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Field Notes

Why Global’s Mark McAllister broadcast his own story of epilepsy

Journalists tell stories every day, but what happens when a journalist becomes the story? Here in J-source, Global Toronto's Mark McAllister describes the events leading up to his much publicized on-air seizure; how he dealt with the media scrutiny that followed; and why a medical condition doesn't stop a reporter from being a reporter.

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The story behind CBC’s offshore “tax havens” series

CBC explains how it got the tax haven series, which all began when almost a year ago when Frederic Zalac, a reporter for the Radio-Canada program Enquete and our Special Investigations Unit, was approached by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

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Honour among thieves: Putting the story before your ego

What's more important: exclusivity or a great story? A new model of cooperative journalism being developed at the Toronto Star is helping to break news, and the traditional practice of keeping information from competitors. Here in J-source, Star investigative reporter Robert Cribb explains how sharing resources led to better journalism in a series on underage Cuban sex workers.

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Exposing Canada’s back door: How a King’s journalism class got an NNA nomination for their investigation into P.E.I’s cash-for-residency immigration policy

J-Source goes behind the story of the National Newspaper Award-nominated story “Cashing In: Inside PEI’s Controversial Immigrant Partner Programs.” Laura Armstrong, a graduate of University of King’s College journalism program and deputy editor for “Cashing In,” explains how their student investigative workshop exposed the inner workings of the province's immigration program.

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Are journalists shitbags? (Or, how to avoid sensationalism)

Renee Wilson was surprised to hear someone describe journalists as "shitbags" at a recent conference, and grew concerned when that statement was backed up with plenty of examples of subpar shock journalism being passed off as news. Here in J-Source, she explores a solution for sensationalism: "genuine conversation."

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There is ‘no such thing as an uninteresting or insignificant life’ – excerpt from Sandra Martin’s Working the Dead Beat

You may think chronicling the lives of the dead is either the first or the last job you could have on a newspaper. But after years of writing obituaries for The Globe and MailSandra Martin argues that it taught her there’s “no such thing as an uninteresting or insignificant life.”  Martin reflects on how she applied her journalistic approach, pushing for context, insight into strangers’ lives, in her new book, Working the Dead Beat.

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Checking your bias

Do your biases affect your journalism? Field Notes Editor Nicole Blanchett Neheli talks with American J-prof Sue Ellen Christian, and reporters from across Canada, about strategies to ensure every story is as balanced as possible, and how reflection and ethics are the keys to objective reporting.

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Covering the U.S. election through expat eyes: The Globe and Mail’s citizen journalism project

When The Globe and Mail was planning its U.S. election coverage early this year, they had an idea: What if they used Canadian expatriates living in the United States to be their cultural translators, filtering and explaining the election news to readers back home? Online politics editor Chris Hannay explains how The Globe's most ambitious citizen journalism project came to be and gives five lessons that the team learned over the duration of their coverage.

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#NMPS2012: Public spheres, public spaces and “shit storms”

For journalists in particular, understanding the impact of what we say and do on the Internet is now an essential skill. But is it even possible to predict reaction to an offhand comment or in-depth story, or determine how much of an event is reflected in the social media swarm that takes over stories like the uprising in Egypt? That type of online discourse was the focus of the New Media and the Public Sphere conference in Copenhagen. Field Notes editor Nicole Blanchett Neheli was there, and captures the dialogue here for J-Source.

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Liveblog: New media and the public sphere conference in Copenhagen

Field Notes editor Nicole Blanchett-Neheli liveblogs from the New Media and the Public Sphere conference in Copenhagen on Nov. 8 and 9. 

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