Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "Amazon" ...

  • WSJ: Big Tech's Hidden Costs

    Congress and federal regulators do very little to police Amazon, Facebook and other big technology platforms that dominate the global economy and modern life. The companies say it's not their responsibility to protect consumers from online hazards, due to carve-outs in federal law for digital platforms. The Wall Street Journal investigated the many ways tech companies are passing on that responsibility—and the potential risks—to unwitting consumers. The Journal's reporting stopped Facebook from collecting sensitive personal data including users' menstrual cycles and heart rates; alerted parents to the lack of vetting for prospective nannies with police records including child abuse, sexual assault and murder; and forced Amazon to remove thousands of federally banned and unsafe products including toys with dangerous levels of lead.
  • The New Food Economy and The Intercept: Amazon employees and the safety net

    As food stamps go online in the coming years, Amazon is poised to collect a large proportion of sales from the $70-billion program. Yet our investigation found that in at least five states, the company's own employees are disproportionately reliant on the program to feed their families. We framed these findings in contrast to the vast subsidies states and local governments provide the company in exchange for "good" jobs. Months before the conclusion of Amazon’s HQ2 search prompted mainstream outlets to wonder whether or not the company’s presence really benefits the communities that compete to host its operations, our reporting revealed that taxpayers subsidize Amazon's expansion every step of the way. It remains to be seen whether or not those investments pay off.
  • Machine Bias

    With our Machine Bias series, we are investigating the algorithms that are increasingly making decisions about our lives, from what news or ads we see online to what sentences are meted out for crimes. Algorithms are often proprietary "black boxes," raising important questions about transparency and due process. By collecting and analyzing the output of these systems, we set out to reverse-engineer and make accountable some of the algorithms that were having the biggest impact on people’s lives. Our investigative methods included linear regression, statistical analysis, and the creation of our own software. Among the series’ findings were evidence of racial bias in risk assessment systems, and the preferential treatment of Amazon’s own products in its so-called open market.
  • Ecuador’s Secret Oil Road

    An exclusive investigation and report exposing an illegal oil access road cut deep into the Amazon rainforest, the existence of which Ecuador’s government had denied. The investigation showed, for the first time, video of the road and heavy vehicles driving along it, and included a rare interview with Ecuador's Hydrocarbon Secretary. Published by Reported.ly, a journalism startup launched in January 2015.
  • Power Wars: Inside Obama's Post-9/11 Presidency

    Power Wars is a comprehensive investigative history of national security legal policymaking during the Obama presidency. Based on interviews with more than 150 officials and access to numerous internal documents, it takes readers behind the scenes to explain why the administration governed as it did on surveillance, drone strikes, Guantanamo, interrogations, military commissions, secrecy, leak investigations, war powers, and executive power. Bringing large amounts of new information to light about internal deliberations and never-before-reported memos and events, it equips readers to grapple with the recurring accusation that Obama has acted like Bush and to understand the legacy of both presidencies. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0316286575
  • Relentless Strike: The Secret History of Joint Special Operations Command

    Relentless Strike is the first full-length history of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), the secret military organization that, away from the public eye, has become the military’s main effort in the wars of the 21st century. JSOC runs many of the United States’ most sensitive missions and commands its most secret “special mission units,” including SEAL Team 6, Delta Force and the even more secret “Army of Northern Virginia.” The book contains dozens of scoops and sheds new light on every period of JSOC’s history and virtually every major mission it has conducted. http://www.amazon.com/Relentless-Strike-History-Special-Operations/dp/1250014549/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1452551893&sr=1-1&keywords=Relentless+Strike
  • Green Going Gone: The Tragic Deforestation of the Chaco

    This corporate accountability story combined original satellite analysis with traditional on-the-ground investigative reporting to examine links between deforestation and the world’s largest agricultural commodities traders: The U.S.-based Cargill, Bunge and ADM. The story paid special attention to Cargill, North America’s largest private corporation and the commodities trader that has spent millions on its corporate sustainability program and aggressively promotes itself as a nature conservationist. Reported from Paraguay, the story compared the Big Ag traders’ soybean export operations in Paraguay with those in Brazil, where the three companies have won praise for upholding the Soy Moratorium, a voluntary ban on expanding the Amazon’s soybean frontier. The Moratorium is widely credited with slowing rainforest clearing in Brazil over the last eight years. In neighboring Paraguay during roughly the same timeframe, however, the country’s soybean cropland has expanded by nearly one-third with an additional 2.5 million acres brought into cultivation. This rapid expansion has set off a land rush that is, among other things, propelling the rapid disappearance of South America’s second most bio-diverse forests, the Gran Chaco.
  • Los Nuevos Narcotesoros

    Univision News’ Investigative Unit, presents an in-depth report on the devastating consequences of illegal mining by organized crime in Latin America, taking viewers inside a criminal world where mafias that formerly only trafficked drugs are now exploiting the mineral resources of Mexico, Colombia and Peru to finance their operations and expand their power. Taking its cameras from the Mexican states of Michoacán and Guerrero to different regions of Colombia and the Peruvian Amazon, “Nuevos Narcotesoros” delivers a compelling account of how violent criminal organizations are taking over the extraction of gold and iron ore and victimizing entire communities by extorting, torturing and killing miners who do not conform to their demands, as well as gaining control of local governments through violence and bribery.
  • Tungsten's Tainted Trails

    Bloomberg Markets' reporter Michael Smith spent six months trekking through an Amazon jungle and then tracking Colombian export and tax records. The research resulted in a story revealing that the multinational companies that make BMWs, Ferraris and Porches, as well as smartphone and tablet makers Apple and Samsung, buy products from a supply chain that starts with mining by a terrorist group in Colombia.
  • In Amazon’s Shadow: Online retail giant’s Lehigh Valley temporary staffing agency fights aggressively to keep workers from collecting unemployment

    The temporary staffing firm that recruits workers for an Amazon.com warehouse in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley is one of the most aggressive firms in the state when it comes to challenging unemployment claims. The seasonal nature of the Seattle e-tailer’s business requires it to temporarily double manpower at its warehouse during the holiday shopping season. That volatile employment demand leaves the company susceptible to high unemployment costs since the tax rates businesses pay to support the unemployment system are higher for employers that frequently let workers go. Amazon shelters itself from those higher cost by using a temporary staffing firm. And the staffing firm, Integrity Staffing Solutions, keeps its own costs in check by aggressively fighting claims of former warehouse workers. The result is people who lost their jobs as a result of illness or injury facing challenges when applying for a benefit to which many are entitled.