Documenting COVID-19 project and MuckRock join together to expand public records journalism with partner newsrooms

Documenting COVID-19 project and MuckRock join together to expand public records journalism with partner newsrooms

Launched in April 2020, the Documenting COVID-19 project has filed thousands of public records requests and partnered with newsrooms around the country to report out critical accountability stories of the pandemic. Now the effort is expanding even further with MuckRock.

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Apple wants your new driver’s license to be an iPhone, but FOIA requests showed states weren’t along for the ride

Apple wants your new driver’s license to be an iPhone, but FOIA requests showed states weren’t along for the ride

In June, Apple announced it will add state IDs, such as driver’s licenses, to its Wallet app, rolling out in participating states and at TSA checkpoints this fall. But public records tell the behind-the-scenes story about Apple’s interactions with government agencies when building out the idea, including how a select few jurisdictions were given a heads up as early as 2019, with many others finding out after the public.

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How the Indigenous Investigative Collective brought together journalists across the country to investigate missing COVID-19 data

Members of the Indigenous Investigative Collective recently joined MuckRock for a webinar to discuss how they’ve used records laws, data analysis and reporting to understand the impact of COVID-19 on communities, with a particular focus on Navajo Nation, including how a patchwork of transparency laws left key questions unanswered.

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Webinar: How the Indigenous Investigative Collective use public records to show dire gaps in COVID-19 data access

Webinar: How the Indigenous Investigative Collective use public records to show dire gaps in COVID-19 data access

In May of 2020, the Navajo Nation reported one of the highest per-capita COVID-19 infection rates in the United States. But even the dire official numbers didn’t tell the full story. The Native American Journalists Associations Indigenous Investigative Collective brought together three newsrooms to launch a public records campaign to dig into how a mix of varying access rules and bureaucratic intransigence have made it impossible to get a full, complete picture of the pandemic.

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MuckRock-supported story plagiarized others’ work

Over the past six months, we’ve been expanding our collaborative outlets with newsrooms around the country. Recently, we were notified that one of those efforts we supported with training, FOI assistance, and a reporting stipend, a report on policing by the Chicago Crusader, was almost entirely lifted from other outlets as well as existing material available online.

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