Internet presents new challenges for journalism in the era of fake news
MEXICO CITY – Prominent Mexican journalist Carmen Aristegui said the internet presents “a great light and a great shadow ” for journalism in an era of fake news.
On the opening day of a journalism TechCamp in Mexico City, Aristegui acknowledged “there is serious questioning” of the work of journalists.
“We have to investigate, corroborate and disseminate information,” she said. “We have to learn day by day (about new technology) without turning our backs on content. It is here that professional journalism plays a crucial role.”
InquireFirst Executive Director S. Lynne Walker joined the TechCamp as an instructor, with “boots-on-the-ground” investigative journalism training for almost 60 reporters from Mexico, Guatemala, El Savador and Honduras.
The TechCamp gave journalists new digital tools and suggested a range of financing methods to produce and publish in-depth reporting.
“It is important that we journalists find ways to continue professionalizing ourselves and to be ethically independent,” Aristegui said. “It is essential for democracy.”
U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Roberta Jacobson inaugurated the December 7-8, 2017, TechCamp by expressing concern about the alarming increase in murders of Mexican journalists.
“We all know the dangers of doing journalism,” Jacobson told reporters and editors at the TechCamp, commending them for “professionalism and courage.”
She denounced the murders of Mexican journalists Javier Valdez, an award-winning journalist who founded the newspaper Riodoce in Sinaloa state, and investigative journalist Miroslava Breach. And she expressed concern that until there is a concerted effort by the Mexican government to investigate and prosecute attacks on journalists, the killings will continue. Read more
Walter Baranger, former senior editor of news operations at The New York Times, joined InquireFirst as Vice President in August 2017.
Baranger took a buyout from The Times earlier this year and headed to California to join the journalism faculty of California State University, Fullerton. We're pleased that he also joined InquireFirst as we expand our organization.
In his role as InquireFirst Vice President, Baranger will focus on strategies for growing our nonprofit news organization, which offers professional development programs for journalists in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Baranger has a deep understanding of the challenges facing journalists in Latin America and around the world. During his 27-year tenure at The Times, he logged more than 3 million airline miles traveling to more than 60 countries and nearly all of the U.S. states in support of the Times newsroom.
If you haven’t already met Baranger in his travels across the globe, check out his bio.
Fake News and the Future of Journalism
Robert Hernandez, InquireFirst board member and journalism professor at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, talks about the challenges journalists face in this troubling new environment of fake news. During his TedXTalk, Hernandez underscores the need for credible, accurate reporting.
Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop in San Francisco underscores need for regional science journalism network
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – The 2017 Latin America edition of the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop sparked a commitment by more than 70 journalists from 15 countries to begin building a regional science journalism network.
The need for a network, which has long been a priority for workshop organizers Fundación Ealy Ortiz A.C. of México City and InquireFirst of San Diego, Calif., was underscored by seasoned science journalists who are looking beyond their borders to cover regional science, public health and environmental issues.
As global issues such as climate change, Zika virus and water shortages increasingly dominate the news, Latin American and Caribbean journalists agreed that their stories would be strengthened by collaboration across international borders to provide audiences a regional perspective.
InquireFirst and Fundación Ealy Ortiz A.C. organized and directed the 2017 Latin American edition of the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop on October 25, 2017, in San Francisco, Calif., in collaboration with the World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ).
The 2017 international science journalism forum marked the first time the WCSJ held its biennial conference in the United States. Almost 1,400 science journalists from 70 countries attended the Oct. 26-30 WCSJ conference. Read more
Walker and InquireFirst media partner Fundación para el Periodismo team to offer training to investigative journalists in Bolivia
LA PAZ, Bolivia – These were the last days of class for a committed group of journalists who had been studying and reporting and writing all year to earn a masters-level certificate in investigative journalism.
InquireFirst Executive Director Lynne Walker, who worked for several weeks with the journalists on line, traveled to La Paz to instruct them on finding sources and on organizing and writing their stories.
The journalists were working on a wide range of important subjects as part of their final project and thesis. One journalist was working on a profile of a mafia family that controlled bars and table dance operations where human trafficking, prostitution and drug trafficking occurred. Another focused on the city’s lack of attention to crumbling infrastructure and change in climatic conditions that resulted in a dramatic decrease in water supply. A third was investigating the brutal mistreatment of domestic and wild animals and lack of enforcement due to nonexistent government funding. Read more
Will the United States continue to be a country where people can turn on the tap and assume the water that comes out is safe and affordable? In this, the first major report in InquireFirst’s long-term drinking water project, reporter Elizabeth Douglass travels to Lake Station, Indiana, to begin answering that question by exploring the growing pressure on cities and towns to privatize their municipal drinking water systems.
View photos by John Nelson/InquireFirst