Journalists, Community Help ProPublica with its ‘Super Bowl Blitz’ Investigation
by Mallary Tenore Tarpley
In timing with Super Bowl XLIV, I wrote a story about ProPublica’s investigation into which Congress members were going to the game and whether they would be fundraising there. ProPublica reporter Marcus Stern is the lead reporter on the “Super Bowl Blitz” project, which is one of several projects he hopes to pursue this year as part of his investigation into political fundraising leading up to the November elections.
To help expedite the reporting process, ProPublica asked the public and journalists to contact their local Congress members to see if they were going to the game. ProPublica documented the results of the crowdsourcing effort on its Web site and has reported follow-up stories since my piece about the project ran on Friday.
“ProPublica reporter Marcus Stern will don his press badge at the Super Bowl this Sunday, but he won’t be covering the game. He’ll be looking for members of Congress who are there, figuring out how they got their tickets and trying to attend whatever fundraisers they’re holding.
“Stern, who plans to reveal his findings in a ProPublica story on Monday, has had some reporting help along the way. Knowing it would be too much for one person to contact all U.S. Congress members, ProPublica turned its “Super Bowl Blitz” investigation into a crowdsourcing effort and asked professional journalists and the public for help.
“The project is an example of how one news organization can tap into professional journalists nationwide to turn an 11th-hour idea into a collaborative investigation.”
Oh, and congratulations, Saints!