Elise Hu

Elise Hu is a reporter who covers the intersection of technology and culture for NPR's on-air, online and multimedia platforms.

She joined NPR in 2011 to coordinate the digital development and editorial vision for the StateImpact network, a state government reporting project focused on member stations.

Before joining NPR, she was one of the founding reporters who helped launch The Texas Tribune, a non-profit digital news startup devoted to politics and public policy. While at the Tribune, Hu oversaw television partnerships and multimedia projects; contributed to The New York Times' expanded Texas coverage and pushed for editorial innovation across platforms.

An honors graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia's School of Journalism, she previously worked as the state political reporter for KVUE-TV in Austin, WYFF-TV in Greenville, SC, and reported from Asia for the Taipei Times.

Her work has earned a Gannett Foundation Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism, a National Edward R. Murrow award for best online video, beat reporting awards from the Texas Associated Press and The Austin Chronicle once dubiously named her the "Best TV Reporter Who Can Write."

Outside of work, Hu is an adjunct instructor at Northwestern University and Georgetown University's journalism schools. She's also an adviser to the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, where she keeps up with emerging media and technology as a panelist for the Knight News Challenge.

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4:54pm

Mon July 21, 2014
All Tech Considered

1 Million Net Neutrality Comments Filed, But Will They Matter?

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 8:16 pm

Complaints about Janet Jackson's Super Bowl halftime show performance of 2004 led to a record number of public interactions with the Federal Communications Commission. This year's net neutrality comments come in second.
Donald Miralle Getty Images

The Federal Communications Commission received more than 1 million public comments on the issue of net neutrality during a five-month commenting period that ended Friday.

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3:37am

Fri July 18, 2014
All Tech Considered

Better Culture Could Have Prevented Viral Comcast Call

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 11:13 am

The call center of Zappos.com gets high marks from consumers for strong customer service.
Shashi Bellamkonda Flickr

This week, one man's customer service call to Comcast turned into a badgering — a simple request to cancel his service was repeatedly beaten back by the employee on the other end of the line. It was a familiar feeling for a lot of us, which perhaps explains why more than 4 million people have listened to it in less than a week.

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2:32pm

Wed July 16, 2014
All Tech Considered

Don't Fire The Comcast Guy, Says Caller Who Tried To Cancel

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 5:12 pm

We don't know the fate of the Comcast service rep at the center of a viral call recording.
iStockphoto

Ryan Block, whose hilariously tedious customer service experience with Comcast struck a chord with millions, says the customer service rep who harangued him should not be fired.

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11:53am

Tue July 15, 2014
All Tech Considered

Comcast 'Embarrassed' By The Service Call Making Internet Rounds

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 2:38 pm

Comcast is the largest cable company and home Internet service provider in the United States.
Matt Rourke AP

When a customer service call is described as "Kafkaesque" and "hellish," you pretty much know how it's going to go down before even taking a listen. But in case you haven't heard the condescending, tedious call that's lit up the Internet, here it is:

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1:16pm

Mon July 14, 2014
All Tech Considered

Tech Giants Make Net Neutrality Case As Deadline Nears

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 2:49 pm

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (right) and Facebook lobbyist Joel Kaplan are part of the Internet Association, which filed comments in support of net neutrality Monday.
Alex Wong Getty Images

It's not just comedian John Oliver coming out against cable companies to support net neutrality. The world's largest Internet companies — Google, Facebook, Netflix, Amazon and others — have officially chimed in, filing comments Monday to the Federal Communications Commission, which oversees Internet traffic.

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5:36am

Sat July 12, 2014
All Tech Considered

Tech Week: Google's World Cup Play, Amazon Sued And Kids Tracked

Amazon, led by CEO Jeff Bezos, faces a federal lawsuit over unauthorized in-app purchases by children.
David Ryder Getty Images

Summertime in the tech world has made us eager for some lighter news, which you can find below. But the weightier legal battles in technology continue, as highlighted in our Big Conversation section. And links we think you should see are filed under Curiosities. Have a great weekend, readers.

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4:01pm

Fri July 11, 2014
All Tech Considered

Friday Feline Fun: A Ranking Of The Most Famous Internet Cats

Originally published on Mon July 14, 2014 10:41 am

Celebrity Internet cat Lil' Bub, who ranks No. 4 on the cat influencer list.
Dave Kotinsky Getty Images

For reasons I can't fully understand, the Internet loves its cats. Keyboard Cat and Grumpy Cat are household names, I Can Haz Cheezeburger is a digital empire, and my real-life cats are on a social networking site called Catster (this is not a joke).

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9:58am

Thu July 3, 2014
All Tech Considered

The Future Internet Is Not So Free Or Open, In Pew's New Survey

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 11:04 am

iStockphoto

What we know as the World Wide Web — the main way by which most of us access the Internet — just turned 25 this year. Its existence has allowed for all kinds of learning and free expression, coding and making, rule-breaking and platform-making.

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5:13am

Sat June 28, 2014
All Tech Considered

Tech Week: Google's Plans, Aereo's Loss And Occupied Stalls

An attendee wears a Google Android Mascot hat during the Google I/O Developers Conference in San Francisco.
Stephen Lam Getty Images

It's officially summer, but there's no slowdown on the technology news front. Here's your weekly roundup of notable stories in tech, from the team at NPR and beyond.

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4:44pm

Thu June 26, 2014
All Tech Considered

The Binge-Watch Before The Purge, Now That Aereo Is Likely Done

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 12:35 pm

Chet Kanojia is the founder and CEO of Aereo, which is fighting big broadcasters over its tiny antenna.
Elise Hu NPR

The Supreme Court gave broadcasters a big win this week in their battle against the startup service Aereo. Subscribers in select cities have been watching and recording live broadcast TV with Aereo, at a cost of $8 to $12 a month. But what happens to consumers now that the service is illegal?

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10:57am

Thu June 26, 2014
All Tech Considered

Facebook's Diversity Numbers Are Out, And They're What You Expect

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 3:42 pm

Numbers out Wednesday show almost 7 out of 10 Facebook staffers are male.
Photo Illustration: Joel Saget AFP/Getty Images

The summer of tech company demographic data dumps continues apace. Facebook is the latest big firm to share its staff's racial and gender breakdowns, following similar releases from Google and Yahoo. Other tech firms NPR has reached out to say they are having conversations about whether they will do the same.

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9:56am

Sat June 21, 2014
All Tech Considered

Tech Week: Yo, The Amazon Fire Phone And Apple's iWatch?

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos presents the company's first smartphone, the Fire Phone in Seattle on Wednesday.
David Ryder Getty Images

It was a big week for product news in the tech world, a topic we typically reserve for your weekly round-ups. Here we go ...

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11:27am

Fri June 20, 2014
All Tech Considered

Yo Is The Buzzy App Of The Moment, Whether Yo Like It Or Not

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 2:41 pm

justyo.co

6:49pm

Tue June 17, 2014
All Tech Considered

How Yahoo's Diversity Numbers Compare With Google's

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 8:05 pm

Yahoo is famously led by a woman, CEO Marissa Mayer. But its workforce, like most tech companies, is dominated by men.
Robert Galbraith Reuters/Landov

Yahoo has responded to the years-long calls for tech companies to disclose their staffs' gender and racial breakdowns. The numbers released Tuesday show its workforce, like much of the tech industry, is dominated by white and Asian males. In its post releasing the data, Yahoo explained its reasoning:

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12:02pm

Tue June 17, 2014
All Tech Considered

Democrats Unveil A Bill To Ban Internet Fast Lanes

Originally published on Tue June 17, 2014 1:52 pm

The bill is sponsored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. and Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Calif.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Net neutrality has become a hot topic this summer, despite its snooze-inducing name. The principle governs that data on the Internet should be served to customers on a level playing field — at the same speeds — without priority for certain companies that might be able to pay for "fast lanes" for content.

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