word matters NPR's standards and practices editor explains how and why we use the phrases we do.

On Thursday, balloons and flowers were in front of the Roanoke, Va., studios of WDBJ-TV. A day before, WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and WDBJ photojournalist Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast. Steve Helber/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Steve Helber/AP

The Sounds Of A Murder: News Or Not?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/435525235/435741167" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Kainaz Amaria/NPR

3 Things To Know About NPR's Policy Regarding Offensive Language

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/425971171/426145899" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Artist John Trumbull's Declaration of Independence. It can be seen in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol. /Library of Congress hide caption

toggle caption
/Library of Congress

Just A Few Important Words About The Declaration Of Independence

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/419243874/420019786" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Merriam-Webster added "eggcorn" to its dictionary this past week. An eggcorn is defined as "a word or phrase that sounds like and is mistakenly used in a seemingly logical or plausible way for another word or phrase." Nick Dewar/Corbis hide caption

toggle caption
Nick Dewar/Corbis

'Eggcorns': The Gaffes That Spread Like Wildflowers

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/410504851/410752456" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Near Valletta, Malta, on Thursday there was a funeral service for 24 of the hundreds of migrants who died earlier in the week when the ship they were on capsized and sank. Alessandra Tarantino/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Alessandra Tarantino/AP

There's A Sad Reason 'Migrants,' Not 'Immigrants,' Is The Word Being Used

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/401750087/402160084" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A stone memorial, surrounded by flowers, has been placed near the site in the French Alps where a Germanwings passenger jet crashed on Tuesday (March 24, 2015). Investigators believe the jet's co-pilot brought it down deliberately. Jeff Pachoud /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Jeff Pachoud /AFP/Getty Images

Germanwings Crash: 'Suicide' Doesn't Seem To Tell The Story

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/395798019/395966190" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Fighters from the self-declared Islamic State parade through Raqqa, Syria, in June 2014. Raqqa Media Center/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Raqqa Media Center/AP

There's A Reason We Say 'Self-Declared Islamic State'

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/385759554/387985050" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

In Paris late Wednesday, a woman held a pen in the air during a memorial. Hundreds gathered to show solidarity with the cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo, where gunmen killed 12 people. Thibault Camus/AP hide caption

toggle caption
Thibault Camus/AP

Why You're Not Seeing Those 'Charlie Hebdo' Cartoons

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/376098073/376300711" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Does it bother you if the sign says "or less?" Or do you think the fans of "or fewer" are fussbudgets? James Clark/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
James Clark/NPR

'Fewer' Or 'Less?' The Express Lane Language Debate

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/368712564/368931737" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript