News & Updates

DWC Welcomes 2 Reporters to Research Teams

Mark Stencel joins the Reporters’ Lab as a co-director, with Professor Bill Adair. He will lead research projects on fact-checking as well as political journalism and will manage the Lab’s database of fact-checking websites around the world. Read more about Stencel on the Reporters’ Lab website.

David A. Graham, T’09, a staff writer at The Atlantic, will work with Professor Philip Bennett on expanding the Rutherfurd Living History Program. He plans to research the interview as a journalistic tool to identify the best practices for conducting interviews and the future of it.

Stencel and Graham are each enlisting Duke students to join in research projects. Graham’s students will help with researching, conducting and producing long-form video interviews with notable figures as part of the Rutherfurd Living History project. The undergraduates assisting Stencel will investigate new, digital-friendly ways of presenting information and will track the work of fact-checkers around the world.

Fact-Checking Software Debut

uClaim iCheckA Duke team has developed software to assist journalists in identifying and fact-checking claims made by politicians and other news sources.  The team is presenting their research at the 2014 Computation + Journalism conference in New York on Oct. 24.  Professors Jun Yang and Bill Adair have described the research in an American Journalism Review article.  The uClaim/iCheck team’s research can be found here.

Reporting Ebola

On Thursday, please join us for a ‘pop-up’ event— Reporting Ebola, with journalist Jeff Stern T’07  (Public Policy and Policy Journalism & Media Studies) and moderated by Prof. Ken Rogerson.  Jeff’s reporting was published in the October issue of Vanity Fair:  Hell in the Hot ZoneAlso see Stern’s personal website for more of his reporting and photographs from Afghanistan. Feel free to spread the word!  The event is in the Sanford School, 3-4 pm, Room 05. More Info.

Sarah Cohen on Data Journalism and what reporters should know

In an interview with Journalist’s Resource, Former Duke professor Sarah Cohen, now editor of computer-assisted reporting at the New York Times, talks about her work at Duke and Columbia, and what those preparing to be ‘data journalists’ should know about the field.

Reporters’ Lab Hosts Fact-Checking Summit

factcheckersIn early June, the Reporters’ Lab co-sponsored Poynter’s inaugural Global Fact-Checking Summit at the London School of Economics. Fifty-five journalists from six continents gathered to learn, share best practices and build a community of world-wide fact-checkers. In his opening remarks, organizer and Knight Professor of Computational Journalism Bill Adair told attendees, “Here we are from all over the world and we all have this passion for this unique form of journalism.” Tim Franklin, President of the Poynter Institute, applauded the work of the attendees, “The world needs more clarions of fact-based truth.” Additional conference coverage and video highlights can be seen here and here.

“The Goat Must Be Fed”

goatThe Reporters’ Lab investigates digital tools and the data reporting revolution in the news business. Why do so many news staffs have such a difficult time figuring out how to open these digital toolboxes — even when peers at other organizations have shown what even one data-savvy journalist on staff can accomplish? The resulting report got its title from an interview with Jim Farley, the recently retired news leader at WTOP-FM in Washington, D.C. “We’re live and local, 24/7, 365,” Farley told us. “The goat must be fed.”

Melcher Family Award for Excellence in Journalism

AndrewBeaton2Andrew Beaton T’14, was awarded the 11th annual Melcher Family Award for Excellence in Journalism for his article The Oral History of Tailgate, published in The Duke Chronicle on November 08, 2013. The selection committee of faculty and alumni marked this piece as exemplary, describing it “…as an innovative narrative that, through the voices of more than a dozen sources, provided a thorough and compelling account of the rise and demise of Tailgate. The article reconstructed in intimate and honest terms a chapter of Duke’s cultural history that cast a fair and illuminating light on a tradition revered by some and reviled by others. The depth of the reporting, the skillful assembly of the component parts and the pacing of the story made it a compelling read. This was reflected in the voluminous commentary it provoked in social media among students and alumni. If Tailgate was a symbol of one aspect of life at Duke, this story is an example of the power of journalism to explore broader truths through the lens of a single event.”  See Twitter traffic generated by the story collected here.

Media Fellow Donates Copy of Tunisian Constitution to Duke

olfa_riahiTunisian journalist and Jasmine Revolution activist Olfa Riahi will donate a signed copy of the new constitution of Tunisia and several books on Tunisian history, politics and revolution to the Duke University Libraries. Riahi, participant in the DeWitt Wallace Center’s Media Fellows Program, is a political activist, blogger, investigative reporter and author. Learn more . . .

A New Movement for Structured Journalism

Knight Professor of Computational Journalism Bill Adair wants journalists to reimagine the way they tell news stories. He and some colleagues will discuss their ideas at the Online News Association Conference in September. In the meantime, read his insightful Poynter Online article and share your ideas at #structuredjournalism.

April 14 – DATA+JOURNALISM: A Speaker Series

heerProfessors Bill Adair (Public Policy, DWC) and Jun Yang (Computer Science) have teamed up to present DATA+JOURNALISM: A Speaker series. On January 27,  Jeffrey Heer (Associate Professor, Computer Science & Engineering, University of Washington; and Co-Founder, Trifacta) will speak. The series features journalists and computer scientists leading the national conversation about data and the reinvention of journalism.  These campus talks explore a common challenge: how can we turn raw data in records, transcripts, tweets, and other artifacts of governing and human interactions into useful information and insights? Be sure to watch for upcoming notices about the series, funded by the Information Initiative at Duke (iiD). Contact Shelley Stonecipher for more information.

Transparency in Politics and the Media

Transparency coverThe DeWitt Wallace Center is proud to announce the publication of Transparency in Politics and the Media: Accountability and Open Government. This volume is the result of a Duke/Oxford/Reuters Institute conference held in October 2012 with British and American journalists and scholars, who met to discuss government transparency and the media. Led by former DeWitt Wallace Center director and current Director of the Journalism Program at Stanford University James T. Hamilton, the book features chapters by former Washington Post managing editor and current DeWitt Wallace Center director Philip Bennett and former Knight Professor of the Practice of Journalism and Public Policy and current New York Times reporter Sarah Cohen. While examining how transparency and open government initiatives have affected the accountability role of the press in the US and the UK in recent years, the book explores how policies in these two countries could change in the future to help journalists hold governments more accountable.  Click here for further information about the book.

Leakers or Whistleblowers?

Hayden_Gellman_eventFormer director of the CIA and NSA General Michael Hayden and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Barton Gellman discussed “Leakers or Whistleblowers? National Security Reporting in the Digital Age.” in front of a packed house on November 11th. This 2013 Robert R. Wilson Lecture was sponsored by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security, DeWitt Wallace Center for Media & Democracy, Duke Program in American Grand Strategy, and the Triangle Institute for Security Studies. Video of the event, which was moderated by Professor David Schanzer, can be watched on the Sanford School’s YouTube channel:
View Gellman’s articles and interviews. Read in-depth coverage here and here.