Knight-Mozilla OpenNews announces 2013 fellows

Knight-Mozilla OpenNews yesterday announced its 2013 class of fellows, who will work as developers and technologists embedded in newsrooms around the world. Fellows spend a year writing code along with reporters, designers and newsroom developers to create new tools for journalism. Fellows for 2013 and their placements include: Brian Abelson, The New York Times Manuel…

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HMDA data updated in the Database Library

The Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data have just been updated in the NICAR Database Library — and we’ll help you turn it into a story. WHAT’S IN IT?This Act requires all banks, savings and loans, savings banks and credit unions with assets of more than $33 million and offices in metropolitan areas to report…

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CAR through the ages

There’s been talk of a couple books IRE put out back in the early 90’s titled 101 (and later 100) Computer-assisted reporting stories. Sadly, there’s only one copy of each here at the home office, both of which we’d like to keep for our archives. However, all of the story questionnaires that are featured in…

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Enter the Philip Meyer contest for a chance to win $500

There are only a couple more weeks until the postmark deadline (Nov. 2) of the Philip Meyer contest and we want to see your work! Three awards are given annually — a first, second and third place — to recognize the best work using techniques that are part of precision journalism, computer-assisted reporting and social…

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Behind the Story: Using tips from sources, data and documents to uncover inflated hospital prices

On Thursday, The Charlotte Observer and the News & Observer in Raleigh won bronze in the Barlett & Steele Awards for Investigative Business Journalism, funded by the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism, for their series “Prognosis: Profits,” in which the reporters dissected the finances of large healthcare institutions and discovered inflated prices, lawsuits against thousands…

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Finishing the CAR story, overcoming initial hurdles

By Laura KrantzGatehouse 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…

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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…

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IRE Conference first-timer

By Mikel SchaeferWVUE-TV New Orleans Following the conclusion of the Boston IRE Conference, I felt compelled to share my experience as an IRE Conference first-timer, especially since I was a fairly rare species at the event. Unlike most attending the three-day conference, I was not an investigative reporter, but one of a handful of television…

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Behind the Story: Battling attorneys and judges for documents

Photo credit:Dean Rutz/The Seattle Times In a season of cutbacks, Seattle Times reporter Christine Willmsen was surprised to see the state government proposing a budget increase. “I noted an add-on of an addition of over $20 million, and I thought that was odd,” Willmsen said. The budget listed a line item increase for civil commitment,…

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Finding out what public figures don’t want you to know

By Jon [email protected] Sex sells. But it sometimes buys, too. Online.  As described in the panel “Hidden databases: Mining the private parts of public officials,” the trick is learning how to uncover the online footprint of public figures and track the nefarious deeds they might do under the cover of online alter-egos. Russ Ptacek of…

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