Personally I consider this a must read for all in the field of data journalism. Andrew Gelman wonders why there were no skeptical, investigative, quantitative journalists decades ago? A growing lists of professionals answers his question: because of the lack of tools; emerging technologies; or better education that leads to more data literacy. The true gold is to be found in the comments – about the new quantitative journalism.
An exhaustive reference to problems seen in real-world data along with suggestions on how to resolve them. As a reporter your world is full of data. And those data are full of problems. This guide presents thorough descriptions and suggested solutions to many of the kinds of problems that you will encounter when working with data.
“If someone cannot explain something in plain English, then we should question whether they really do themselves understand what they profess. If the person in question is communicating ostensibly to a non-specialist audience using specialist terms out of context, the first question on our lips should be: “Why?”” In the words the influential theoretical physicist Richard Feynman: “It is possible to follow form and call it science, but that is pseudoscience.”
Economist, writer and presenter of Radio 4’s More or Less, Tim Harford, has identified the habit of some politicians as not so much lying – to lie means having some knowledge of the truth – as “bullshitting”: a carefree disregard of whether the number is appropriate or not. The Guardian is happy to present a guide for spotting dodgy statistics.
The newspaper has been getting serious about the graphs its produces. This article covers some of the changes the newsroom made concerning their data visualisations: different tools (D3!), more mobile, graphics made for social media, and a monthly column on charts.
Belgium data journalist Maarten Lambrechts shares his thoughts on why explorables are the future, and what makes an explorable explanation great.
Two veteran journalists offer practical tips that reporters in even the smallest newsrooms can use to good effect for their everyday digging. 25 tips on how to be focused on finding great characters and cases to bring your story to life.
As long as significant numbers of transparency advocates are engaged constructively on the business of getting open data releases out, the pace of significant transparency reforms will be slowed. Overly-friendly collaboration between governments and transparency advocates sucks the oxygen out of the room. And we need that oxygen to fuel the fires that can burn down the doors to the state, and to parasitic organizations like anonymous shell companies that are dependent upon inaction by the state.
Chances are, you probably think your mind works pretty well. But you’d be wrong. Our brains fool us all the time. And we typically have no idea that it’s happening. At Propublica, Lena Groeger explains how graphics, including charts, interactives and other visual tools, can help show us our mind’s shortcomings.
“There are a bunch of skills needed in building news apps, but at the most abstract level they fall into three buckets: Code, Design, and Journalism. Recruit people who have at least two of those skills and be willing to teach them the third.” Demand journalism skills, and the willingness to learn and other tips for new hires for your data journalism team.