Fellowship for Journos Facing Press Curbs

Reporters working in countries with “restricted press freedom” can apply for a six-month rest and refuge fellowship in Berlin. Supported by the press freedom organization Reporters Without Borders Germany and the taz Panter Foundation, an NGO, the program offers two fellowships a year, allowing reporters “time off to recover from difficult working conditions and to further their professional and personal development.” Eligible applicants will have experienced threats linked to their work or face difficult working conditions in the country where they are based. The deadline is December 31.

Source: Reporters Without Borders Germany / taz Panter Foundation

Posted on: December 16, 2021

Global Training on Climate Change

The World News Association of Publishers is holding a free, two-day online summit to educate and train reporters on how to cover the impacts of climate change around the world. The global training, comprised of five sessions on February 22 – 23, 2022, is accompanied by WAN-IFRA's just-released guidebook on covering the climate crisis. The online summit's agenda will feature sessions on storytelling successes, fundraising tips, collaboration techniques, training and resources, and better organizing news teams to produce responsive and sustained coverage of climate and environmental issues. “Telling this story in words, graphics, data projects, visuals, and videos will require honing new skills from our newsrooms," said World Editors Forum president Warren Fernandez. "Our newsrooms can and must play our part in this grave, even existential crisis, of our times.”

Source: WAN-IFRA

Posted on: December 15, 2021

Pandora Papers: Visualizing the Data

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has now released 13 different graphics to help readers better understand the vast amount of information involved in the Pandora Papers. In its data visualization series, ICIJ compares the raw data files of this record-breaking leak to other notable investigative journalism exposés, like the Panama and Paradise Papers. Also included are graphics detailing the total number of documents, images, and emails in the Pandora Papers, as well as a breakdown of files coming from each of the 14 offshore sources that were part of the leak. ICIJ also maps the number of politicians named in the Pandora Papers by both continent and country and identifies the national location of each of the 27,000 beneficial owners revealed in the leak.

Source: ICIJ

Posted on: December 13, 2021

Model Contract Puts Freelancers First

The good folks at Freelance Investigative Reporters + Editors (FIRE) have put together a model contract for independent journalists to use in dealing with publishers and broadcasters. With the help of former Bloomberg News Global Media Counsel Charles Glasser, FIRE has designed a free template story agreement that puts freelancers on an even level with those they work for. The contract deals with copyright, international rights, kill fees, deadlines, and more. FIRE Director Laird Townsend calls it "a single, fully vetted, trustworthy agreement that provides the liability protections needed to report sensitive stories." The US-based FIRE is a nonprofit that provides support to freelance reporters, including grants of up to $12,500.

Source: FIRE

Posted on: December 9, 2021

SLAPP Campaign Threatens OCCRP Member KRIK in Serbia

KRIK, a Serbian member of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), is now facing a barrage of SLAPP lawsuits, threatening its survival. Three new lawsuits were filed against the Belgrade-based investigative outlet in the past month, bringing the number of legal threats against the news site to 10. In total, the SLAPP suits are seeking $1 million in damages, more than triple KRIK's annual budget. Ostensibly, the sources of these legal threats — a high-ranking police official, the head of the secret service, an international mining company, a media conglomerate — are independent actors, but most have close ties to the regime of President Aleksandar Vucic. “These are clearly frivolous lawsuits designed to overwhelm and intimidate KRIK. This is how the forces of corruption fight the forces of anti-corruption,” said OCCRP publisher Drew Sullivan in a statement.

Source: OCCRP

Posted on: December 8, 2021

New Pandora Papers Info Added to Offshore Leaks Database

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has now incorporated a massive data dump from its Pandora Papers exposé into the Offshore Leaks database. With records on more than 15,000 companies, trusts, and other organizations, the Pandora Papers release brings the total number of entities listed in the Offshore Leaks to roughly 800,000, traceable back to nearly 200 countries and territories. This latest information provided by ICIJ comes from just two of the 14 offshore services providers that made up the Pandora leak: a law firm in Panama and a records company in the British Virgin Islands. “Our work has shown that tax havens can offer protection for people and companies who have something to hide," said ICIJ director Gerard Ryle in a statement. "The Offshore Leaks Database helps put the power of information back where it belongs — in the hands of the public.”

Source: ICIJ

Posted on: December 7, 2021

Moscow Now Targeting Media Attorneys

Not content to brand independent media outlets as "foreign agents," Russian authorities are now going after their lawyers. Yevgeny Smirnov – an attorney defending Ivan Safronov, an investigative reporter on military affairs, is the second lawyer to flee Russia in the past three months. The head of the country's Mass Media Defence Centre, which offers legal assistance to media, has also been placed on the foreign agents list. Over the past year, officials have put 85 entities and journalists on the list. To avoid fines and prosecution, these “media foreign agents” must add a declaration to every post identifying themselves as foreign agents and send quarterly financial reports to the Justice Ministry. “These proceedings and this use of the ‘foreign agents’ label against media lawyers is designed solely to put additional pressure on the journalists they defend, to isolate these journalists and to deter those who could assist them,” said Jeanne Cavelier, head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk.

Source: RSF

Posted on: December 4, 2021

European Cross-Border Environmental Investigation Grants

JournalismFund.eu's Environmental Investigations Programme is now accepting applications for its latest round of reporting grants. These grants, which total up to €400,000 ($450,000 USD), are earmarked for cross-border collaborations focusing on "illegal, unreported and unregulated abuse of nature that involves European affairs in and outside Europe." To apply, candidates are asked to provide team member details, the focus of the investigation and expected publication plan, and a detailed budget. Note: Teams can use the grant money to support preliminary research into the issue as well as working time and logistical expense related to the investigation. The deadline for applying is January 27, 2022.

Source: JournalismFund.eu

Posted on: December 3, 2021

Help GIJN Support Watchdog Journalism

We hope you will join GIJN in celebrating GivingTuesday and supporting investigative journalism at this pivotal moment. As the year nears an end, we take stock of a climate of growing hostility toward journalism around the world—not only in frontline states, but even in countries where press freedom seemed long established. This is a critical time for upholding the values of accountability, transparency, and democratic tradition. As the “network of networks” for watchdog journalists, GIJN will continue to link together and train the world's most enterprising, most determined reporters to fight abuses of power. But to do this, we depend on you. GIJN’s work to get cutting-edge tools and training to our colleagues worldwide—including some of the toughest places on Earth—relies on your support. Here’s a chance to join the fight against the global assault on democracy and its essential component, an independent, watchdog press. Thanks!

Source: GIJN

Posted on: November 30, 2021

2022 Sigma Award Entries Now Open

Applications for the 2022 Sigma Awards honoring the best data journalism around the world are now open. In its third year, the Sigma Awards are no longer requiring journalists to choose between applying for the single project or portfolio prizes. Instead, members of the Sigma jury and pre-jury, which includes GIJN Turkish editor Pinar Dag, will determine which submissions are awarded the $5,000 USD prize in which category. Submitted work can be in any language, but English translations of the reporting must be included to allow the award committee to assess the application. The deadline for applying is January 7, 2022 and the final list of prize winners will be announced next summer.

Source: Sigma Awards

Posted on: November 29, 2021