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The Daily Need

Welcome to the new Need to Know website

Welcome to the new Need to Know website. We’re changing the focus of the show, as you can probably tell from our new look.

Need to Know will spend the next 15 months covering the campaign for president, but we’re going to do it differently. Here on the website, as well as on the broadcast, we’ll be covering the campaign from the voters’ perspective, not the candidates’. In cities and towns all across the country, we citizens are already dealing with the consequences of decisions our political leaders have made, or declined to make, in Washington.  The issues the candidates are debating are not abstract or theoretical to average Americans; they are what we are struggling to live with every day.

You’ll be hearing from citizens like you, as we continue to do the kind of reporting Need to Know has featured since its debut in May of 2010.  We will cover the issues of our day through the stories of our lives.

We’ll continue to bring you stories from the Watch List, in which we investigate what happens when industries are largely left to regulate themselves. We’ll meet Change Agents, private citizens who innovate, inspire and lead.  We’ll gather some of the brightest minds and ask what simple suggestion they have to Fix America.

We’ll have personal essays and op ed columns from fresh voices. We hope those voices will include yours. Post comments, offer us story ideas in our pitch room, follow us on twitter.  We’ll have fresh news and analysis every day.

Thanks for visiting and viewing Need to Know.

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    Mike Daisey takes a bite out of Apple
    The veteran reporter combines his own story, conversations with dozens of workers outside the Shenzhen plant, and the history of the tech company to highlight the human cost of some of the world's most popular computers and gadgets.
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    Remembering Susan Sontag
    A new play examines the early life of a seminal American writer and her legacy of serious political debate and inquiry.
  • thumb
    Walking through walls with Mark Rylance
    In his Tony acceptance speech last night, the actor confused and bemused, but it's a magic trick he's performed before.


  • vee

    I don’t know who decided to make changes…It was fabulous the way it was. As for why you have chosen to cover politics….I don’t… need to know. 

  • J7t14r

    You will definitely be getting my comments.

  • Bigkis

    Allison and John I am trying to keep an open mind… but.. I thought the program was perfect.  Diversity,topics of interest.  Considering the comments that many of my friends, associates are I really want to know…

  • infoman

    Time will tell. I wish you good luck with the new program but will miss A & J.

  • Anonymous

    You’re going to waste 15 months on the political circus?  Why?

    Seems to me, it’s a cop-out.  Much easier to report what prospective voters are saying than to do hard-hitting journalism that makes the powerful uncomfortable.

  • Life

    Please please do several shows on the history and the consequences of the prohibition of marijuana…it’s all about profit and oppression and our country is in dire need of reform.

  • Margi MacMurdo Reading

     Why does our country need another way to alter it’s consciousness?

  • Jontjes

    We just finished watching Scott Simon on your new format. Is the show going to be only 30 minutes every week? What a disappointment. We’ve been fans since its inception, and are age-old fans of Scott Simon, since our radio alarm has awakened us to him every Sat. since the 90′s. He will be a tremendous asset to the show, but please tell us that the 30 min. format is temporary.
    Jim and Patty Ontjes
    Carmichael, CA

  • A.A.McC

    The main media is hiding facts about Ron Paul and voters’ desire to hear more from this man. If you are truly going to come from the perspective of the voter, please take a little time to focus on this man and his ideas. He scares the powers that control the major media thus he must have some pretty important things to say!

  • CJ Floyd

    Don’t need to know why the narrowing of focus, but I’d certainly like to know who made the decision and what prompted and motivated the decision makers.  I applaud Scott Simon as host, but would like to know why John Mecham has either been relegated to retreated to doing op-eds.  My initial gut reaction is that I shall get more of the campaign than I can stomach over the next 15 months and will get too little of what I need to know but no one is telling me because everyone is telling me much more than I need to know about the election.  I”m going to write in David Brooks for President and Elizabeth Warren for Vice President and go to bed election night knowing that I cast my vote for the two most competent and qualified people I could think of.

  • jan

     I’d probably write in Robert Reich for President.  People can’t buy or consume when they don’t have jobs.  Elizabeth Warren sounds good. 

  • blc

    I have been watching the show for about a year and really like it.  I am a big fan of Scott Simon, but I really miss the girl that was the anchor.  I also liked the diversity of topics.  We can get this political and campaign stuff everywhere.  I miss theold format and length.

  • Altsv7

    Scott Simon NPR blek! gag.This will be my last Need to Know that I’ve watched. Always an inferior show but
    at times informative to Bill Moyers Now, it’s definitely not worth my
    time now. I hear Bill is returning to the airwaves. I can hardly wait.

  • Judy

    Hooray, finally some honest thoughts and ideas unfiltered by Corporations and the biased TV reporters.  I really think the biggest problem in our beloved country is that “we the people” have given up our power by being so apathetic and taking our freedoms so much for granted and now we are losing them slowly but surely a little at a time and we are now not much more than a huge corporation.  We can return our government and country to it’s former glory and reputation in the world and among it’s own peoples if we are willing to sacrifice and rebuild but it will only work if most of us care enough to make it happen.

  • APS

    I am very disappointed with the changes made to Need to Know. I can’t understand why NTK is becoming a 30-minute program, and why it’s going to focus on the presidential campaign. I loved that NTK made in-depth studies of all manner of subjects. Now I don’t see how it will be distinguishable from many other shows. I never would have expected the powers-that-be in public television to decide to devote less time to investigative journalism on diverse topics, nor would I have expected them to imitate the media outlets covering the presidential election ad nauseum. And what a shame that the program’s re-invention meant the loss of Alison Stewart. I was sorry to see Jon Meacham leave, but with Ms. Stewart remaining and the show’s format still intact (with the exception of Mr. Meacham’s weekly offerings from a historical perspective), NTK continued to be excellent. I’m sure Scott Simon will be a good host, but I will dearly miss the former program, and I wonder if it will now interest me at all.

  • Phil

    I don’t like that you are shortening the length of the program or narrowing the focus either.  I haven’t seen the new format.  I didn’t know if NTK was still on the air.   I just found out that WHYY in Philadelphia has started showing it late at night or in the afternoon.

  • philadelphia viewer

    I’m looking for when “need to know” is airing in philadelphia? on whyy or the allentown or new jersey statsions. i’m trying to watch “America By the Numbers” and it was supposed to be on today at 2 pm but there’s an Amerian Graduate special running. when will you be airing the America By the Numbers episode of Need to Know on Whyy? thanks.