Shop Notes

'Business of Disaster' finalist in IRE awards

Posted: April 14, 2017 | Tags: journalism

“House_Sandy”

FRONTLINE photo

"Business of Disaster" looked at houses in New Jersey and New York that were damaged during Superstorm Sandy.

 

Business of Disaster,” the PBS FRONTLINE program about ongoing housing problems more than three years after the devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy, was a finalist in the IRE awards this year in the large broadcat/video category and also in the large radio/audio category. 

Congratulations to Rick Young, Emma Schwartz and Fritz Kramer — the FRONTLINE team based here at the Workshop and the School of Communication — and to Laura Sullivan of NPR, who was the correspondent on the program ...

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The back-story behind Workshop's first data project on banks

Posted: March 16, 2017 | Tags: BankTracker

“Wendell

Photoby Jeff Watts, AU

Wendell Cochran 

This month we’re celebrating the eighth anniversary of BankTracker, our long-running series on the financial health of the nation’s banks and credit unions.  

In 2009, Wendell Cochran, a founding editor of the Workshop, wanted to track the impact of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the $250 billion package that was signed into law in October 2008 by President Bush to stabilize the financial system. 

Using data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), BankTracker allows readers to search by the name of their bank or by credit union to see assets ...

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Washington journalists on Trump’s war on the press

Posted: March 13, 2017 | Tags: interns

Trump’s war on the press is a political strategy and it’s working, Margaret Sullivan, The Washington Post's media columnist, said at the 2017 Missouri-Hurley Symposium at the National Press Club last week.

“It’s not unintentional,” Sullivan said when talking with seven other Washington journalists about the rising tension between the new administration and the media.

"It’s not just because this is a group of rookies,” she added.

Sullivan said the Trump administration has been strategically pursuing a fight with the media and “set up the press as the bad guy.”

Since the first day of ...

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A journalist who sought to democratize data

Posted: March 9, 2017 | Tags: data

“David_buttons”

IRW photo

Data Editor Jennifer LaFleur designed “D-squared” buttons to honor her friend and co-trainer David Donald.

Earlier this year, some of the nation’s top data journalists flew to Washington to pay their respects to one of their own. My Investigative Reporting Workshop colleague David Donald, former data editor at the watchdog journalism nonprofit Center for Public Integrity, died in December after battling cancer. His colleagues gathered to celebrate his life and remarkable professional achievements.

Before he became ill, Donald and his colleagues had been developing a new, more democratic vision for data journalism, one that would invite the ...

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Sharing data and ideas

Posted: March 3, 2017 | Tags: IRE

Jacksonville, Florida, was the host city for this year’s Computer-Assisted Reporting conference, one of two annual conferences run by the Investigative Reporters and Editors. The March 2-5 program included practical tips, story ideas and computer training. Tipsheets and links are online, too.

Chuck Lewis, Workshop founding executive editor, moderated “Doing data journalism under duress” on March 3, which covered collaboration across borders and ways to make data more globally accessible. 

The three speakers on the panel brought unique experiences and skills: Anatoliy Bondarenko, head of data apps team at Texty.org.ua; Rigoberto Carvajal, the International Consortium of Investigative ...

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Journalism in the Trump era

Posted: Feb. 6, 2017 | Tags: interns

“panel”

Photo by Sheila Xuejiao Wang, IRW

From left: Robert Costa, Kristen Soltis Anderson and Trevor Thrall talk about the challenges of covering the new Trump administration.

Donald Trump spared no time battling the American media. Not only did he call the media “dishonest” the first day after taking office, but Sean Spicer, his press secretary, held the first briefing to accuse the media of “deliberately false reporting” on the inauguration’s crowd size.

 “In America, the president reigns for four years, and journalism governs forever and ever,” said Nikolav Malyarov, the moderator of one of PressReader’s forums on political ...

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Becoming a journalist

Posted: Feb. 6, 2017 | Tags: interns

A panel of media professionals shared their back stories with reporters and journalism students at a PressReader forum on political coverage recently in Washington.

PressReader is a Canadian-based news community that offers all-you-can-read news access to newspapers and magazines around the globe.

Rick Klein, political director of ABC News, said it was the variety of experiences that drew him into the business.

 “There’s something about the ability to go and ask questions of people and experience things and learn something that to me is always compelling,” Klein said.

Ashley Codianni, director of social publishing at CNN, said she found ...

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Recent news

Posted: Feb. 2, 2017 | Tags: Charles Lewis

Executive Editor Charles Lewis was interviewed for a New York Times story Jan. 28, and commented on the first week of the Trump presidency and its widely identified falsehoods: 

“Executive

Photo by Jeff Watts, AU

Charles Lewis 

“We’ve never seen anything this bizarre in our lifetimes, where up is down and down is up and everything is in question and nothing is real,” said Lewis, the founder of the Center for Public Integrity and the author of “935 Lies: The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity,” a book about presidential deception.

You can read the ...

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Summer 2017 interns

Posted: Jan. 19, 2017 | Tags: interns

The Investigative Reporting Workshop, a nonprofit news organization based at the American University School of Communication in Washington, is looking for smart, engaged students from around the country for internships in the summer of 2017.

Positions include researchers, data journalists, videographers, graphic designers and web producers. Undergraduate and graduate students are welcome to apply. Preferred majors include journalism, communication, film, public policy, public health, history or economics.

The Workshop publishes in-depth stories about government and corporate accountability, on topics ranging widely from the environment and health to national security and the economy. The Workshop pairs experienced professional reporters and editors ...

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Russia's disinformation strategy

Posted: Jan. 19, 2017 | Tags: journalism

“Louise

Photo by Jeff Watts, AU

Louise Lief

Louise Lief, our scholar in residence, writes about Russia's manipulation of news and information, not only in U.S. elections but in other countries as well.

Lief's analysis in The Columbia Journalism Review says Russians have "pioneered new, computerized ways to pollute the information ecosystem. The Russians were among the earliest to massively scale up and deploy trolls and bots, Potemkin communities of fake users that support or oppose various positions." 

She cites examples in the Urkraine, Moldova and Lithuania that range from partially fake news (facts but false conclusions) to ...

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Recent Posts

'Business of Disaster' finalist in IRE awards

“Business of Disaster,” the PBS FRONTLINE program about ongoing housing problems more than three years after the devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy, was a finalist in the IRE awards this year in both the large broadcast/video category and also in the large radio/audio category. 

The back-story behind Workshop's first data project on banks

In BankTracker, our long-running series that debuted in March 2009, we analyzed publicly available data to report on the financial health of the nation’s banks and credit unions. Though the project met with resistance from the banking association at the time, the updates continue to be welcomed by readers.

Washington journalists on Trump’s war on the press

Trump’s war on the press is a political strategy and it’s working, Margaret Sullivan, the media columnist for The Washington Post, said at the 2017 Missouri-Hurley Symposium at the National Press Club last week.


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