The what, the how and the money
Bari, 26 September 2013
Nicolas Kayser-Bril - @nicolaskb - Journalism++
Datajournalism is vast
Let's start with examples
You received a hard drive
with 260 Gb of information?
From data to politicians feeling uneasy
In a small Belgian town
Examples abound of data-driven investigations
What do these stories have in common?
Some amount of data
Do you need a 3-people team to get started?
Anyone can start bootstrapping a data-driven story
Up your skills!
Blogs, forums, mailing lists, books
Get talent from the outside!
Make friends with developers
Network with other journalists
The one skill you cannot outsource
These are harmless fun
but data illiteracy can cause great damage
Mistakes with risks: The UK pill scare
Biased data: the Orthodox Church
Statistical insignificance: e-cigs
How to get data literate?
Significant digits, stats basics, critical thinking go a long way.
How to get started?
Reuse the work of others!
Why work from the ground up each time?
Let free libraries do the heavy lifting
Taking datavisualization as an example, from most versatile to most simple
Or use off-the-shelf tools
If you do it more than once, do a template.
Reuse from your own projects.
Some things that happen more than once.
Elections, storms, soccer world cups, floods, fires, olympic games,
police investigations, cabinet reshuffles, Premier League tournaments,
cabinet meetings, cricket world cups, trials, oil spills, Apple product launches
Nobel prizes, murders, Champion's Leagues, riots, budget crises,
food poisoning scandals, new car models, US bombing some country
Put your templates in one place.
And define metrics for success!
Structure your own data
Finding, refining and maintaining
a data set takes time
Organize your data sets & query them fast
Keep them in one place,
to be used by all the data team
SQL tables, OpenRefine, Google Docs
(Again, all free!)
Let's take an example
September 21st, 09:00 GMT
Westgate mall shooting starts
It takes 12 clicks to add context to the event
Because the cleaned terrorism database was at hand
The database can become the product
Governement employees salaries
How can one live from this?
Corporate and advocacy storytelling
How many slaves work for you?
OpenDataCity: Yosemite Fire
Hard to monetize
Traditional publishers set up "labs", but it's expensive
1. Get started
2. Get data-literate
3. Leverage existing tools and networks
4. Be creative when selling