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GLOBAL-L  June 2013

GLOBAL-L June 2013

Subject:

Re: the offshore leaks

From:

halloran paul <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Fri, 14 Jun 2013 23:06:52 +0400

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Quite right Lucy !

14.06.2013, 19:53, "Lucy Komisar" <[log in to unmask]>:
> I asked if I could have access to files on an international institution I'm looking at. I was told I would have to give the resulting story free to be published by ICIJ. Since I'm a freelancer and this story hasn't been commissioned, subsidized or paid for by anyone, that of course is impossible. I don't mind ICIJ picking up a story someone pays me for, but I'm not a trust fund baby and can't work for free. By the way, I don't think the ICIJ staff works for free.
>
> Lucy
>
> On 6/14/2013 11:04 AM, Steven Bodzin wrote:
>
>> Ha, now I feel doubly bilingual: not only do I work in both Spanish & English, but I also travel freely between blog and the formal news industry. There are a hundred forms of pride, ignorance and discomfort that get in the way of the quest for truth. Sources who don't trust or like foreigners, news outlets that won't mention a story if it was a competitor's scoop (or worse yet came from a dirty hippy blog), linguistic pride or ignorance as mentioned earlier, reporters uncomfortable talking to people outside their class/race/gender identity/whatever, discomfort with mathematics, the list goes on. It's a constant struggle as adults to humble ourselves, drop our prejudices, and accept information even if it comes from people or places we might not normally like.
>>
>> I think the other tidbit is a different topic and might deserve its own thread, which is why I changed the subject line here.
>>
>> Alek's little dig at ICIJ's recent Venezuela work, while impertinent, is correct. There are very few reporters who could make sense of the offshore leaks' connection to Venezuela. The one story that has come out so far in the Offshore Leaks series pertaining to Venezuela was a rehash of info that has been available in English for a couple years (my blog was the first, but not only, outlet to cover the situation -- Reuters did a masterful writeup ages ago). It would be delightful and probably beneficial to all if ICIJ could find a way to give people like us access to the big leaks files, as there is likely info in there on people we've been looking at.
>>
>> Steven Bodzin
>> +1-347-284-6429
>> +56-9-6624-9311
>> skype:bodzin.steven
>>
>> http://stevenbodzin.wordpress.com
>>
>> On Jun 14, 2013, at 9:34 AM, Alek Boyd <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>
>>> +1 on what you just said, however...
>>>
>>> Non English speakers are surely missing a huge part of the picture, and I say that as someone who learned English as an adult. Transnational investigations can not take place by people who don't speak / read / write English. Most, if not all, relevant info is in that language. There are many examples, but I'll just refer to Venezuela, my country: billions syphoned out of the country, stolen in all manner of corruption rackets, the world's biggest banks involved in it, nearly all offshore jurisdictions in it, the lot. Who knows about it? Who publishes about it? More importantly, who's interested?
>>>
>>> Then we see ICIJ reposting stuff about Venezuela that's been in the public domain for ages, as if it were some sort of scoop, while sequestering info that perhaps only a handful of specialist can make sense of…
>>>
>>> English is good alright, but then even those of us who do speak the language, can do the leg work, etc., more often than not can't find outlets interested in either collaborating to further expand/ expose, or get the stuff published. Then there's a certain attitude among traditional journos/hacks with regards to bloggers, a mutual distrust, that hinders fluid cooperation.
>>>
>>> On 14 Jun 2013, at 13:09, Drew Sullivan <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>>
>>>> I was not making a comment on the advantages of cultural diversity or the problems of cultural hegemony.  I have to be pragmatic.  If you give me a reporter who only speaks Slovenian and one who speaks five languages, the Slovene speaker is probably not getting hired (no offense Vasja and Blaz).  What good are they to me if they can’t speak to their colleagues, can’t read 99 percent of the internet, can’t use most public records around the world or do interviews with 99.9 percent of the world?  Our job is to communicate.  Business records, one of the mainstays of investigative reporting, are often available in English.  It’s a HUGE advantage in many parts of the world.
>>>>
>>>> I suck  at languages.  I know this is totally hypocritical.  But I am an editor.   I have learned that creating a great team and doing great investigative reporting is not necessarily about how smart you are, or how hard you work or how many skills you have.  It’s about how efficient you are.  That may sound a little crazy but someone who takes a lot of time to absorb and regurgitate information will not make a long living in this field.  You have to work miracles on a regular basis and publish regularly.  And not having the language skills is the death sentence to a lot or people except those who are localized or those who are exceptional.  It’s simply not efficient to have them doing IR in many cases.  Sorry for being the cold, ruthless bastard but sometimes someone has to be.
>>>>
>>>> -------------------------------------------------------------------
>>>> Drew Sullivan
>>>> Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project
>>>> Sarajevo/Bucharest/Washington
>>>> Twitter: @DrewOCCRP
>>>> Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OCCRP.org
>>>> http://www.reportingproject.net
>>>> +387 33 560 042 (office)
>>>> +387 61 139 403 (mob)
>>
>> ======================================================================= To unsubscribe or modify list settings go to <URL:lists.reporter.org>. Click "Get Password" if you don't have one, login and visit the "Subscriber's Corner". To unsubscribe now click <mailto:[log in to unmask]> (sends a blank e-mail) or send "unsubscribe GLOBAL-L" in the body of an e-mail message to "[log in to unmask]". Please e-mail [log in to unmask] if you need help or have questions. =======================================================================
>
> ======================================================================= To unsubscribe or modify list settings go to <URL:lists.reporter.org>. Click "Get Password" if you don't have one, login and visit the "Subscriber's Corner". To unsubscribe now click <mailto:[log in to unmask]> (sends a blank e-mail) or send "unsubscribe GLOBAL-L" in the body of an e-mail message to "[log in to unmask]". Please e-mail [log in to unmask] if you need help or have questions. =======================================================================

=======================================================================
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