NY Times: Group Plans to Provide Investigative Journalism. Paul E. Steiger, who was the top editor of The Wall Street Journal for 16 years, and a pair of wealthy Californians are assembling a group of investigative journalists who will give away their work to media outlets.
Foundations are stepping into the breach left by downsizing media companies, and not a minute too soon. This effort will, if it works, be a serious contributor to the news scene.
But it looks to be aiming at the biggest stories, not the local investigative pieces that are the most threatened of all as newspapers — which do almost all of the serious local journalistic investigations these days — whack at staffs and ambitions. Will foundations step up to that, too?
There’s one serious omission in the Times story, which says:
The nearest parallels to Pro Publica may be the Center for Investigative Reporting in San Francisco, and the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting in Washington, groups that support in-depth work and have had considerable success getting it published or broadcast in mainstream media.
This will come as news to the organization that has done, by and large, the finest such work of all: the Center for Public Integrity. Is it possible that the Times reporter didn’t know about the center’s work? Or is it that the center doesn’t get its work published in “mainstream” media that is the issue? Either way, it deserved mention here.