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RTDNA Edward R. Murrow Awards
 

Since 1971, RTDNA has been honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast and digital journalism with the Edward R. Murrow Awards. Among the most prestigious in news, the Murrow Awards recognize local and national news stories that uphold the RTDNA Code of Ethics, demonstrate technical expertise and exemplify the importance and impact of journalism as a service to the community. Murrow Award winning work demonstrates the excellence that Edward R. Murrow made a standard for the broadcast news profession. 

Eligibility - News stations, networks, syndication services, program services, and digital news organizations are all eligible to enter the awards. Edward R. Murrow Awards are presented to news organizations, not individuals. Entries must be submitted as first heard on air or viewed online. All entries must have appeared between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020.

Judging - The RTDNA Code of Ethics serves as the basis for judging standards. The decisions of the judges are final.  At the discretion of the judges, awards may not be granted in some categories.
Timeline
December 21, 2020: Submissions Open
February 11, 2021: Early Bird Submission Deadline
February 18, 2021 (5pm EST): Final Submission Deadline
Final deadline to submit entries is 5pm EST on February 18th, 2021. 
Late entries will be accepted with a $40 late fee per entry through Feb. 22 at 5pm ET.
 
Set yourself up for Murrow Award entry success!
Find everything you need to know to enter in our Step-by-Step Entry GuideIt includes answers to the most commonly asked questions, solutions to the most common entry errors and insights from past winners and judges.
 
Get entry help:
Watch a walk-through of the entry form
 
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2021 events

Divisions
Entries must be submitted in the proper division and region to be considered for judging. Entrants that do not enter correctly will be disqualified. Market size is determined by MSA ranking for radio entries and by DMA ranking for television entries. RTDNA reserves the sole right to reclassify the submission without prior notice to the entrant.

Local TV and Radio
Network, Syndication Service, Program Service TV and Radio
(Any organization that programs to multiple markets)
Digital News Organizations (“Pure Play” digital organizations. No portion of digital entries should have been broadcast.)
Student Awards


Partnerships
Any entry produced in a partnership must be submitted in the market and region of the largest partner. A “partner” is defined as someone who provides production assistance or significant editorial input for an entry. If an organization is only helping distribute work to a wider audience, they will not be considered a partner. All partner organizations must be listed on the award entry.

Please note: RTDNA may utilize elements of any awards submission for promotional purposes, including but not limited to: web links to entries, archived still images, audio and/or video stored and displayed on its own websites, and live streamed or recorded online broadcasts of awards ceremonies in which clips of winning entries are presented.


Fees per Entry
  Member Non-Member
Radio - Small/Large Market $95 $145
Radio - Network $165 $250
TV - Small/Large Market $140 $225
TV - Network $185 $275
Digital News Organization $135 $175


Early Bird
Entries submitted by February 11 automatically receive a $10 off early-bird discount. Entries submitted between February 12 & 18 are charged the regular rates listed above.

Late Fee
Final deadline to submit entries is 5pm EST on February 18th, 2021. 
Late entries will be accepted with a $40 late fee per entry through Feb. 22 at 5pm ET.

Member Discount
To qualify for member rates on entry fees, a member of your full-time news staff must be an RTDNA member through February 18, 2021. Memberships must be paid in full at the time of entry. Member discounts are verified during the entry process. Join or renew online any time. Please contact Karen Hansen if you have any questions about your membership.


Payment
All entries are non-refundable. Payment must be made online by Visa, MasterCard or American Express at the time of entry.  For totals in excess of $1,500, payment may be made by check. Checks must include the entry confirmation number(s). RTDNA must receive your check by Monday, March 15, 2021 for your entries to be considered. Please make checks out to the Radio Television Digital News Association.


Physical awards
RTDNA will mail regional plaques to the address listed on the entry form. If your newsroom is closed, this can be a personal address for 2021 only. You are responsible for reaching out to RTDNA to update your shipping information.



Radio and Television Stations

Divisions
Large Market Station: Markets 1 - 50                 
Small Market Station: Markets 50+
Network, Syndication Service, Program Service: Any organization that programs to multiple markets

State-wide networks should submit in the largest market size in their state. Regional collaborations should submit in the market size and region of the largest partner.

Updated: Radio Markets 2019-2020      Television Markets 2019-2020

A terrestrial station that is also broadcast via satellite and/or online counts as a radio station in the appropriate market size. A purely satellite station should apply in the “Network” radio category.

Fees per Entry
Entries submitted by February 11 receive a $10 off early-bird discount. Late entries will be accepted with a $40 late fee per entry through Feb. 22 at 5pm ET.
 
  Member Non-Member     Member Non-Member
Radio - Small/Large Market $95 $145   TV- Small/Large Market $140 $225
Radio - Network $165 $250   TV- Network $185 $275






Watch: Secrets of winning Murrow Award entries.

 
 
Categories
  *New* EXCELLENCE IN DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION

This category honors outstanding advocacy journalism tackling the topic of diversity, racial injustice and/or inequality. The storytelling must bring an awareness to an issue(s) and potentially bring about a solution or dialogue.
  • The piece can be digital, video, audio, or all three, showcasing creative, well executed and groundbreaking coverage of the topic of diversity.
  • Can be a single piece or a series around a single topic.
  • 30-minute time limit.
  • Entry may be edited, and all commercial breaks must be removed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
PODCAST
Podcasts are defined as digital audio files made available on the internet for downloading to a computer or mobile device, typically available as a series, new installments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.
  • Entry must demonstrate original and outstanding journalistic enterprise on an important issue.
  • Entry may feature a single episode or an edited overview of a series
  • Entry may be edited, and all commercial breaks must be removed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 30 minutes.
  • Entrants should also provide an active link to the full podcast series
NEWSCAST
  • Only regularly scheduled newscasts are eligible for entry, and only one entry is allowed per station.  Networks can submit one entry per news program.
  • Commercial breaks must be removed from the entry but no other editing is allowed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • Entry must not exceed 30 minutes.  If the program is longer than 30 minutes, submit only the first 30 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
BREAKING NEWS COVERAGE
  • NEW RULE: Entry should only contain coverage from first 24 hours after the news event.
  • Submit coverage of a single, unscheduled news event.
  • Entry may be edited and all commercial breaks must be removed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • Entry must not exceed 20 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING
  • Entry must demonstrate original and outstanding journalistic enterprise on an important issue.
  • Entry may include materials from undercover sources, demonstrate extensive research of documents and records, and include records and documentation of allegations made in the report.
  • Entry may be edited, and all commercial breaks must be removed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 15 minutes.
HARD NEWS
  • Submit a single hard news report prepared for a scheduled newscast or newscasts that is not breaking news and not primarily investigative in nature.
  • Humorous or soft-topic stories do not belong in this category.
  • Report must have appeared on a regularly scheduled news program.
  • Entry may not be entered in the Feature Reporting category.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
CONTINUING COVERAGE
  • Submit an entry showing continuing coverage of a major developing story over an extended period of time.
  • Entry may be edited (commercial breaks removed).
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • The entry should include at least one complete news report.
  • Entry must not exceed 30 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
NEWS SERIES
  • Submit coverage of a single subject reported in multiple parts.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 30 minutes.
FEATURE REPORTING
  • Submit a single report covering a human-interest or profile subject that is not breaking news or investigative in nature.
  • Report must have appeared on a regularly scheduled news program. Entry may not be entered in the Reporting: Hard News category.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
SPORTS REPORTING
  • Submit a single packaged report reflecting a journalistic endeavor to report on a newsworthy sports-related subject. Anchored sports segments within programs, stand-alone sports programs and play-by-play are not eligible.
  • Entry must be unedited.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
EXCELLENCE IN SOUND
  • This category is open to both television and radio news organizations.
  • Submit coverage of a single subject reported in a single segment showing creative use of sound to tell a story.
  • Entry must be exactly as it was heard on the air or online.
  • "Year-ender" packages are not allowed.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
EXCELLENCE IN VIDEO
  • This category is open to both television and radio news organizations.
  • Submit coverage of a single subject reported in a single segment showing creative use of video to tell a story.
  • Entry must be exactly as it appeared on air or online.
  • "Year-ender" packages are not allowed.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
NEWS DOCUMENTARY
  • Submit coverage of a single subject reported in a single segment addressing a need or needs of your market.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • Entry must not exceed 60 minutes.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
(Network Television only) FEATURE-LENGTH DOCUMENTARY
  • Submit coverage of a single subject reported in a single segment addressing a need or needs of your audience.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • Entry must be more than 60 minutes in length.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
EXCELLENCE IN WRITING
  • Submit an entry that demonstrates excellence in writing that conveys the feeling and significance of events to the listener or viewer. Entry may represent an individual or collaborative effort and may include up to three examples, exactly as it originally appeared.
  • A script of each example must accompany the entry.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 15 minutes.
EXCELLENCE IN INNOVATION
(Quick tip: This is a great category for your creative COVID reporting solutions!)
  • This category is designed to award legacy radio or television news organizations that innovate their product to enhance the quality of journalism and the audience’s understanding of news.
  • Submit a single entry that demonstrates an innovative use of content, engagement, technology and/or audience experience. A single entry may include audio or video examples; functioning, cached or active URLs; apps; social feeds; or any other platform that demonstrates innovation in journalism.
  • Audio or video entries must not exceed 30 minutes. If the original entry is longer than 30 minutes, submit only the first 30 minutes. Commercials breaks must be removed but no other editing is allowed.
  • A written description explaining how the entry breaks the mold of traditional broadcast journalism is required.
DIGITAL
Who's eligible to enter this category? 
This category has been expanded to allow stations to showcase their website and/or multimedia (broadcast, digital and social media) approach to stories.

Entries in this category can either be an overview of web presence, or focus on multimedia coverage of a single news topic.

The news organization's online presence, as its principal function, must disseminate timely news and information targeted for its core audiences. News content must be generated primarily by entrant, supplemented by secondary content provided by wire services or networks. The site should be of practical use to the general public and maximize online technologies to inform and educate the public and enhance public debate about important daily issues.

What do I need to enter?
  • Submit UP TO 5 examples [this is a change] of functioning, cached or active URLs that demonstrate exceptional news coverage and journalistic skill.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 30 minutes.
  • Entry must include original content.
  • Creativity, clarity, storytelling techniques, and use of audio, video or other Internet technologies will be considered by the judges.
  • A short description is requested.
OVERALL EXCELLENCE
  • To be eligible to compete in this category, TV and Radio Stations must enter the Newscast category and at least one other category.
  • Submit a single entry that contains a copy of the program entered in the Newscast category and additional examples of breaking news, continuing coverage, features and/or other work, including your web presence that reflects the depth and scope of the news organization. Please put the newscast at the end of the submission. Judging will be based on the original work samples and not on the way the entry is produced. Entry must include examples of a robust Web and digital media presence; relevant links may be inserted in the text box provided, or attached in a .pdf and uploaded to the entry form.
  • Entry may be edited (all commercials breaks must be removed).
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • Judging will be based on the original work samples and not on the way the entry is produced.
  • Entry must not exceed length of newscast plus 40 minutes.
  • A written rundown is required for audio and video.

Digital News Organizations

Digital News Organizations must be “pure play” digital organizations that do not feature broadcast material. Digital News Organization entrants are required to send verification of Monthly Unique Visitors. If no verification is sent, RTDNA reserves the sole right to reclassify the submission without prior notice to the entrant.

Small Digital News Organization: 2,499,999 or fewer unique visitors per month.
Large Digital News Organization: 2,500,000 or more unique visitors per month.

As of 2019, both small and large digital entries will be judged at the national level.

Fees
Members: $135 per entry
Non-members: $175 per entry
Entries submitted by February 11 receive a $10 off early-bird discount. 
Entries submitted by February 11 receive a $10 off early-bird discount. Late entries will be accepted with a $40 late fee per entry through Feb. 22 at 5pm ET.

Categories

*New Category* EXCELLENCE IN DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION
This category honors outstanding advocacy journalism tackling the topic of diversity, racial injustice and/or inequality. The storytelling must bring an awareness to an issue(s) and potentially bring about a solution or dialogue.
  • This category honors outstanding advocacy journalism tackling the topic of diversity, racial injustice and/or inequality. The storytelling must bring an awareness to an issue(s) and potentially bring about a solution or dialogue.
  • The piece can be digital, video, audio, or all three, showcasing creative, well executed and groundbreaking coverage of the topic of diversity.
  • Can be a single piece or a series around a single topic.
  • 30-minute time limit.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
PODCAST
Podcasts are defined as digital audio files made available on the internet for downloading to a computer or mobile device, typically available as a series, new installments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.
  • Entry must demonstrate original and outstanding journalistic enterprise on an important issue.
  • Entry may feature a single episode or an edited overview of a series
  • Entry may be edited, and all commercial breaks must be removed.
  • Voice-overs or narratives are permitted only if they were part of the original piece.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 30 minutes.
  • Entrants should also provide an active link to the full podcast series.
BREAKING NEWS COVERAGE
  • NEW RULE: Entry should only contain coverage from first 24 hours after the news event.
  • Submit coverage of a single, unscheduled news event.
  • Submit up to five functioning, cached or active URLs linking to coverage of the single, unscheduled news event.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 20 minutes
INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING
  • Submit up to five functioning, cached or active URLs linking to an entry which must demonstrate original and outstanding journalistic enterprise on an important issue.
  • Entry may include materials from undercover sources, demonstrate extensive research of documents and records, and include records and documentation of allegations made in the report.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 15 minutes.
HARD NEWS
  • Submit up to five functioning, cached or active URLs linking to an entry which consists of a single hard news report that is not breaking news and not primarily investigative in nature.
  • Humorous or soft-topic stories do not belong in this category.
  • Entry may not be entered in the Feature Reporting category.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 10 minutes.
CONTINUING COVERAGE
  • Submit an entry showing continuing coverage of a major developing story over an extended period of time.
  • Submit up to five functioning, cached or active URLs linking to coverage of the major developing story over an extended period of time.
  • The entry should include at least one complete news report.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 30 minutes.
FEATURE REPORTING
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL linking to a single report covering a human-interest or profile subject that is not breaking news or investigative in nature.
  • Entry may not be entered in the Reporting: Hard News category.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 10 minutes.
SPORTS REPORTING
  • Submit a single packaged report reflecting a journalistic endeavor to report on a newsworthy sports-related subject. Anchored sports segments within programs, stand-alone sports programs and play-by-play are not eligible
  • Entry must be unedited.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Entry must not exceed 10 minutes.
EXCELLENCE IN SOUND
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL linking to a single subject reported in a single segment showing creative use of sound to tell a story.
  • Entry must be exactly as it was heard on a digital platform or platforms.
  • "Year-ender" packages are not allowed.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Total run time may not exceed 10 minutes.
EXCELLENCE IN VIDEO
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL linking to a single subject reported in a single segment showing creative use of video to tell a story.
  • Entry must be exactly as it appeared on a digital platform or platforms.
  • "Year-ender" packages are not allowed.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • Total run time may not exceed 10 minutes.
NEWS DOCUMENTARY
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL linking to a single subject reported in a single segment addressing a need or needs of your users.
  • Entry may be edited.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 60 minutes.
EXCELLENCE IN WRITING
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL to an entry demonstrating excellence in writing that conveys the feeling and significance of events to the user. Entry may represent an individual or collaborative effort and may include up to three examples, exactly as it originally appeared.
  • A short description of the entry is requested.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 15 minutes
EXCELLENCE IN INNOVATION
  • This category is designed to award digital news organizations that innovate their product to enhance the quality of journalism and the audience’s understanding of news.
  • Submit a functioning, cached or active URL linking to a single entry that demonstrates an innovative use of content, engagement, technology and/or audience experience. A single entry may include audio or video examples; functioning, cached or active URLs; apps; social feeds; or any other platform that demonstrates innovation in journalism.
  • Audio or video entries must not exceed 30 minutes. If the original entry is longer than 30 minutes, submit only the first 30 minutes. No editing is allowed.
  • A written description explaining how the entry breaks the mold of traditional journalism is required.
OVERALL EXCELLENCE
  • To be eligible to compete in this category, Digital News Organizations must enter at least two other categories.
  • Submit an entry that contains up to ten live or cached URLs linking to examples of breaking news, continuing coverage, features and/or other work that reflects the depth and scope of the news organization. Apps and social feeds may also be submitted as part of the ten examples. Judging will be based on the original work samples and not on the way the entry is produced. Entry must include examples of a robust digital media presence; relevant links may be inserted in the text box provided, or attached in a .pdf and uploaded to the entry form.
  • If the entry includes audio or video content, total run time may not exceed 40 minutes.
  • Judging will be based on the original work samples and not on the way the entry is produced.

FAQ
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Q: Can I enter multiple entries in the same category?
A: Yes and no. Only one Newscast entry and one Overall Excellence entry  can be entered per organization. Stations can enter multiple entries in all other categories.

Q: I am entering network/digital/student — which region should I select?
A: Your category is judged nationally and not impacted by the region you select. Just select your current region to complete the required field on the form.

Q: Can I enter the same entry in more than one category?
A: Yes and no. Stations cannot enter an entry in the Hard News Reporting category and the Feature Reporting category. Organizations can enter the same entry (or parts of the same entry) in all other categories.

Q: Are time limits for each category strictly enforced?
A: Yes. Judges are instructed to only watch or listen up to the allotted time for each entry.

Q: My entry is in multiple links, will it still be accepted?
A: No. Your entry must be submitted in one single, functioning link. If your entry is a composite entry, you must edit your separate stories together, unless the category specifies multiple links will be accepted. (The exception to this rule is the Digital category.)

Q: How long should the link to my entry be active?
A: Entrants are responsible for making sure that entry links are active through at least the end of the award year. If the link is not active at the time of judging, the entry will be disqualified immediately and entry fees will not be refunded. RTDNA encourages entrants to keep links active permanently.

Q: What Region am I in?
A: Please take a look at our map of membership regions. If you are an international entrant you fall under region 14.

Region 1   Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington
Region 2   California, Hawaii, Nevada
Region 3   Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming
Region 4   Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin
Region 5   Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska
Region 6   Oklahoma, Texas
Region 7   Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio
Region 8   Kentucky, N. Carolina, S. Carolina, Tennessee, W. Virgina
Region 9   Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi
Region 10   Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont
Region 11   New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania
Region 12   Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia
Region 13   Florida, Georgia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands

 
Q:        I am an independent journalist, can I still enter the Edward R. Murrow Awards?
A:        Yes.  RTDNA encourages all journalists to enter.  We ask that you enter in the market and medium where your piece was first broadcast. 
 
Q:        My entry is not in English, can I still enter the Edward R. Murrow Awards?
A:        Yes.  Non-English entries are required to include subtitles or English-translated scripts with their piece.
 
Q:        Can I mail my entry to RTDNA?
A:        No. RTDNA will not accept mailed entries.  The entry form is entirely digital and all supporting materials must be provided on the online entry.
 

5 types of common Murrow Award entry mistakes (and how to avoid them)

Watch: Secrets of winning Murrow Award entries.
 

Need help? Contact the award team by email.

Sign up to receive Murrow Awards tips, deadline reminders and updates by email.
 
Previous Winners:

2020 - National | Regional | Student
2019 National | Regional | Student
2018 - National | Regional | Student
2017 - National | Regional | Student
2016 - National | Regional | Student
2015 - National | Regional | Student
2014 - National | Regional
2013 - National | Regional
2012 - National | Regional
2011 - National | Regional
2010 - National | Regional
2009 - National | Regional
2008 - National | Regional
2007 - National | Regional
2006 - National | Regional
2005 - National | Regional
2004 - National | Regional
2003 - National | Regional
2002 - National | Regional
2001 - National | Regional