Fairness & Accuracy

NPR's Mideast Coverage

NPR pays an independent journalist, John Felton, to evaluate its Israeli-Palestinian coverage quarterly. We are debuting the reports on the Ombudsman site. —ACS

NPR's Mideast Coverage
Assessments of NPR's Israeli-Palestinian Coverage

In order to ensure that the public can thoroughly review NPR's coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, NPR has made several long-term commitments, including these:

— Every three months, NPR's coverage is thoroughly analyzed and that analysis is posted on NPR's public website. NPR has been doing this consistently for the last seven years; reports for the past two years are available at the bottom of this page.

— The criteria for inclusion in these reviews are that the piece be principally about or related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the parties to that conflict. The exceptions would be a discussion, like Weekend Edition Saturday's 'Week in Review,' where the conflict may have been a smaller section of the whole, but still was substantive (i.e., more than a passing reference) or stories like anti-Semitism in Europe, since the Israeli-European tensions are a legitimate part of the story.

— These reports differ from the Ombudsman's work because they are done by John Felton, whose evaluations of NPR's coverage are independent of NPR. His reports are submitted to the Ombudsman only for proofreading before posting. Felton's bio is below.

— NPR's Ombudsman, who serves as an independent advocate for listeners, also reviews Mideast coverage questions and concerns. The quarterly evaluations on this page do not preclude her own investigations of NPR's Middle East coverage. The Ombudsman section of our website explains how to forward issues and topics to her attention.

— NPR posts on its website every story related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict aired on NPR news programs or posted on NPR's web site. The archive does not include brief items which air on our newscasts (none of which are transcribed, for cost reasons). This page also includes blogs and news items by NPR staffers and reports from NPR's web partners (such as Foreign Policy magazine); however it does not include Associated Press stories that run on NPR.org. To review all stories related to the Israel-Palestinian conflict, click here.

For the overall Middle East page, click here.

— NPR is committed to accurate, fair, and balanced coverage of the Middle East. In particular, NPR believes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a subject of global importance and an issue that requires in-depth, ongoing coverage by NPR.

John Felton prepares the quarterly evaluations. He has covered international affairs and U.S. foreign policy for more than 30 years. His most recent book, The Contemporary Middle East: A Documentary History, was published by CQ Press in 2007.

A former foreign affairs reporter for Congressional Quarterly and foreign editor at NPR, he has been a freelance writer and editor since 1995. NPR pays him to conduct quarterly reviews of NPR's coverage of the Middle East. He submits his reports to the NPR Ombudsman.

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