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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9:42am

Thu August 9, 2012
The Torch

Pistorius And South Africa's Relay Team Win Reprieve, Will Race In Final

Anticipation: Oscar Pistorius of South Africa waits for the baton in the team 4x400m relay at London's Olympic Stadium. His teammate fell in the race, but officials deemed he had been interfered with. South Africa will run in the final.
Streeter Lecka Getty Images

Oscar Pistorius, who made history last weekend when he became the first amputee to run in an Olympic race, saw his London 2012 experience come to an abrupt end Thursday — before a successful appeal put his South African 4x400m relay team back in business.

Pistorius never got a chance to run in the relay's qualifying heat, as he awaited the baton handoff from teammate Ofentse Mogawane. But Mogawane, who was running the second leg of the race, slammed into the back of a Kenyan runner who had drifted into his lane.

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5:30pm

Wed August 8, 2012
The Torch

May-Treanor And Walsh Jennings Go Out Golden, With A Three-Peat

Americans Kerri Walsh Jennings (left) and Misty May-Treanor yell after winning a record third-straight gold medal in women's beach volleyball, at the Horse Guard's Parade in London.
Cameron Spencer Getty Images

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings have won an unprecedented Olympic three-peat in women's beach volleyball, as they defeated their fellow Americans, the team of Jennifer Kessy and April Ross, in the gold medal match.

The match lasted just 36 minutes, as May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings won the first and second sets by the same score: 21-16. On the final point, Ross' serve floated long, and the celebration was on. May-Treanor started dancing on the sand, and the players ran to the stands to hug their loved ones.

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3:23pm

Wed August 8, 2012
The Torch

Shut Out Of London Games, Video Artists Get Inventive

A video pays homage to the Olympic Games — and to the video games of the 1980s. It's one of many inventive videos around the web, inspired by the London Games.
Flikli

It's not easy to find video of the London 2012 Olympics on the Internet — even on YouTube. And that's inspiring people to "interpret" the Summer Games for themselves. For instance, you can see puppet shows, 8-bit video, and Taiwanese animation, all related to the Olympics... or, at least sort of related.

Here are some of my favorites — feel free to put yours into the comment section below:

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2:44pm

Wed August 8, 2012
The Torch

How Do You Stack Up Against An Olympic Athlete?

Weightlifter Kazuomi Ota of Japan takes a moment after failing to lift the required weight in the men's +105kg final in London. At 6 feet and 324 pounds, Ota is one of the largest Olympians.
Lars Baron Getty Images

Sure, you might spend a lot of time on your couch, as you watch the Summer Olympics. And hey, maybe you've drifted a couple pounds above your fighting weight. But there's all kinds of athletes competing in London — one of them has to be around the same size as you, right?

Now you can find that out, thanks to the BBC, whose site has an interactive chart that lets you enter your height and weight — and then tells you which two Olympic athletes you most resemble.

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10:53am

Wed August 8, 2012
The Torch

Rogue Condoms Appear In Olympic Village; Organizers Take Action

London Mayor Boris Johnson picks up a packet of Olympic branded condoms during a visit to the Olympic Village last month. Durex, the official Olympic supplier, has sent 150,000 condoms to the village. A bucket of rogue condoms has created a small controversy.
Scott Heavey Getty Images

It should come as no surprise that Olympics organizers take brand endorsements and official suppliers very seriously. That extends beyond logos on shorts and shoes — up to, and including, condoms. That's right, the Olympics has an "official" condom — and organizers want to get to the bottom of how a bucket of rogue condoms reached the Olympic Village.

As has happened before at the London Games, it started with a tweet.

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9:48am

Wed August 8, 2012
The Torch

Let's Catch Up: London Abuzz Over Women's Soccer; Alternate Medal Count

Chinese trampoline gold medalist Dong Dong competes in London. An analysis by Yahoo finds that China's Olympians outpace their U.S. counterparts in judged competitions, such as trampoline and diving.
Cameron Spencer Getty Images

Good morning. Only five days remain in the Summer Games, and China leads the United States in the medal count, with a total of 73 (34 gold) to America's 71 (30 gold). Here's other news that caught our eye this morning:

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3:17pm

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Equestrian Group Clears Way For Cloned Horses To Compete In The Olympics

A cloned foal named "ET Cryozootech Stallion" stands with Hugo Simon, Austrian former Olympic rider of "princeps" (initial donor) ET. The main equestrian organization has ended its ban on clones in the Olympics
Laurent Cipriani AFP/Getty Images

Will the London 2012 Games be remembered as the last Olympics of the pre-clone era? The answer is maybe — because the group that oversees equestrian events has given its OK to allowing cloned horses to compete in the Summer Olympics.

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1:05pm

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Aly Raisman Becomes First U.S. Woman To Win Olympic Gold In Floor Exercise

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 1:23 pm

Gymnast Aly Raisman became the first American woman to win a gold in the floor exercise, with her victory at the London 2012 Games.
Thomas Coex AFP/Getty Images

U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman has won the gold medal in the women's floor exercise at the London 2012 Games. Her powerful routine garnered a score of 15.600 — enough to beat the 15.200 of Romania's Catalina Ponor, who turned in a technically strong performance.

Russia's Aliya Mustafina took bronze, with 14.900. American Jordyn Wieber finished seventh, with a 14.500 score.

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11:31am

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Venezuela's Olympic Hero Gets A Parade To Celebrate Long-Awaited Gold

Venezuelan gold medal fencer Ruben Limardo (center) greets supporters after arriving in Caracas Monday. Limardo was received at the airport as a national hero, after winning the first gold medal for Venezuela in 44 years.
Juan Barreto AFP/Getty Images

The streets of Caracas, Venezuela, were awash in joy Monday, as fencer Rubén Limardo brought home the country's first gold medal in 44 years. That's right: the last time a Venezuelan Olympian won gold was in 1968. So, Limardo's fans could be forgiven for going a little crazy over it.

"I never imagined they'd receive me like this," he said.

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10:34am

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

National Zoo Names Cheetah Cubs After U.S. Sprinters

The Cheetahs In Question: Two three-month-old cheetah cubs play during their first week of being on public view at the National Zoo. The animals were named after U.S. track stars Justin Gatlin and Carmelita Jeter. But like even the smallest of felines, there is precious little chance they will ever show even a flicker of recognition upon hearing their name called.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Two cheetah cubs whose cuteness recently landed them on Facebook and Tumblr pages around the Internet have been named after U.S. Olympians competing in London.

Presumably, it was the cheetahs' fabled speed, not cuteness, that inspired officials at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., to name them Carmelita and Justin, after sprinters Carmelita Jeter and Justin Gatlin.

The three-month-old felines' namesakes won silver (Jeter) and bronze (Gatlin) medals in the 100-meter sprint at the Summer Games.

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10:14am

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Gold Medal In Hand, U.S. Vaulter Suhr's 'Hangar Time' Seems Well Spent

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 11:32 am

American gold medalist Jenn Suhr and Cuba's silver medalist Yarisley Silva celebrate after the women's pole vault final at the London 2012 Olympics. Suhr won silver at the 2008 Games.
Gabriel Bouys AFP/Getty Images

U.S. pole vaulter Jenn Suhr had a long-awaited breakthrough Monday evening, when she won the gold medal in her event at the London Olympics, clearing the bar at 15'7. She defeated a field that included two-time gold medalist Elena Isinbaeva of Russia, who has dominated women's pole vaulting in recent years.

Suhr, 30, won the silver medal in the event at the Beijing 2008 Games. In London's Olympic Stadium Monday, the vaulters were challenged by windy conditions that kept them well below world-record heights — and even had them clutching blankets to stay warm between attempts.

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9:08am

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Let's Catch Up: Australia's Quiet Summer, And A U.S. Invasion

Triathlon gold medalist Alistair Brownlee of Britain (right) and silver medalist Javier Gomez of Spain lie on the ground after crossing the finish line in the London Games.
Christophe Simon AFP/Getty Images

Good morning. A lot has been happening in London, where the Summer Games are in their eleventh day. Here's a rundown of the news that caught our eye:

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8:47am

Tue August 7, 2012
The Torch

Coming Up On Day 11 Of The London Olympics

On the Olympics' eleventh day, artistic gymnasts will go for their last big batch of medals. There are 21 medals up for grabs Tuesday. Here are some of the highlights of the day's action:

Gymnastics

  • 9:00a Men's Parallel Bars Final
  • 9:47a Women's Beam Final
  • 10:37a Men's Horizontal Bar Final
  • 11:23a Women's Floor Exercise Final

Athletics (a.k.a. Track and Field)

  • 2:00p Men's High Jump Final
  • 2:15p Women's 100m Hurdles Semi-finals
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4:34pm

Mon August 6, 2012
The Torch

Boxer Claressa Shields,17, Reaches Olympic Semifinal, Where A Medal Awaits

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 6:44 pm

U.S. boxer Claressa Shields is declared the winner on points over Anna Laurell of Sweden in the women's middleweight boxing quarterfinals at the 2012 London Olympic Games.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty Images

U.S. Olympic boxer Claressa Shields, the teenager whose dream of being in the first crop of Olympic women boxers led her to tell her story on All Things Considered back in February, will fight for a medal in London.

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4:01pm

Mon August 6, 2012
The Torch

Watching The Olympics Online: Fans Find Ways Around NBC's Control

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 9:42 am

Jamaica's Usain Bolt gestures to a camera after running in an Olympic 100-meter semifinal. There's no telling when Americans might have seen his actions, as NBC tape-delays top events. Online, fans are finding ways around the network's strategy.
Sergey Ponomarev AP

When we posted about the apps and streaming options NBC and others offer for the London 2012 Games, many readers responded that as non-TV subscribers, they were cut out of the plan. Many added that they aren't scofflaws — they're people who watch broadcast television, and occasionally pay for cable shows or movies via Netflix or iTunes.

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