Eric Deggans

Eric Deggans is NPR's first full-time TV critic.

Deggans came to NPR in 2013 from the Tampa Bay Times, where he served a TV/Media Critic and in other roles for nearly 20 years. A journalist for more than 20 years, he is also the author of Race-Baiter: How the Media Wields Dangerous Words to Divide a Nation, a look at how prejudice, racism and sexism fuels some elements of modern media, published in October 2012, by Palgrave Macmillan.

In August 2013, Deggans guest hosted CNN's media analysis show Reliable Sources, joining a select group of journalists and media critics filling in for departed host Howard Kurtz. Earlier in the same month, he was awarded the Florida Press Club's first-ever Diversity award, honoring his coverage of issues involving race and media. He received the Legacy award from the National Association of Black Journalists' A&E Task Force, an honor bestowed to "seasoned A&E journalists who are at the top of their careers." Deggans serves on the board of educators, journalists and media experts who select the George Foster Peabody Awards for excellence in electronic media.

He also has joined a prestigious group of contributors to the first ethics book created in conjunction with the Poynter Institute for Media Studies for journalism's digital age: The New Ethics of Journalism, published in August 2013, by Sage/CQ Press.

Deggans has won reporting and writing awards from the Society for Features Journalism, American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists, The Florida Press Club and the Florida Society of News Editors. In 2010, he made national headlines interviewing former USDA official Shirley Sherrod at the NABJ's summer convention in San Diego, leading a panel discussion that was covered by all the major cable news and network TV morning shows.

Named in 2009, as one of Ebony magazine's "Power 150" – a list of influential black Americans which also included Oprah Winfrey and PBS host Gwen Ifill – Deggans was selected to lecture at Columbia University's prestigious Graduate School of Journalism in 2008 and 2005. He has lectured or taught as an adjunct professor at Loyola University, California State University, Indiana University, University of Tampa, Eckerd College and many other colleges.

His writing has also appeared in the New York Times online, Salon magazine, CNN.com, the Washington Post, Village Voice, VIBE magazine, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, Chicago Sun-Times, Seattle Times, Emmy magazine, Newsmax magazine, Rolling Stone Online and a host of other newspapers across the country.

From 2004 to 2005, Deggans sat on the then-St. Petersburg Times editorial board and wrote bylined opinion columns. From 1997 to 2004, he worked as TV critic for the Times, crafting reviews, news stories and long-range trend pieces on the state of the media industry both locally and nationally. He originally joined the paper as its pop music critic in November 1995. He has worked at the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey and both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Press newspapers in Pennsylvania.

Now serving as chair of the Media Monitoring Committee for the National Association of Black Journalists, he has also served on the board of directors for the national Television Critics Association and on the board of the Mid-Florida Society of Professional Journalists.

Additionally, he worked as a professional drummer in the 1980s, touring and performing with Motown recording artists The Voyage Band throughout the Midwest and in Osaka, Japan. He continues to perform with area bands and recording artists as a drummer, bassist and vocalist.

Deggans earned a Bachelor of Arts in political science and journalism from Indiana University.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. DAVID GREENE, HOST: OK, twice a year, journalists and critics gather in Los Angeles for the Television Critics Association press tour. This is two to three weeks of nonstop press conferences offered by television networks, cable channels and streaming companies to show off all their new programs. But here's this - 3 of the 4 biggest broadcast networks say they're not going to bring their top executives to press conferences at January...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. DAVID GREENE, HOST: Journalists in Washington all have something in common it seems. If the name Gwen Ifill ever came up, everyone would have some story about how she remembered a random fact in your life even if you hadn't seen her in a while or how she gave you a reassuring hug at just the right moment. The PBS anchor and longtime Washington journalist died yesterday at age 61 after a battle with cancer. NPR TV critic Eric Deggans...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. MICHEL MARTIN, HOST: We have one more story about the election, this time from the entertainment world. Donald Trump's election prompted a burning question from fans of political satire. What will "Saturday Night Live" say? The show has a long history of defining pivotal elections through parody, and it earned some of its best ratings in years in part because of Alec Baldwin's devastating parody of Donald Trump. "SNL's" first post...

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For Star Trek 's George Takei, it was one of the worst predictions he ever made, and one of the best strokes of luck in his life: Takei, known to fans worldwide as helmsman Hikaru Sulu, originally thought the show would last only one season. "When we were shooting the pilot, Jimmy Doohan [who played engineer Montgomery "Scotty" Scott] said to me, 'Well, George, what do you think about this? What kind of run do you think we'll have?'" says Takei. "And I said, 'I smell quality. And that means...

Constance Zimmer has built a long career playing tough, unsentimental women, including a shady operative on Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and a hard-nosed journalist on Netflix's House of Cards . And the role which earned Zimmer her first Emmy nomination this year — reality TV producer Quinn King on Lifetime's UnREAL — could be TV's most caustic villain. So it's a little surprising that when you ask the actress how she feels about the meaning of her nomination, she almost cries. "It's a...

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(Be warned, intrepid reader: This story contains loads of spoilers regarding every episode from this season's run of Game of Thrones , including Sunday's season finale.) This was the season that Game of Thrones seriously changed its game. Nowhere was that more evident than in Sunday's season finale, the last of 10 episodes that pulled together far-flung storylines and characters spread across the show's mythical seven kingdoms — and beyond. As much as fans have complained recently about ...

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There is a moment, a little ways into tonight's first episode of the Oprah Winfrey Network's new drama, Greenleaf, which sums up all the things that work — and don't — in this ambitious nighttime soap. Merle Dandridge plays the show's heroine, Grace Greenleaf. Her father, Bishop James Greenleaf, and mother, Lady Mae Greenleaf, founded a powerful, predominantly black megachurch in Memphis, Tenn., where she preached as a child. After 20 years away from home, she has come back — for the funeral...

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Summer is always a weird time for the TV industry. These days, in a #PeakTV world where hundreds of scripted shows air every year, there is no downtime. Which means viewers will see a dizzying number of new and returning TV shows this summer on broadcast, cable and online — close to 100 series, by my count. But summer is still a time when most of America eases up on its couch potato habits. So lots of television outlets try to look like they're serving up high quality series and shows, while...

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From the moment you hear Laurence Fishburne's mesmerizing opening narration, intoned over sweeping visuals of a lush African forest, it's obvious History's new Roots miniseries has spared no expense to reinvent a TV classic. But that also begs the question: Why do this at all? Why does the world need a new version of Roots ? "I heard today that fully 50 percent of the population of the United States that is alive now, was not alive in 1977 when the original Roots aired," says LeVar Burton,...

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#NPRreads is a weekly feature on Twitter and on The Two-Way. The premise is simple: Correspondents, editors and producers from our newsroom share the pieces that have kept them reading, using the #NPRreads hashtag. Each weekend, we highlight some of the best stories. From TV critic Eric Deggans: Because I work from an office in the Tampa Bay Times building, I got early word from my former colleague Laura Reiley, the newspaper's food critic, that she was working on something exciting. She told...

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