Pubcaster goes intl.

American Public Radio is planning to become more international in focus and said Monday it will be changing its name to Public Radio International.

The name change will be effective July 1.

The decade-old American Public Radio competes with Washington-based National Public Radio for air time on noncommercial stations. More than 475 stations carry some APR programming each week.

With the new format, the radio network hopes to bring its listeners a more worldwide perspective. The network also plans to develop new programs geared to younger and more culturally diverse audiences.

Minneapolis-based APR is known for such weekly shows as “A Prairie Home Companion” with Garrison Keillor, “Mountain Stage” and the comedy quiz show, “Whad’ya Know?” It also distributes “Marketplace,” a daily journal of business and economic news.

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