Sign covers 'radio' on NPR headquarters

Workers installing a new sign at NPR’s Washington D.C. headquarters this week unwittingly revived an online debate about the network’s name. A Los Angeles based NPR producer re-tweeted a photo of the sign work in progress and commented: “A picture tells a thousand words: ‘National Public Radio’ painted over by NPR at HQ.”

In fact, an NPR spokeswoman said the panel reading “National Public Radio” has been covered for several years. The new permanent sign has NPR's logo and address.

The network’s name has been something of a sore point since NPR quietly began re-branding itself by its platform-neutral initials. "NPR is more modern, streamlined," former CEO Vivian Schiller told the Washington Post last summer. The transition led to mild grumbling from some listeners and from some of NPR's member radio stations, who fear the network may de-emphasize its broadcast service in favor of digital platforms.

"National Public Radio" is covered by a sign that simply says NPR in this photo by "Weekend Edition" senior producer Ned Wharton.

Earlier: NPR’s next CEO faces 4 key challenges as staffers, stations, funding needs escalate and conflict || Disclosure: Adam Hochberg -- a Poynter Fellow -- is a former NPR correspondent.

Correction: This post originally suggested that "National Public Radio" was just now being covered by a sign; in fact, it's been covered for a while.


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