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All Things Considered (ATC) is National Public Radio's flagship news program. It was the first news program on the network, and is broadcast live worldwide through several outlets. It and Morning Edition are the highest rated public radio programs.

Background

ATC programming combines news, analysis, commentary, interviews, and special features broadcast live daily from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time (20:00 to 23:00 UTC), and is re-fed with updates until 10 p.m. ET (02:00 UTC). Broadcasts run about 105 minutes with local content interspersed in between to complete two hours. ATC now airs on over 560 radio stations and reaches an audience of approximately 12 million listeners each weekday, making it the third most listened to radio program in the United States after The Rush Limbaugh Show and Morning Edition. ATC is co-hosted by Robert Siegel, Michele Norris and Melissa Block.

The first broadcast of All Things Considered was fed to about 90 radio stations on May 3, 1971, with host Robert Conley. The first story was about Washington, D.C.marker and the growing anti-Vietnam War protests taking place there. NPR chose to place its inaugural daily newscast at the afternoon commute timeslot instead of the morning, because many of its affiliates at that time did not sign on for the day until mid-morning or afterward. It was not until 1979, by which most affiliates had expanded their broadcast days to begin at 6 a.m. or earlier, that NPR premiered Morning Edition.

Weekend All Things Considered (WATC) is a one-hour version of the show that premiered in 1977, with host and NPR Founder Robert Conley, and is broadcast on Saturdays and Sundays. Guy Raz is the current host.

ATC was excluded from the NPR deal with Sirius Satellite Radio so as not to compete with local stations airing the show.

Format

The format is less rigid than that of Morning Edition, with a wider array of type and length of stories. The length of stories tends to be greater than Morning Edition, with some stories lasting for almost 23 minutes. Certain types of personal interest stories are almost always covered within this limit; those relating to hard news or entertainment tend to last the standard 15 minutes.

The program begins with the familiar Don Voegeli theme song under a one-minute billboard of the stories to be covered during the hour. Then the standard five-minute NPR newscast is delivered from one minute to six minutes past the hour. The newscast offers a cutaway at four after, allowing stations to cover the last 2.5 minutes with evening rush-hour news and traffic reports. For those stations that run the newscast untouched, a thirty-second music bed follows instead.

The first, or "A" segment, begins at 06:30 after the hour. It features important news stories, although not necessarily the most important news stories of the day. Often it is here that the most significant interviews or developing stories are placed. Segment A runs 12:28 in duration, and closes out at nineteen minutes after with a ninety-second station break.

At 20:30 past the hour, ATC picks back up with Segment B. This segment, which runs 7:48, features more news and analysis, and often contains lighter stories and commentary. Segment B breaks for the half-hour at 28:20 past. The program goes into a local break until half past.

At the bottom of the hour, ATC resumes with a "host return". In the thirty-second return, the host or hosts discuss what's coming up in the remaining half-hour and intro the news. 30:30 brings a four-minute newscast followed by a sixty-second local break.

Segment C kicks off at 35:30 past the hour, and runs 12:58. Long feature stories are heard here, or as many as four shorter stories or commentaries may be heard as well. The last four minutes of the second hour Segment C (beginning at 44:30) is a designated cutaway for stations to run local commentary or features. Segment C ends at 48:30 after the hour, and another ninety-second break ensues. Occasionally, the show will "break format" and place a long, 23-minute story in the "C" and "D" segments with no local break at all.

Segment D starts at 50:00 after, and concludes the hour. Unlike Morning Edition, there is no set format for this segment, although usually the second hour will contain an arts, culture, or lighter news story in this segment. Other times, hard news otherwise not fitting in the program may be placed here.

Stations receive a preliminary rundown before each broadcast (usually a few minutes before 4:00 p.m. Eastern) denoting the timing and placement of stories so they can schedule local content as appropriate. This rundown is updated as stories change until the feed ends at 10 p.m. ET. As with Morning Edition, two hours of content are scheduled for each program. After 6 p.m. Eastern, the feed repeats the earlier hours for the Midwest and West Coast, although information is updated through the evening as appropriate.

Awards

Major awards won by the show include the Ohio State Award, the Peabody Award, the Overseas Press Club Award, the DuPont Award, the American Women in Radio and Television Award and the Robert F. Kennedy Award. In 1993, the show was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame, the first public radio program to be given that honor.

Hosts

Weekday hosts



Weekend hosts



Commentators



Featured series

From time to time, NPR produces and distributes short series of radio pieces. Series that have aired during the show include:
  • "The Changing Face of America"
  • "Lost & Found Sound"
  • "The NPR 100" (stories behind 100 important 20th century American musical works)
  • "Prison Diaries"
  • "Teenage Diaries"
  • "The Yiddish Radio Project"
  • "This I Believe"
  • "In Character"
  • "Three Books"
  • "You Must Read This"


References

External links




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