3 Online research and reporting

‘Just what do you think you’re doing Dave? … I really think I’m entitled to an answer to that question.’

HAL the shipboard computer in 2001: A Space Odyssey1

Imagine you’re climbing a mountain and getting instructions from someone who’s reached the top. The top of the mountain is their perspective. So their advice and guidance uses references and terms which might be invaluable half-way up the cliff face. But they’re less helpful when you are still huddled in your tent at base camp, staring at your feet.

There have been numerous attempts to define how journalists use online resources to assist their research and reporting. But they usually start from the top of the mountain, listing devices such as search engines, ...

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