#Dataharvest/EIJC19 day one – Digital security in cross-border investigation

By Katrine Juel Friis 

After lunch, Tech & data team leader at CORRECTIV Anne-Lise Bouyer, Chief Technology Officer at ICIJ Pierre Romera and Tech Coordinator at OCCRP Friedrich Lindenberg give tips for how to secure your cross-border investigation.

Digital security is very important in cross-border collaborations, but there are different tools and process’ to approach this. Firstly, you need to take into account the level of security needed in the communication and the level of tech-experience within the cross-border group. Secondly, it is important to use a secure team chat software, where the panel takes the website Slack as an example.

When communicating with each other on a daily basis, Facebook is a no go. Instead, the panel recommended Signal, Whatsapp and Telegram.

Pierre also underlined that ICIJ is there to help you: “Another way to secure yourself and your partners are to come to us.” International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) is an organisation and a global network of reporters and media organizations.

The panel was asked if they ever compromised with security in their work, where Pierre Romera then says:

“Some of our new colleagues received a fake invitation-mail the day they arrived at ICIJ. That was a big problem for us, and very difficult to handle.”

However, if you suddenly end up having not secured for example your data, it is very useful to have made an emergency guide explaining what to do in these kinds of situations.

Friedrich Lindenberg ended the panel session on a happy note with a smile on the face by saying:

“If you want to be totally secure, don’t be an investigative reporter. There is always a risk.”

#Dataharvest/EIJC19 day one – exploring Networks with Graph Database

By Katrine Juel Friis 

The investigative and data journalist at Financial Times, Leila Haddou, started the day by guiding us through the program for graph database Neo4j.

It is a very useful tool to find connections or patterns within data. This has for example been used in the paradise papers investigations. It gives you a good overview of huge networks for example between politicians and donators.

You can find the slides and guide for building a database here.

#Dataharvest/EIJC19 day one – how to get started as a data-journalist

By Jannie Møller Hartley

On this first panel of the #EIJC19 the 3 panellists give great advice on how to get started with data-journalism.

The first speaker Carmen Arguilar Carcia, data journalist at Sky News, explains how data adds value to stories. For example, she says “data can make quite simple stories more illustrative for the users.” For example she did a story on which MP’s changed their minds to Brexit.

The second thing data is good for, she says, is that you can use it for hypothesis testing. For example, if you have a feeling that Oscar winners are mostly men and that women are older when they win. For Carmen this became the project of “The anatomy of Oscars Winners”, which was good for testing and proving this hypothesis.

Finally, Carmen points out, that data can give context to the stories, and data can be used to estimate the size of the problem. This she used, for example in a story mapping crime rates in the UK.

Next on the panel is Brant Houston, who has been teaching data journalism for years and worked on data journalism primarily in the US. His first important advice is: “Remember multi-sourcing of data sets, do the stories on at least 3 data- sets, they give you different viewpoints of the story. And you still need to interview and observe,” Brant Houston says.

Furthermore, Houston points out, start simple, use a small dataset and a dataset that has been used before. This is to avoid having to do too much cleaning, which he describes as “the most boring part of data-journalism”.

Next up is Nils Mulvad, who is co-founder of the Global Network for Investigative Journalism and other international networks such as Farmsubsidy.org.

Nils starts off by emphasising the problem with data journalism and investigative journalists working in silos.

“But imagine if we went 100 years back and someone said, hey I’m good at using the phone, I can do all the phone interviews! Data journalists need to think in journalistic terms and the journalist need to understand data,” Nils Mulvad emphasises.

For Nils it’s all about asking the simple question. For example, in the work he has done for Greenpeace, they simply asked: How big a part of European subsidies are going to life stock?

“The EU was saying that this was not much, but by putting data on what land is used for together with how much of this is subsidised we were able to show that 70 percent of all subsidies were going to livestock.” This amounted to a fifth of the EU budget – more than £24bn of taxpayer money going to support livestock farming across Europe.

Perhaps more surprisingly, Mulvad towards the end adviced the room to not fill your story with data, but instead find the people in the data, and he warns that beginners in data journalism tend to fill their stories with boring data.

“Find the people in the stories and tell the stories through them, rather than through the data,” he said.

Center for Undersøgende Journalistik holder filmvisning og debat 4. oktober

Filmvisning og debat: Når journalister sætter livet på spil

IKH og CUJ viser dokumentar-filmen ’Courage’, og du er inviteret!

Om filmen: De er dedikeret til journalistikken, men er under massivt pres fra regeringer, virksomheder og kriminelle. De bruger undersøgende værktøjer til at kæmpe imod korruption og uretfærdigheder. De afslører, hvad magthaverne forsøger at skjule. Og de risikerer at komme i fængsel, at blive udsat for tortur eller at blive slået ihjel for deres journalistik. ’Courage – journalism is not a crime’ handler om journalisterne Mehman Huseynov, Erdem Gül og Lawi Weng fra henholdsvis Aserbajdsjan, Tyrkiet og Myanmar – lande, hvor pressefriheden, uafhængige medier og ytringsfriheden er truet.

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