This week is Sunshine Week, the annual celebration of open government and access to public information. To honor the occasion, we're unveiling a special video series on the NSA files.
We talked with James Ball, special projects editor at the Guardian, about reporting one of the most high-stakes stories in the last decade.
He discusses the delicate balance between moving quickly and getting the story right. He talks about Edward Snowden's skepticism that the media would be willing to publish the material, and about winning him over and earning more of the documents. The complexity and classified nature of the files made accuracy as challenging as it was essential.
Ball also gets practical during the video series, discussing how building glossaries helped readers understand the NSA stories. He offers suggestions journalists can use to keep their own materials private, and provides pointers for young journalists to succeed in an industry increasingly turning to data-supported stories.
Happy Sunshine Week!