You Want More Unbiased Reporting? Add These Investigative Sources for Your News

Photo for Unsplash by Valentin Salja

There has been much hand wringing these past several years about finding unbiased news sources. Trying to find that kind of reporting is available. You just have to know where to look, which is why I’m providing this list.

In addition to the big newspapers, there are many other sources to find excellent, well researched stories.

Bias alert here: While I was actively working at news agencies, I did not observe my colleagues slanting a story to suit their bias. In fact, more than once, during an investigation, there were surprises we did not expect while in working a story. Our pride was in doing the required amount of research, source interviews and fact checking that was satisfying.

While the big papers and tv news companies are under attack, let’s remember that it was The Washington Post who outed Project Veritas for hiring Jaime Phillips, who in fact was sent in to place a phony story implicating Roy Moore and his alleged sexual harassment issues with underage girls. The Post did its due diligence and routed out the scam.

Like most legitimate news organizations, the Post goes through an entire fact-checking process to be sure its information is valid especially if the story is controversial.

Maybe Project Veritas founder, James O’Keefe, should have learned his lesson after getting caught creating phony videos like the time he paid an employee of the ACORN community group $100,000 for editing a piece to suit his needs.

So, I thought a list of due diligence investigative organizations who practice broad scope research will help to find in-depth reporting about stories you have heard of as well as fully researched people, events and organizations you may not have thought of, but are important.

For example, look at this story that Mother Jones ran about the corporate, private prison industry: “Read Mother Jones reporter Shane Bauer’s firsthand account of his four months spent working as a guard at a corporate-run prison in Louisiana.”

This is the kind of solid investigative journalism we need more of. Most of the organizations I list below are non-profits and reader supported as the funds for this kind of work has shrunk.

Which is sad because now we need these news outlets more than ever. There should be something for everyone in this list.

Mother Jones- Mother Jones was founded in 1976 and is a reader-supported, nonprofit news organization based in San Francisco. MJ has bureaus in Washington, DC and New York City. It is hard copy and well as online. It covers general reporting on topics including politics, climate change and education.

Pro Publica- was initially founded by a former managing editor of The Wall Street Journal. It is a nonprofit investigative news site based in New York City. It was the first online publication in 2010 to win a Pulitzer Prize and has earned two more since, as well as a long list of other prestigious awards.

Capital Research Center-The Capital Research Center was established to research how foundations, charities, and other nonprofits spend money as well as how they get involved in politics and advocacy, often in ways that donors never intended and would find abhorrent.

The Hill-The Hill is a political newspaper published in Washington, D.C. Its goal is to report on the intersection of politics and business, as well as to offer insight into all factors of legislative decisions.

All Sides- All Sides attempts to expose bias on all sides and seeks to provide multiple angles on the same story, thereby allowing readers to get the full picture, not just one slant.

Center for Investigative Reporting- Founded in the San Francisco Bay Area. CIR is a nonprofit and partners with other outlets to reach a wide audience in print, on television, on radio and online. It is connected with PRX Radio to produce Reveal, the investigative radio program and podcast. The Reveal website is now home to all of CIRs investigative content.

The Center for Public Integrity-(CPI) is a nonprofit investigative organization and been has been around for 30 years. Its reporters have won dozens of journalism awards, including a Pulitzer in 2014, for its investigations of money in politics, national security, health care reform, business and the environment.

Frontline (NPR)- Frontline is an investigative documentary program. Its documentaries are broadcast on PBS and are available online, along with original reporting.

The Intercept — The Intercept is a news organization that was founded by legal and political journalist Glenn Greenwald, investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill and documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras.

RealClearInvestigations- Is a news aggregator which launched last fall. It is a nonprofit, investigative arm of Real Clear Politics. It has also begun conducting original investigations.

The International Consortium of Investigative- Journalists (ICIJ) is a nonprofit and an offshoot of the Center for Public Integrity that began 20 years ago. It is a global network of more than 190 investigative journalists in more than 65 countries who work together to investigate cross-border issues including crime, corruption and abuse of power.

Investigative Reporters and Editors — IRE is a grass-roots, nonprofit, membership organization that has been providing tips, training and conferences for investigative reporters since 1975. Its blog, Extra! Extra! reveals a wide variety of watchdog journalism.

Buzzfeed- BuzzFeed has a growing investigative team, but is not always easy to find online. If you want to know what the team is up to you can follow its editor, Mark Schoofs, @Schoofsfeed on Twitter.

Master researcher, journalist and non-fiction author. San Francisco Values launched in 2020 and my new book. Regina of Warsaw in process.

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