NPR News

When oil prices shot up a few years ago, many transportation and delivery businesses started adding fuel surcharges to their prices.

Now, fuel prices are plunging, but lots of those surcharges still linger, and consumer advocates are crying foul.

The drop in the cost of oil is a huge factor in the airline industry, where 30 percent of all expenses are for fuel. But airlines, along with other industries with large fuel expenses, have been slow to respond with lower prices.

The ongoing measles outbreak in California now stands at 92 cases.

The spread of the highly infectious disease has sparked a debate about people who voluntarily opt out of vaccines or decline to have their children vaccinated.

Many people have no choice. They can't be vaccinated for medical reasons. They rely on the people around them to be vaccinated to prevent the spread of infectious disease.

The Krawitt family in Marin County, Calif., is taking action to try to increase rates of vaccination in their community because 6-year-old Rhett can't be vaccinated.

The Academy Awards are coming this month, and if you're still trying to see all the Oscar-nominated films, it may be easier to find them in China than in the U.S.

A few weeks ago, the films flooded into the pirated-DVD store down the street from my apartment in Shanghai. It happens like clockwork every year.

I asked T.J. Green, an American executive who runs a small movie theater company here in China, to visit the store and explain what was happening.

This week figures to be a big one in the debate about how to regulate the Internet.

Yesterday the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission announced he'll try to overrule laws in two states that restrict community-owned broadband networks. Later this week, he's expected to propose exactly what President Obama asked for last year: reclassifying the Internet under regulations known in the parlance of telecom wonks as Title II.

The year started well and has only improved for Rupert Murdoch, the media magnate atop the twin corporate holdings of News Corp. and 21st Century Fox.

With caustic commentary on Twitter, Murdoch helped make the case that former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney should depart the hustings. Through his tabloids, he has argued for a new agenda for the struggling conservative governments his publications had championed in Australia and the U.K. In all three instances, the octogenarian corporate chief demonstrated his relevance and asperity.

There are some cities you can identify with just an accent, including New York.

But linguists say that those who speak in the classic New York tongue are part of a dying breed.

To find them, filmmaker Heather Quinlan went accent hunting around the city, holding a sign that reads, "Do you have a New York accent? Then talk to me." She directed If These Knishes Could Talk: The Story of the New York Accent, a documentary about the decline of many of New York's well-known accents.

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

As the economy continues to recover, economists are seeing stark differences between people with high school and college degrees. The unemployment rate is nearly twice as high for Americans with a high school diploma as for those with a four-year college degree or more.

Any chef can whip up an egg over-easy, fried or poached. But what about unboiled?

Leave that to a group of scientific eggsperts at the University of California, Irvine, the University of Western Australia and Flinders University. Recently, they figured out how take an egg from a fresh to a boiled back to an unboiled state.

If you were wondering, the unboiled result doesn't much resemble the original egg at all.

On Monday, the first 12 volunteers received an experimental Ebola vaccine in Liberia, launching vaccine trials there. Over the next year or so, scientists hope to inject 27,000 volunteers. The goal is to test two different shots that could protect people from the deadly disease.

On a mountaintop in Chile, excavators have just started work on a construction site. It will soon be home to a powerful new telescope that will have a good shot at finding the mysterious Planet X, if it exists.

"Planet X is kind of a catchall name given to any speculation about an unseen companion orbiting the sun," says Kevin Luhman, an astronomer at Penn State University.

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