Jan 22 2017

The Uncounted: The deadly epidemic America is ignoring

Fifteen years after the U.S. declared drug-resistant infections to be a grave threat to public health, our investigation found tens of thousands of deaths are going uncounted by public health authorities, because state and government agencies remain unwilling or unable to impose basic reporting requirements on a healthcare industry that often hides the problem. The Uncounted.

Jul 07

The Brothel Next Door

Screen Shot 2015-07-07 at 7.18.56 AMMaryland officials pledged three years ago to improve anti-trafficking efforts by collecting and sharing evidence of the problem from “every part of government.” They never followed through. So Capital News Service at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism did its own examination. Student reporters pored over thousands of pages of police records, prosecution data and court files. The investigation found widespread evidence of human trafficking but few convictions….

The Brothel Next Door

Sep 05

Water’s Edge: The crisis of rising sea levels

Screen Shot 2014-09-05 at 8.02.48 AMAs the seas rise, a slow-motion disaster gnaws at America’s shores.

A Reuters analysis finds that flooding is increasing along much of the nation’s coastline, forcing many communities into costly struggles with a relentless foe, while Congress debates whether climate change is real and outdated government policies provide a perverse incentive for continued development of the coastline.

Jan 31

“Why do they eat in soup kitchens?”

Merrill College students paired with Latvian journalism students to report on soup kitchens in Riga for RE: Baltica, The Baltic Center for Investigative Reporting, which has been documenting poverty and income inequality in the Baltic states.

Dec 21

The Unequal State of America

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The gap between rich and poor has widened in virtually every corner of the nation, a Reuters analysis found. The Unequal State of America examines the impact of government policies on rising inequality and the impact of inequality on people’s lives. Explore what’s happening in your state with the interactive graphics.


Nov 05

The Cruelest Show on Earth

The Cruelest Show on Earth in Mother Jones documents decades of deaths, illness and injury in the famed herd of performing elephants at Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.


Mar. 5, 2015: Feld Entertainment announced that it will phase out elephants in the Ringling Bros. traveling circus by 2018 “to meet shifting consumer preferences.” I talked about it with Warren Olney on NPR.

Nov. 28, 2011: Feld Entertainment agreed to pay a $270,000 penalty — the largest ever under the Animal Welfare Act — to settle numerous alleged violations for mistreatment of elephants and other circus animals.After USDA announced the settlement, Feld released a statement, noting it was not admitting anything but would “enhance” its animal care. The historic penalty ended decades of USDA inaction on abuse allegations against Ringling in inspections, investigations and through long-standing efforts by animal welfare groups — such as PETA, ASPCA and the Animal Protection Institute.

Image by David Cook Wildlife Photography

Apr 30

Twitter: Rumor-monger/fact-checker

I asked my daughter where she got her news. To my surprise, she said from Twitter. And she didn’t mean @washingtonpost — but through Tweets from friends in her Twitter community. I asked how she could be sure the news was true. She explained that it’s vetted aggressively by the crowd.



But where do they go to check out rumors? What sources do they consider credible? Andy Carvin, NPR online community organizer, shows how journalistic social media communities — communities that use reporting skills and values to collect and disseminate information — can play a crucial role. His tick-tock (or Tweet-tock) of a fact-check collaboration by him and his followers provides a playbook for how to do it right:
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