe, Matt Silver, John Burnett, Stephen Kallao, Jessie Scott, Stefanie Fernández, Lauren Onkey, Ashon Crawley, Tim Greiving, Alana Wise, Sacha Pfeiffer, Mallory Yu, Conrad Wilson, Kimberley Freda, Bob Allyn, Angela Kocherga, Abigail Censky, David Schaper, Patricia Meschino, Kat Lonsdorf, Laura Sullivan, Sarah Gonzalez, Rebecca Rosman, Andrew Limbong, Daoud Tyler, Ron Gonzalez, Jacob Goldstein, Camila Domonoske, Shannon Bond, Josh Jackson, Marissa Lorusso, Suraya Mohamed, Uri Berliner, Ethan Iverson, Rachel Martin, Phil Harrell, The Kid Mero, Desus Nice, Bo Ham, Anastasia Tsioulcas, Audie Cornish, Adam Harris, Sarah Geledi, Richard Harris, John Myers, Adedayo Akala, Ron Elving, Sam Gringlas, Jason King, Bobbi I. Booker, Barbara Sprunt, Marcus J. Moore, Lindsay Zoladz, Jon Hamilton, Kirk Siegler, Emily Vaughn, Christianna Silva, Tom Huizenga, Bruce Warren, Sasha Geffen, Simón Mejía, Asma Khalid, Andrea Hsu, Eleanor Beardsley, Sam Kesler, Avie Schneider, Juana Summers, Latesha Harris, Linda Diaz, Sam Briger, Andrew Chan, Betto Arcos, Petra Mayer, Ryan Benk, Adam 12, Christina Lee, Reese Oxner, Pien Huang, Sidney Madden, Rodney Carmichael, Steve Waksman, Tinbete Ermyas, Huo Jingnan, Felix Contreras, Allison Aubrey, Darien Carr, Annie Zaleski, Laina Dawes, Nickolai Hammar, Selena Simmons, Lara Downes, Sonari Glinton, Knar Bedian, Lloyd Schwartz, Ali Wong, Meaghan Garvey, Suzanne Nuyen, Jeff Lunden, Isabella Gomez, Lily Meyer, Noah Caldwell, Shannon J. Effinger, Stacy Buchanan, Mary Louise Kelly, Dave Blanchard, Rebecca Ramirez, Madeline K. Sofia, Thomas Lu, Bret Stetka, Tom Moon, Becky Sullivan, Jewly Hight, Dustin Jones, Frankie Graziano, Linda Holmes, Lauren Hodges, Esme Nicholson, Will Schube, Michel Martin, Cory Turner, Kristofor Husted, Adam Frank, Rob Schmitz, Robert Krulwich, Helen Thompson, John Ydstie, Talia Wiener, Christopher Dean Hopkins, Maanvi Singh, Leah Donnella, Etelka Lehoczky, Charles Aaron, Michaeleen Doucleff, Larry Kaplow, Denise Guerra, Peter Over, Elizabeth Kulas, Christopher Soto, Michael Sullivan, Fresh Air, Tana Weingartner, Jacob Ganz, Maura Johnston, Mandalit Del Barco, Vicki Barker, Maggie Penman, April Fulton, Brett Neely, Laurel Dalrymple, Christopher Joyce, Michaelangelo Matos, Bob Mondello, Martina Stewart, Windsor Johnson, Scott Detrow, Robin Hilton, Alva Noë, Erin Ross, Catherine Zhang, Cheryl Corley, Rachel Rood, Sam Sanders, Liyna Anwar, Heidi Glenn, Amy Held, Philip Reeves, Laura Wagner, Patty Wight, Anya Kamenetz, Susan Davis, Liane Hansen, Iman Smith, Aisha Harris, Claudio Sanchez, Poncie Rutsch, Tania Lombrozo, Angus Chen, Arnie Seipel, Neda Ula, Elissa Nadworny, Jackie Northam, Matt Ozug, Claire Harbage, Elise Hu, Eric Westervelt, Maquita Peters, Joanne Lu, Bonnie North, Caleb Scharf, Greta Jochem, Ailsa Chang, Kelly Moffitt, Ian Chillag, Michelle Mercer, Karen Grigs, Maureen Pao, Taylor Haney, Mark Jenkins, Murray Carpenter, Anthony Kuhn, Nurith Aizenman, Linda Poon, Alison Mccook, Danyel Smith, Mike Shuster, Elizabeth Blair, Eric Deggans, Alexis Arnold, Danny Hajek, Marc Silver, David Dye, Paul Chisholm, Tasneem Raja, Tori Whitley, Ted Robbins, Melody Schreiber, Tove Danovich, Ben Adler, Patti Neighmond, Dan Charles, Nate Hegyi, Gene Dem, Genevieve Valentine, Don Gonyea, Tom Bowman, Lisa Morehouse, Emily Friedman, Ella Taylor, Will Shortz, Taunya English, Cecilia Lei, Parth Shah, Cameron Jenkins, Rigoberto Hernandez, Kat Chow, Katherine Hobson, Janaki Challa, Ofeibea Quist, Sam Hoisington, Jenny Gold, Kelly Mcevers, Luke Runyon, Oliver Wang, Jon Marcus, Jason Fuller, Sarah Handel, Regina Bradley, Gavin Godfrey, Mark Memmott, Jacki Lyden, Haeryun Kang, Danielle Roth, Jud Esty, Marilyn Geewax, Alexis Diao, Alison Richards, Alix Spiegel, Alex Chadwick, Howard Berkes, Code Switch, Malaka Gharib, Davis Dunavin, Nancy Shute, Heidi De Marco, Maria Godoy, Alice Fordham, Brian Mcconnachie, Eric Weiner, Ashley Westerman, Nicole Hernandez, Tanya Ballard Brown, Julie Rovner, Melissa Block, Virginia Anderson, Emily Sohn, James Delahoussaye, Joanna Kakissis, Karen Castillo Farfán, Sylvia Poggioli, Tess Taylor, Jennifer Guerra, Wynne Davis, Rae Ellen Bichell, Jessica Deahl, Hannah Bloch, Nicole Werbeck, Tara Haelle, David Edelstein, Brian Mackey, Carrie Kahn, Marcie Sillman, Lib Berry, Peter Breslow, Joseph Shapiro, Jaclyn Diaz, Elizabeth Kramer, Trevor Smith See less.

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