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 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.

Follow her on Twitter @elisewho.

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4:50pm

Sat October 5, 2013
All Tech Considered

U.S. Shutdown May Be Driving Traffic To 'Sugar Daddy' Sites

A sugar daddy dating website says nearly 14,000 women have joined since Sept. 29, as the federal government prepared to shut down.
Cat London iStockPhoto.com

sugar daddy (noun): a well-to-do usually older man who supports or spends lavishly on a mistress, girlfriend, or boyfriend

The government shutdown may have become a boon for one kind of online dating site — those that help users find sugar daddies.

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10:55am

Fri October 4, 2013
All Tech Considered

Tech Week That Was: Bitcoin Bust, Twitter IPO, Siri Outed

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 1:25 pm

A voice actor has come forward to say she is the voice behind Siri on American iPhones.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

The tech news kept a-comin' this week, so we've got a lot to cover in our weekly roundup. Here we go ...

ICYMI

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1:50pm

Thu October 3, 2013
All Tech Considered

What We Know About Ross Ulbricht, Or 'Dread Pirate Roberts'

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 3:58 pm

The FBI alleges Ross Ulbricht ran the vast underground drug marketplace Silk Road for more than two years.
Google +

When federal agents made their bust of Silk Road, the Internet's largest and most sophisticated underground illicit goods market, they unmasked its mastermind and owner, who went by the alias "Dread Pirate Roberts." According to the FBI, he is a 29-year-old Texan named Ross Ulbricht.

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1:02am

Thu October 3, 2013
All Tech Considered

The Man Behind The Shadowy Illicit Drug Market, Silk Road

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 10:53 am

A screen grab from a December 2012 StoryCorps interview with Ross Ulbricht, the alleged mastermind of the online marketplace known as Silk Road.
YouTube

It's not every day federal authorities get to bust a case like this. It involves millions of dollars, illicit drugs and a would-be assassin, all of which allegedly were bought and sold on the Internet, in a shadowy online marketplace known as the Silk Road. On Tuesday, federal authorities shut down that site and arrested 29-year-old Ross Ulbricht, the man they say is its mastermind.

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1:27am

Wed October 2, 2013
All Tech Considered

Tech Problems Plague First Day Of Health Exchange Rollout

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 8:35 am

Heavy Internet traffic and system problems plagued the launch of the new health insurance exchanges on Tuesday.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Many Americans got "please wait" messages Tuesday when they tried to start shopping for health coverage on the federal government's new health insurance website, healthcare.gov. A series of technological glitches, delays and crashes kept people from getting to several of the 16 state exchanges, too.

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1:48pm

Tue October 1, 2013
All Tech Considered

Agency Websites Shut Down With The Government

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 2:50 pm

The message users will get when they try to go to Census.gov during the shutdown.
Census.gov

If you or your child has a school report due tomorrow, the Census Bureau site will not be available to help. Census.gov and its affiliates, like American FactFinder and online surveys, are offline as part of the federal government's shutdown. The same goes for the Federal Trade Commission's site, the Agriculture Department's USDA.gov and the Library of Congress' site, which can also be a rich resource of reference information.

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12:47pm

Fri September 27, 2013
All Tech Considered

Tech Week That Was: Online Comments, iPad Hacks And The ACC

Originally published on Fri September 27, 2013 1:12 pm

What to do about trolls in comments sections? It's part of a big conversation in tech this week.
iStockphoto.com

It's time for your NPR All Tech Week in Review! Here's a rundown, in case you missed any of the technology and culture coverage on the airwaves and around the interwebs this week.

ICYMI

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12:09pm

Fri September 27, 2013
All Tech Considered

Phantom Phone Vibrations: So Common They've Changed Our Brains?

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 8:09 pm

Phantom Vibration Syndrome: That phenomenon where you think your phone is vibrating when it's not.
iStockphoto.com

Phantom vibration — that phenomenon where you think your phone is vibrating but it's not — has been around only since the mobile age. And five years ago, when its wider existence became recognized, news organizations, including ours, covered the "syndrome" as a sign of the digital encroachment in our lives. Today, it's so common that researchers have devoted studies to it.

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11:06am

Thu September 26, 2013
All Tech Considered

What You Emailed Us About Using The 'ACC'

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 12:16 pm

We're still combing through all your emails about the acc.
iStockphoto.com

This morning, I griped about the acc, our newly coined name for the practice of copying a third party on an existing email chain to undermine or pull rank on the original recipient. (The A can stand for angry, awkward, annoying ... or other A-words you might be thinking of ...)

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5:18am

Thu September 26, 2013
All Tech Considered

The Worst Kind Of Email CC: Not A BCC, But An A(nnoying)CC

Consider your motivations before you add someone to the cc: field of an email.
Baris Onal iStockphoto.com

A middle school jab goes something like this: "We're having an A-B conversation, so you can C your way out." I bring this up because there's a workplace parallel to this that doesn't seem to have a name. It's when you're having an A-B email conversation and one party suddenly copies your boss, manager or someone more senior, in order to get an advantage in the discussion at hand.

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10:46am

Fri September 20, 2013
All Tech Considered

Tech Week That Was: New iOS Design And Grand Theft Auto

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 11:47 am

Grand Theft Auto V raked in more than $800 million in sales in its first 24 hours on the shelves.
Mario Tama Getty Images

It's time for the weekly roundup of what happened here on All Tech and on our airwaves, and a look back at the big conversations in technology.

ICYMI

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9:51am

Tue September 17, 2013
All Tech Considered

How Blogging And Twitter Are Making Us Smarter

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 1:41 pm

Students studying on their laptops in Berlin. Writer Clive Thompson says that actively engaging with computers is making students better writers.
Sean Gallup Getty Images

Scanning the Internet today, I found a pair of pieces by writer and columnist Clive Thompson — one, for The Globe and Mail, another, for Wired magazine, that focus on how our brains get a boost when we're using social media and blogging.

"The fact that so many of us are writing has changed the way we think," he writes in Wired. "Just as we now live in public, so do we think in public."

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3:09pm

Mon September 16, 2013
All Tech Considered

Smartphone Boom Fuels A $1 Billion Fantasy Sports Industry

Originally published on Mon September 16, 2013 3:55 pm

Steve Covino and Rich Davis attend Sirius XM's Annual Celebrity Fantasy Football Draft in New York in 2012.
Cindy Ord Getty Images for Sirius XM Radio

The whole beauty of fantasy sports is that you can manage teams of pro athletes without ever leaving your couch. The process of drafting teams, betting on the success of individual players and trash-talking with your similarly obsessed friends takes place on Web and mobile platforms, and that makes the fantasy sports pastime about more than just bragging rights. It's become a billion-dollar business.

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11:36am

Mon September 16, 2013
All Tech Considered

Whether Facebook Makes You Lonely Depends On How You Use It

Originally published on Mon September 16, 2013 1:20 pm

Does Facebook make you sadder? It depends on how you use it.
Facebook

Not long ago, we reported on a new University of Michigan study that found the more young people used Facebook, the worse they felt. According to the research, Facebook use led to declines in moment-to-moment happiness and overall life satisfaction.

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12:59pm

Fri September 13, 2013
All Tech Considered

Tech Week That Was: Brogrammers, New iPhones, Twitter IPO

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 8:11 pm

Twitter announced by tweet Thursday that it plans to go public.
Lionel Bonaventure AFP/Getty Images

Not a slow news week in the world of technology and culture. But as we do each Friday, we've collected the stories you might have missed from NPR and our friends in the tech reporting universe.

We usually separate the week's big conversations from what you might have missed on NPR, but since we covered the major topics of conversation, here's one big roundup:

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5:33am

Fri September 13, 2013
All Tech Considered

A Few Takes On How To Fix The Tech Industry's 'Bro' Problem

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 8:03 am

Hackers pose at Disrupt Hackathon in 2011.
Araya Diaz Getty Images

The tech industry's sometimes sexist "brogrammer" culture came into focus at least twice this week, making it as good a time as any to highlight the running conversation about how to constructively change the systemic, entrenched issues that allow for offensive apps like Titstare, which was presented at a tech industry hackathon.

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10:52am

Thu September 12, 2013
All Tech Considered

The $7 Billion Tech Acquisition You Haven't Heard Of

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 11:33 am

Molex makes the four-prong connector you see at left.
Taylor Bennett Flickr

While most of us were distracted waiting for a gold iPhone — gold! — the billionaire industrialist Koch brothers quietly made a deal to acquire an electronics company for $7.2 billion. The company they bought? Molex.

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3:13pm

Wed September 11, 2013
All Tech Considered

Sexism In The Tech Industry Takes Center Stage

Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 3:59 pm

TechCrunch's Disrupt 2012 conference in San Francisco. This year, two hackathon presentations ignited a firestorm.
Max Morse Getty Images

For women struggling to make inroads in the male-dominated tech industry, a few stunning situations this week have provided some extreme examples of what they're up against.

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9:36am

Tue September 10, 2013
All Tech Considered

Gotta Be Honest, We're Not That Geeked About Apple's Reveal

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 12:48 pm

Apple is expected to unveil new iPhones on Tuesday.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Leaks to tech industry sites give us a sense of what to expect from Apple's coming product announcement: Not one, but two new iPhone models. One will be more affordable, to reach international markets. The other, which we believe will be called the iPhone 5S, will come in gold or champagne colors.

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12:26pm

Mon September 9, 2013
All Tech Considered

Net Neutrality In Court: Here's What You Need To Know

Originally published on Mon September 9, 2013 1:27 pm

The future of the Internet is at stake in a case before a D.C. court.
Hoang Dinh Nam AFP/Getty Images

The beauty of the Internet — and the reason for its ubiquitous place in our lives — is that just about anyone can use it to offer services, products or information. But the link between what's out there on the Internet, how fast it gets to us and how much data can get to us is dependent on Internet service providers and the rules that govern them. That's where things get thorny for the principle of net neutrality.

If your eyes are already glazing over, consider this: This debate could affect the speed, quality and cost of your Hulu or Netflix binge-viewing.

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