On the Road : August 2012

Cool tools to cover the election

By Doug Haddix
Kiplinger Program director
Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism, Ohio State University

A new mobile app called Ad Hawk created a buzz this weekend during an IRE Election Watchdog Workshop at The Ohio State University. It’s an amazing new public service offered by the nonpartisan Sunlight Foundation in Washington, D.C.

Here’s how it works: When you hear a campaign commercial on TV, radio or the Web, open the Ad Hawk app and press a button on a retro TV logo that says “Identify this ad.” Using a short digital footprint from the recording, the ...

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Finishing the CAR story, overcoming initial hurdles

By Laura Krantz
Gatehouse Media

This summer I attended my first IRE conference, in Boston. I really wanted to learn Microsoft Excel skills and I did, thanks to patient IRE staff. But more importantly, I was inspired by all the ruthless journalists using creative ways to mine for data and writing compelling stories.

I left itching to try it myself. Since June, I have been poking for data in the towns I cover but hit several roadblocks. Thanks to IRE colleagues, I've overcome all of them.

First, I wanted to get payroll data, but the town treasurer said it ...

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Join us in Columbus for an Election Watchdog Workshop

IRE is bringing its Election Watchdog Workshop to Columbus, OH on August 24-25. Arm yourself with the knowledge you need to cover the 2012 elections. Get in-depth tips and strategies to follow the campaign cash as well as help your audience track the behind-the-scenes battle for influence, backgrounding candidates, making sense of the new world of super-PACs and "independent" nonprofit advocacy groups and much more.
 For a schedule and additional information including registration details, please visit our website at http://ire.org/events-and-training/event/520/  

Behind the story: Who Can Vote?

By Leonard Downie Jr.

Weil Family Professor of Journalism, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication

                The News21 national investigation of voting rights in the U. S., which was launched August 12 on its own website, votingrights.news21.com, and in news media around the country, began early this year with a video-conferenced spring semester research seminar operating out of Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Selected student journalists at the Cronkite School and 10 other universities – Syracuse, Harvard, Maryland, North Carolina, Elon, Florida, Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska  and Oregon – interviewed national experts and ...

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