Happy New Year to us – NPR announces 7.5% rate increase for 2012

Thanks in part to the wonderful folks at AIR, NPR has increased their freelancer rates for the first time in ten years. Woot! New rates are posted here. Details below. What an awesome way to ring in 2012!



Date: January 1, 2012

From: Margaret Low Smith, Interim SVP of NPR News

Dear Colleagues,

Happy New Year! I’m delighted to give you some good news to start 2012. Effective immediately, NPR is instituting an increase of at least 7.5% in most fees paid to station-based and independent radio contributors. We’ve also simplified the existing compensation structure as you’ll see in the attached document. Rates for Digital and Multimedia work will not be affected by this increase since those rates were set more recently.

We’ve heard a lot of feedback on this issue from our Member Station contributors and have had many conversations with Sue Schardt on behalf of the Association for Independents in Radio. NPR’s decision to increase rates, which comes at a time of tight budgets, is intended to reflect our commitment to the vital network of station-based and independent reporters whose contributions enhance our programming every day.

With that same spirit, we’re developing a dedicated resource space on NPR.org. Freelancers will be able to find contacts, sample pitches, policies and guidelines all in one place. We hope this will provide clarity and transparency and ultimately make everyone’s life a whole lot easier. We’ll let you know when it’s ready for prime time.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to our bureau chiefs and editors. We hope you had a wonderful holiday and look forward to working with you in 2012.


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