Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who works with NPR's Morning Edition and Digital Media group. In addition to coordinating Web features, he frequently contributes to NPR's blogs, from The Two Way and All Tech Considered to The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to leading the London 2012 Olympics blog, The Torch. His assignments have included being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road, as well as establishing the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR.org.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, the site won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell trains both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" — promoting more collaboration between departments. Other shows he has worked with include All Things Considered, Fresh Air, and Talk of the Nation.

Prior to joining NPR in late 2003, Chappell worked on the Assignment Desk at CNN International, handling coverage in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America, and coordinating CNN's pool coverage out of Qatar.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, as well as editing and producing stories for CNN.com's features division. He also worked at the network's video and research library.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

From 2002-2003, Chappell served as editor-in-chief of The Trans-Atlantic Journal, a business and lifestyle monthly geared for expatriate Europeans working and living in the United States.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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The Two-Way
11:22 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Reports: Clippers Owner Sterling Agrees To Sell Team

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has reportedly agreed to sell the team, allowing his wife, Shelly, to broker a deal. They're seen here at a 2012 game.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 3:19 pm

Donald Sterling, the Los Angeles Clippers owner who has been banned for life by the NBA for making racist remarks, has agreed to sell the team, according to reports. Both ESPN and TMZ say that Sterling will allow his wife, Shelly, to negotiate the deal.

Sterling "has signed the Los Angeles Clippers over to his wife," ABC News says, citing a source "close to the team."

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The Two-Way
10:28 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Tonight's New 'Giraffes' Meteor Shower Could Be A Great One

A map from NASA predicts the peak viewing areas and times for the Camelopardalids meteor shower Friday night and early Saturday.
Danielle Moser NASA

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 12:22 pm

An all-new meteor shower makes its debut tonight, and astronomers say it could put on a show starting as early as 10:30 p.m. ET Friday and peaking early Saturday. Called the Camelopardalids, the shower is named after the giraffe constellation. It's expected to be visible in nearly all of the U.S., if skies are clear.

"No one has seen it before," NASA says, "but the shower could put on a show that would rival the prolific Perseid meteor shower in August."

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The Two-Way
7:28 am
Fri May 23, 2014

VIDEO: Baby Falls From Ledge, Is Caught By Man In Street

Men watch as a baby teeters on a ledge in China earlier this week. The infant fell — and was safely caught, making his rescuers into heroes in Chinese social media.
YouTube

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 10:24 am

All he had were his bare hands and one chance. But a man successfully caught an infant who fell from a second-floor apartment's window in southern China this week, making him a hero in Chinese social media after the feat was caught on a surveillance camera video.

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The Two-Way
6:33 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Canada Loses Fight Against EU Ban On Seal Products

The World Trade Organization has maintained the EU's ban on products from Canada's seal hunt. Earlier this year, activists from PETA simulated slaughtering a seal in a protest at the Canadian Consulate in Los Angeles.
Joe Klamar AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 9:41 am

The World Trade Organization has rejected Canada's appeal of a ban that keeps pelts and other products from the country's seal hunt from being imported into the European Union. The ban was instituted on moral grounds, the EU says.

From Toronto, Dan Karpenchuk reports for our Newscast unit:

"The WTO decision upheld a previous ruling that the European Union ban is necessary to protect public morals regarding animal welfare, meaning that concerns about animal welfare can override commercial interests.

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The Two-Way
6:00 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Mortar Attack Hits Election Rally In Syria, Killing 21

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 11:16 am

A campaign rally for Syria's President Bashar Assad was hit by mortar fire Thursday evening, as rebels struck the event in the southern city of Daraa. At least 21 people died in the attack, which comes weeks before Syria's presidential election.

From Beirut, Alison Meuse reports for our Newscast unit:

"Mortar fire slammed into a pro-Assad electoral tent. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 21 people were killed in the attack. The dead included a child and six loyalist militiamen.

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The Two-Way
5:37 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Thai Military Detains Ousted Prime Minister, Bans Negative Press

Thai soldiers patrol on a scooter Friday near the Democracy Monument in Bangkok. Thailand's ruling military summoned leaders of the ousted government to meetings today. Restrictions on TV broadcasts have led Thai citizens to ask for more variety.
Apichart Weerawong AP

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 10:21 am

One day after staging a coup, Thailand's military summoned leaders of the ousted government and other political figures to a meeting Friday. More than 150 people were ordered to convene at the Royal Thai Army auditorium — or risk arrest and possible charges.

Update at 10:30 a.m. ET: Ousted PM Yingluck Detained

Thailand's army has detained deposed Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra after holding meetings with her and other politicians. She has reportedly been taken to an army base, along with members of her family who were also in the government.

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The Two-Way
10:40 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Too Beaucoup: France's New Trains Are Wider Than Its Platforms

A SNCF Regional Express Train is seen at Hazebrouck's train station in northern France on Thursday. France's train operators admit they made a mistake in ordering new trains that will require millions of dollars to modify station platforms.
Philippe Huguen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 2:24 pm

Some 2,000 new trains that were meant to help France expand its regional rail network are instead causing headaches and embarrassment, as officials have been forced to explain why the trains aren't compatible with hundreds of station platforms. The new trains are just a few centimeters too wide to fit.

The country's rail operators say they're spending millions of dollars to modify platforms to accommodate the new trains, which cost billions of dollars. A French newspaper reported on the mix-up Tuesday, saying the platforms were too narrow for the trains to pass through.

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The Two-Way
9:25 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Russia, China Block U.N. Move To Investigate War Crimes In Syria

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 3:41 pm

A U.N. Security Council resolution that calls for the International Criminal Court to investigate war crimes in Syria has failed, after Russia and China voted against the measure Thursday.

The resolution seeking accountability for wartime atrocities was introduced by France and had the backing of the U.S.

For our Newscast unit, NPR's Michele Kelemen reports:

"Although more than 60 countries supported the resolution, Russia dismissed the vote as a publicity stunt , once again shielding Syrian leader Bashar al Assad's regime.

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The Two-Way
8:53 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Norman Rockwell Painting 'The Rookie' Sells For $22.5 Million

Norman Rockwell's The Rookie, seen here on display in 2005, sold at auction for $22.5 million Thursday.
Chitose Suzuki AP

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 12:27 pm

Norman Rockwell's The Rookie has sold for $22.5 million at auction Thursday. The 1957 painting of baseball players in a locker room was sold by Christie's auction house — heady heights for a work that first appeared on a magazine that sold for 15 cents.

Update at 12:50 p.m. The Final Price

While the "hammer price" of the Rockwell painting was $20 million, Christie's says the painting's final price is $22,565,000, reflecting a buyer's premium. We've updated this post to reflect the auction house's final calculation.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Thu May 22, 2014

NATO Says It Sees 'Limited' Russian Troop Activity Near Ukraine

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 10:01 am

Earlier this week, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced he was pulling his country's troops back from its border with Ukraine. Thursday, NATO officials said they're seeing signs Russia's troops might withdraw, although many soldiers remain near the border.

NATO's leader reports seeing "limited Russian troop activity" close to the border, which could suggest "some of these forces are preparing to withdraw."

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Ukrainian Soldiers Killed In Attack By Separatists

Ukrainian soldiers inspect the site of a gunfight near the village of Blahodatne in eastern Ukraine Thursday. At least 11 Ukrainian troops were killed and about 30 others were wounded when Pro-Russians attacked a military checkpoint.
Ivan Sekretarev AP

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 12:44 pm

Pro-Russian separatists attacked a military checkpoint in eastern Ukraine on Thursday, killing at least 13 soldiers and wounding about 30, according to Ukraine's acting prime minister. The country is preparing to hold national elections on Sunday.

A separatist commander told The Associated Press that one of his men also died.

The attack took place near the village of Blahodatne in Donetsk, one of two main areas in eastern Ukraine where separatists say they want to break away from the country and its interim government.

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The Two-Way
5:53 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Coup In Thailand: Military Seizes Control Of Country

Thai soldiers patrol after army chief Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha announced that the armed forces were seizing power after months of political turmoil.
Pornchai Kittiwongsakul AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 9:37 am

Thailand's army is now running the country. Two days after declaring martial law — and saying it wasn't staging a coup — the military has changed its mind, Thailand's army chief says.

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The Two-Way
5:06 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Attack On Street Market In Northwest China Kills 31

A photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency shows police standing guard near a blast site in downtown Urumqi. Officials say 31 people died in the attack.
Cao Zhiheng AP

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 11:45 am

A coordinated attack on an outdoor market in northwest China has left 31 people dead and dozens wounded, prompting promises of a vigorous government response. Bombs and cars were used to inflict damage on people at the market.

The Chinese government called the early morning attack in Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang region, a "serious violent terrorist incident of a particularly vile nature," according to The Associated Press. Previous violent attacks have been blamed on the area's Muslim Uighur minority.

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The Two-Way
11:23 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Saying It Was Hacked, EBay Urges Users To Change Passwords

Hackers broke into a database containing customer information, auction site eBay said Wednesday. The company is based in San Jose, Calif.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 6:20 pm

Online marketplace eBay says it was the target of a cyberattack in which hackers accessed a database of its encrypted passwords. The auction site says no financial data were revealed — but it's urging its users to update the passwords on their accounts.

EBay says that it hasn't seen any sign of fraudulent activity since the problem was first detected "about two weeks ago." It also said that it stores financial data and customer records in different places and that accounts of its direct-payment subsidiary, PayPal, were not affected by the data breach.

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The Two-Way
10:21 am
Wed May 21, 2014

City Nixes Move To Outlaw Bullying Up To Age 25

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 5:16 pm

A bill making it a misdemeanor crime to bully anyone from kindergarten age up to 25 years old failed in Carson, Calif., last night, despite receiving unanimous support when the City Council held an initial vote earlier this month. But in its final vote Tuesday, the council axed the measure, which would have been a first for California.

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The Two-Way
9:34 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Obama: People 'Will Be Held Accountable' For Veterans Affairs Problems

President Obama addresses the growing furor over allegations of misconduct at the Department of Veterans Affairs, on Wednesday.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 4:23 pm

Anybody found to have manipulated or falsified Veterans Affairs records "will be held accountable," President Obama said Wednesday. The president condemned the reported widespread problems at the VA, defending Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki.

Obama spoke after he and Shinseki met in the Oval Office Wednesday morning with White House deputy chief of staff Rob Nabors, who since last week has been detailed to work with the VA. Neither of those men attended the president's news conference.

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The Two-Way
8:29 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Japanese School Says It Won't Be Kinki Anymore

An image of the Kinki University website. The school plans to change its name, citing possible misunderstandings by English speakers.
Kinki University

In an effort to broaden its international appeal, a Japanese college is phasing out its titter-inducing name. Osaka's Kinki University is named for its home region in south-central Japan. But school officials say the name is distracting; they note that foreigners who attend conferences there often make jokes about their visit to the Kinki school.

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The Two-Way
7:07 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Alito Halts Missouri Execution; Supreme Court To Look At Case

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 2:31 pm

The Supreme Court will review Missouri's plans to execute Russell Bucklew Wednesday, after Justice Samuel Alito granted a stay of Bucklew's execution late Tuesday night. The inmate has a rare medical condition that his attorneys say makes it likely that a lethal injection could go wrong.

Alito issued his order after a flurry of court actions in the hours leading up to Bucklew's execution, which had been scheduled for just after midnight. An 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel suspended his execution Tuesday, but that order was later reversed by the full court.

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The Two-Way
6:20 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Where Are The World's Positive Vibes?

The kings of positive feelings: Paraguay's citizens were found to have the most positive things to say about their lives, according to a recent poll. Here, soccer fans cheer for Paraguay's Olimpia team last year.
Nelson Antoine AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 12:22 pm

The world, as you've no doubt noticed, has its problems. But some folks seem to be dealing with them pretty well, according to poll results released Wednesday. Countries in Latin America dominated the top of Gallup's "positive experience index," while Syria set an all-time low.

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The Two-Way
5:08 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Book News: Ray Bradbury's House Is Up For Sale

The Los Angeles house where writer Ray Bradbury and his wife lived is now for sale, at nearly $1.5 million. The Fahrenheit 451 author is seen here in 2007.
Charley Gallay Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 6:22 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
4:54 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Egyptian Court Sentences Mubarak To 3 Years In Prison For Corruption

Ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, sitting in a defendants cage, waves during a court hearing Wednesday. He and two sons were sentenced to jail on corruption charges.
Hassan Mohammed AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 6:33 am

Deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak has been sentenced to three years in prison and a fine, after a court found him guilty of embezzling public money. Mubarak's sons, Alaa and Gamal, were given four-year sentences; the three were accused of using public funds to pay for work on their own property.

The criminal court in Cairo ordered the three to pay a fine of nearly $3 million.

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The Two-Way
12:39 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Led Zeppelin Sued Over 'Stairway To Heaven' Guitar Line

Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, and John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, in 1970. A new lawsuit says the group borrowed from another band's work without crediting it, for the huge hit "Stairway to Heaven."
Roger Jackson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 20, 2014 12:47 pm

Did a band from Los Angeles get ripped off by Led Zeppelin? That's the claim in a new lawsuit by representatives of the band Spirit, which played some dates with the British rock legends in their early days in America.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Tue May 20, 2014

Third Of French Are On Psychoactive Drugs, Agency Says

Originally published on Tue May 20, 2014 12:52 pm

A drug safety agency says that 32 percent of French citizens are regular or occasional users of prescription drugs such as antidepressants and sleeping pills. France's National Drug Safety Agency warns that the pills are prescribed too often.

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The Two-Way
7:45 am
Tue May 20, 2014

CIA Says It Will No Longer Use Vaccine Programs As Cover

A doctor gives a polio vaccine to a child at a health clinic in Baghdad last week. The CIA says it banned the use of vaccine programs as cover for spying last year — a practice health officials said had wide repercussions.
Ahmad Al-Rubaye AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 20, 2014 3:32 pm

A White House official says the CIA will no longer use vaccine programs as cover for spy operations, answering health experts' complaints that it had hurt international efforts to fight disease.

The CIA famously used a vaccination program as a ploy to gain information about the possible whereabouts of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan. That effort didn't succeed, and the doctor involved was sentenced to a prison term. But the revelation had immediate effects — particularly in the fight against polio.

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The Two-Way
6:09 am
Tue May 20, 2014

Tupelo Man Who Sent Ricin Letters To Obama Gets 25-Year Sentence

James Everett Dutschke, seen here as investigators searched his house last spring, was convicted of sending letters containing the poison ricin to President Obama and other officials.
Rogelio V. Solis AP

Originally published on Tue May 20, 2014 12:12 pm

After late wrangling that included a threat to withdraw his guilty plea, J. Everett Dutschke accepted a 25-year prison sentence Monday, a year after he was arrested for sending poison-laced letters to President Obama and others.

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The Two-Way
5:20 am
Tue May 20, 2014

In China, Anger At U.S. Hacking Charges — And Claims Of Hypocrisy

The building housing China's Unit 61398, a division of the army linked to hacking operations, is seen in Shanghai last year. The U.S. says the group worked to steal trade secrets from American companies.
AP

Originally published on Tue May 20, 2014 12:07 pm

China says U.S. charges against five Chinese military officials for allegedly hacking into American computers amount to hypocrisy, citing U.S. surveillance and wiretapping. The country's foreign ministry summoned the American ambassador Monday night to complain about the charges.

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The Two-Way
11:28 am
Mon May 19, 2014

E. Coli Fears Spark Recall Of 1.8 Million Pounds Of Beef

Originally published on Mon May 19, 2014 12:05 pm

Federal authorities say a recall has been issued for 1.8 million pounds of ground beef that was shipped for use in restaurants. Detroit company Wolverine Packing issued the recall Monday; the Department of Agriculture says the beef may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Mon May 19, 2014

Supreme Court Will Hear TSA Whistleblower Case

Originally published on Mon May 19, 2014 12:31 pm

The Supreme Court has accepted a case pitting the Department of Homeland Security against a former air marshal, setting up a debate over the imperatives of government secrecy and the public's safety.

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The Two-Way
7:35 am
Mon May 19, 2014

AT&T, DirecTV And Finding A Prom Date: Reactions To Merger

"I was scratching my head," one analyst says of news that AT&T will acquire satellite TV company DirecTV for $48.5 billion in cash and stock, or $95 per share. Analysts are mixed in their reactions to the deal.
Seth Perlman, Reed Saxon AP

Originally published on Mon May 19, 2014 10:18 am

AT&T's plan to buy DirecTV for $48.5 billion is the latest tectonic shift in the media industry, with many viewing the deal as a response to the pending merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable.

Among business analysts and consumer advocates, response to the AT&T-DirecTV deal is mixed. Here's a roundup of what we're seeing:

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The Two-Way
5:24 am
Mon May 19, 2014

South Korea's President Will Disband Coast Guard

People watch a live speech by South Korean President Park Geun-hye, who said she is disbanding the coast guard over its handling of the Sewol ferry disaster.
Lee Jin-man AP

Originally published on Mon May 19, 2014 12:01 pm

Apologizing for a rescue operation that saved only a fraction of the passengers on a ferry that sank last month, South Korea's president said she plans to dismantle the country's coast guard and reform its emergency and safety systems.

President Park Geun-hye announced the shakeup in a televised address to the nation. At times, she wept as she spoke, particularly as she read out the names of passengers and crew members who were killed. Most of those who died were teenagers on a high school trip.

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