Sam Sanders

Sam Sanders is a correspondent and host of It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders at NPR. In the show, Sanders engages with journalists, actors, musicians, and listeners to gain the kind of understanding about news and popular culture that can only be reached through conversation. The podcast releases two episodes each week: a "deep dive" interview on Tuesdays, as well as a Friday wrap of the week's news.

Previously, as a key member of NPR's election unit, Sam covered the intersection of culture, pop culture, and politics in the 2016 election, and embedded with the Bernie Sanders campaign for several months. He was also one of the original co-hosts of NPR's Politics Podcast, which launched in 2015.

Sanders joined NPR in 2009 as a Kroc Fellow, and since then has worn many hats within the organization, including field producer and breaking news reporter. He's spent time at three Member stations as well: WUNC in North Carolina, Oregon Public Broadcasting, and WBUR in Boston, as an intern for On Point.

Sanders graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School in 2009 with a master's degree in public policy, with a focus on media and politics. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas, with a double major in political science and music.

In his free time, Sanders runs, eats bacon, and continues his love/hate relationship with Twitter.

Update at 7:21 p.m. ET. Jobs to be lost in deal:

Baseball's most iconic bat has a new owner. Monday, Hillerich & Bradsby Co., which owns Louisville Slugger, announced the brand would be acquired by Wilson Sporting Goods Co. for $70 million in cash. The move means that Wilson, maker of Major League Baseball's official glove, will soon own the maker of MLB's official bat.

Jacob Ryan of NPR member station WFPL reports that some jobs will be lost in the acquisition:

The most visible part of Starbucks' campaign to get customers talking about race — putting the slogan "Race Together" on coffee cups — has come to an end.

In a memo sent to all Starbucks employees Sunday, CEO Howard Schultz wrote: "This phase of the effort — writing 'Race Together' (or placing stickers) on cups, which was always just the catalyst for a much broader and longer term conversation — will be completed as originally planned today, March 22."

A federal grand jury in New York has indicted a U.S. Air Force veteran on charges of attempting to join the self-described Islamic State.

Tairod Nathan Webster Pugh was indicted on two counts, including obstruction of justice, the U.S. Justice Department said in a statement, adding he will be arraigned Wednesday.

NPR's Carrie Johnson tells our Newscast unit that prosecutors say Pugh was born and raised in the U.S., but "turned his back on the country in an attempt to join ISIS," as the Islamic State is also known.

Updated at 8:11 p.m. ET

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's office has charged Robert Durst with one count of first-degree murder in the 2000 death of Susan Berman. A statement announcing the charge also said that Durst is being held without bail in New Orleans, after being arrested Saturday by FBI agents. The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office says the charge against Durst makes him eligible for the death penalty. The case is still under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department.

The Irish government hopes to vote on emergency legislation quickly to counter today's Irish Court of Appeal ruling, which on a technicality legalized a number of hard drugs in the country, including ecstasy and "magic mushrooms." The three-person court found that government officials had not gotten parliamentary approval when they added drugs to the list outlawed by the 1977 Misuse of Drugs Act.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And now the wreckage of a Japanese World War II battleship has been found after decades underwater. Here's NPR's Sam Sanders.

Tinder, the immensely popular dating app that lets users pick a potential match with just the swipe of a finger, launched a paid version this week in 140 countries. But there's a catch: Your age will determine how much you pay.

Tinder told NPR that U.S. users will pay $9.99 for Tinder Plus if they're under 30, and $19.99 per month if they're 30 or older. U.K. users between the ages of 18 and 27 will be charged 3.99 pounds per month, and users 28 and older will be charged 14.99 pounds per month.

For the last few months, NPR has been looking into millennials, as part of our series called New Boom. This group, some 80 million strong, spends over $1 trillion a year by some estimates. So, we wondered: How should brands and advertisers go about reaching millennials if they're so powerful, but also so different, than generations before them?

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Ed Sabol's first film for the NFL was of the 1962 championship game between the Green Bay Packers and the New York Giants. He opened with panoramic views, planes flying by and trains rolling on the tracks.

Sabol's crew filmed in 15 degree weather with frozen cameras. They weren't just filming football. They were making cinema. Just a few years later, Ed Sabol became head of NFL Films. And then he and his son, Steve, revolutionized the way we watch sports.

Waze, the popular navigation app boasting more than 50 million users worldwide, has a new critic: police officers. Over the past few weeks, law enforcement officials have been urging the app and its owner, Google, to disable a feature that allows users to report when they've spotted a police officer, in real time, for all other Waze users to see.

Sergio Kopelev, a reserve sheriff in Orange County, Calif., is one of the law enforcement officials behind the push to remove Waze's police tracker. He says he first discovered the feature through his family.

By the time you read this post, asteroid 2004 BL86 will already have come as close to us as it's going to get as it flies by Earth. At about 11:19 a.m. ET today, it was nearly 745,000 miles away from our planet. That's only about three times the distance from the Earth to the moon.

But don't worry, you may still be able to catch a glimpse of the huge hunk of rock tonight.

When and how can I see the asteroid?

The Obama administration is proposing new protections for large portions of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). The U.S. Department of Interior says it's the first time it's recommended additional protections and that their new recommendations have the potential to be one of the largest conservation measures "since Congress passed the visionary Wilderness Act over 50 years ago."

Facebook's on a mission to make your News Feed a little more truthful.

The social media giant has announced it will start doing more to alert users when stories they're seeing in their feeds are fake. And it will allow users to start flagging hoaxes themselves. But Facebook says it won't remove false stories. And the company says it won't start "reviewing content and making a determination on its accuracy."

Google Glass Phase 1 is officially over. The Google Glass team posted a statement with the news to Google+ today. But the announcement says that Glass is not dead, it's just going through a "transition," and that the Google Glass team is "continuing to build for the future." The first, "Explorer," version of Glass was, according to the team, an "open beta" version, or basically a big, public test of the new product. The team didn't give a timeline for future versions.

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It may or may not be at a theater near you, but Sony Pictures Entertainment will now release its comedy "The Interview" on Christmas Day. NPR's Sam Sanders reports it will be a limited release that comes after a push by independent theaters.

Greenpeace has apologized to the people of Peru after activists entered a highly restricted area to leave a message on ancient, sacred desert land.

Activists placed giant, yellow letters spelling out, "Time for change! The future is renewable. Greenpeace," near markings in the earth known as the Nazca lines.

Reuters reports that:

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It's a pretty good time to be president of a private college, at least financially. The Chronicle of Higher Education just released its annual roundup of executive compensation for private college presidents, and it reports that Shirley Ann Jackson of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute earned $7.1 million in 2012 alone. (2012 is the latest year federal tax documents with this information are currently available.)

Matthew and Grace Huang, an American couple who had been forced to remain in Qatar over the death of their adopted 8-year old daughter in 2013, have left the country en route to the United States.

On Sunday, an appeals court cleared the Huangs of all charges in their daughter's death, but as they arrived at the Hamad International Airport in Doha later that day to fly home to California, the couple were detained again. Qatari authorities said another appeal had been filed in their case and that they could not travel.

That travel ban was lifted Wednesday.

Wednesday marks the fifth anniversary of USAID subcontractor Alan Gross' detention in Cuba. Gross had been working on a covert program to improve Internet access for Jewish Cubans, giving out laptops and mobile phones while traveling in the country on a tourist visa. Gross was arrested on Dec. 3, 2009. A Cuban court found him guilty of crimes against the Cuban state in 2011, and sentenced him to 15 years in prison.

Nick Miroff previously reported on this story for NPR:

Since Tim Cook has been CEO of Apple, the company's market capitalization (or the value of its outstanding shares) has increased by more than $300 billion. On Nov. 26, it reached its highest level yet, almost $698 billion.

Numerically, this is a feat. Quartz says, "In nominal terms no company has ever been as big as Apple." Of course, Quartz goes on to say that, adjusted for inflation, Microsoft was bigger at its 1990s peak.

If you go to HarvardNotFair.org, you'll find yourself on a page that says this: Were You Denied Admission to Harvard? It may be because you're the wrong race.

Tuesday night, Nielsen SoundScan announced that Taylor Swift sold 1.287 million copies of her new album, 1989 in its first week of release. This would be impressive in any year, but in a year like this, you could call it a miracle. So far in 2014, only one album has sold more than a million copies: the soundtrack to the movie Frozen, which actually came out in 2013. No other album released in 2014 has sold one million copies, all year long. So it's not just that Taylor Swift is doing big numbers. She's doing big numbers at a time when no one else is doing big numbers.

Nineteen-year-old college freshman Lauren Hill played her first game Sunday night, for a tiny, Division III college in Cincinnati.

That's not usually big news. But Hill has a rare form of brain cancer, and her first collegiate game might also be her last — which brought an unusual degree of attention to the court at Mount Saint Joseph University.

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And now this - President Obama will award a long delayed Medal of Honor to a soldier next month. He'll honor Army First Lt. Alonzo H. Cushing, who fought in the Civil War. NPR's Sam Sanders reports.

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