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Guide Resource

Online Research Guide with Henk van Ess

Online research expert Henk van Ess has created a seven-chapter guide that offers reporters step-by-step instructions on how to use social media search to perform investigations of people and subjects and he’s also created a detailed tutorial on using facial recognition technology and best practices for putting these tools together in verifying claims online.

Guide Resource

GIJN’s Updated Guide to Planespotting and Flight Tracking

Investigative journalists have long used information about airplanes to uncover corruption, follow wars, track government officials, and point out the levels of greenhouse gases emitted. GIJN has now revised and updated its reporting guide to planespotting and tracking flights around the world.

Guide Resource

GIJN’s Guide to Undercover Reporting

In countries without public record transparency rules or strong source protection laws, going undercover can be one of the few tools reporters have to reveal public interest stories.

Resource

Four Quick Ways to Verify Images on a Smartphone

GIJN has updated our popular step-by-step guide on verifying images to help find out whether the photo you saw on social media is the real thing. Try out some simple-to-use free tools — including TinEye, Google Reverse Image Search, Photo Sherlock, and Fake Image Detector — to check the source of a picture and whether it has been manipulated.

Resource Tipsheet

The Forensic Methods Reporters Are Using to Reveal Attacks by Security Forces

The excessive force used against anti-racism protesters around the world, in the wake of the killing of George Floyd in the US, reveals the need for more visual forensic skills in newsrooms to hold police to account. GIJN identified 12 tools and 12 methods that proved effective in several recent investigations that exposed harm done by security forces.

Guide Resource

Land Ownership Records: So Useful, but Challenging to Find

Finding out who owns land can be tough. While property registration systems exist in almost all countries, the quality and availability of the information vary widely. World Bank experts estimate that only 30% of the world’s population has a legally registered title to their land, a widely quoted figure that Bank officials stress is a […]

Guide Resource

Tracking Ships at Sea

More than 90,000 commercial ships make up the world’s commercial fleet, their locations closely tracked and the resulting data available for free. GIJN has compiled a comprehensive list of resources to track ships (including big yachts and fishing boats). We link to four dozen valuable sources of information. It’s possible to learn where ships are, […]

Resource

Fact-Checking & Verification

Bellingcat’s Online Investigation Toolkit with resources on image and video verification, social media search, searching people, maps and satellites, and more. Updated 2023. GIJN’s Guide to Fact-Checking Investigative Stories by Nils Hanson (2021) GIJN’s Four Quick Ways to Verify Images on a Smartphone by Raymond Joseph. (2021) Making Stories Ironclad & Bulletproof Line-by-Line, by Nils […]

Resource Tipsheet

Online Research Tools

Online Research Tools and Investigative Techniques by the BBC’s ace online sleuth Paul Myers has long been a starting point for online research by GIJN readers. His website, Research Clinic, is rich in research links and “study materials.” Here’s a tipsheet about finding people online that Myers presented at a 2019 GIJN webinar. And a […]

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Advanced Guide on Verifying Video Content

Verifying video materials should be a routine part of reporting, but knowing how to use the digital tools to verify fake content is just one part of the skill. The creative techniques behind video verification are even more important.

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FOIA This! — Digging Out Government Spending

Tracking down local government expenses is a recurrent theme for many successful freedom of information requests. Some recent examples suggest that quite a variety of information is potentially available — about credit card charges, salaries, retirement parties, and even costs of leak investigations. Have a great story you developed using a FOI/RTI request? Send it to us at freeinfo@email.gwu.edu. We’re currently looking for examples regarding immigration.

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