Work Better Track: How to learn from a fail

  • Event: 2018 IRE Conference
  • Speakers: Ziva Branstetter of The Washington Post; Tyler Dukes of WRAL-Raleigh; Adam Playford of Tampa Bay Times
  • Date/Time: Thursday, Jun. 14 at 9:00am
  • Location: Oceans 5-7
  • Audio file: No audio file available.

Investigative work is often complex, detail-oriented and executed over weeks or months. Without a system in place to prevent errors along the way, these factors that can contribute to mistakes in your final product and undermine your impact. To guard against errors, you'll need to take concrete steps to ensure accuracy during every step of the reporting process. We'll show you our tried and true methods — including document corroboration, source vetting, script footnoting and final accuracy checks — for inoculating stories from errors. And because mistakes do happen, we'll detail what we've learned from our own missteps and discuss how to respond responsibly and with transparency. 

Speaker Bios

  • Ziva leads a team at The Washington Post focused on business investigations and enterprise. She previously worked as a senior editor at Reveal and spent more than 20 years at the Tulsa World, where she and Cary Aspinwall were 2015 finalists for the Pulitzer Prize in local reporting. That same year, they founded The Frontier, an independent investigative newsroom in Tulsa. Ziva is serving her third term as an IRE board member.

  • Tyler Dukes (@mtdukes) is an investigative reporter at WRAL News in Raleigh, N.C., where he specializes in data and public records. In 2017, he completed a fellowship at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University and currently teaches at Duke University's DeWitt Wallace Center for Media & Democracy. Prior to joining WRAL, he worked as managing editor for Duke University’s Reporters’ Lab, a project to reduce the costs of investigative journalism.

  • Adam Playford is a deputy editor of the Tampa Bay Times. He runs the paper's investigative team and oversees watchdog reporting across the newsroom. @adamplayford

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