Blog

Loopholes Discussion Board

Aug 26, 2012

Do you want to fight on an internet message board? C'mon, of course you do! This week's story about death benefits and insurance annuities was a co-production with the investigative news organization ProPublica.

Thursday Night Sleepwalk With Me Pajama Party at Midnight!

Aug 20, 2012

Attention New York: Ticket sales are so strong that midnight shows have been added to the premiere weekend of Sleepwalk with Me in New York City!  That's this coming weekend, starting 11:59pm the night of Thursday August 23rd.

Ira and Mike to Joss Whedon: It's On.

Aug 16, 2012
Ira writes: We're coming after you, Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Black Widow and that guy with the bow and arrow.

"The Convert" Update

Aug 16, 2012

This week’s episode, "The Convert," was about FBI informant Craig Monteilh, who went undercover in southern California’s Muslim community to try to find people who were recruiting and training terrorists. Craig’s operation, which took place in 2006 and 2007, was called Operation Flex.

Avengers Director Joss Whedon Calls for Sleepwalk With Me Boycott

Aug 14, 2012


Ira writes: Fine. If it's war he wants, it's war he'll get.

NYC, Chicago, L.A.! See Sleepwalk with Ira & Mike in Person!

Aug 8, 2012

This just in: Ira Glass and Mike Birbiglia, co-writers of the movie Sleepwalk With Me — which is now scheduled to show at over 100 theaters all over the country (thanks to your help!) — will be attending screenings in NYC, Chicago and L.A.. Seriously.

Welcome to Our New Website

Aug 1, 2012

You may notice that we've given our site a bit of a facelift. In addition to general sprucing-up, we've added a couple new features. One is the Story Globe, which lets you search our archive of stories on a map of the world. (How many stories take place in Selma, Indiana?

Updates about Journatic

Jul 17, 2012

There's been quite a lot of fallout in the two weeks since we aired our story about Journatic (episode 468, "Switcheroo"). In case you missed it: Journatic is a company that outsources labor to generate “hyperlocal” news content for newspapers all over the country. To create this content cheaply, it uses offshore researchers and writers, especially from the Philippines. The detail in our story that got newspaper editors worked up, though, was this: In real estate stories done by Journatic's sister company, Blockshopper, writers (both American and Filipino) were routinely using pseudonyms, which meant fake names were making their way into major daily newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune, The Houston Chronicle, The San Francisco Chronicle, and others.

Evidently, the editors of those papers didn't know this was going on. And once they did, they were very unhappy. Several papers have dropped Journatic, and there's some strife at Journatic internally as well. Its editorial chief quit.

The Chicago Tribune (Tribune Co. is a major Journatic investor, by the way) launched an internal investigation, and then suspended its use of Journatic content.

Here's media blogger Jim Romenesko on the subject. His post includes the internal memo sent to Tribune employees. Also in this post: Journatic's editorial chief explains why he just quit.

Here's Poynter's roundup of newspapers that have canceled their deals with Journatic.

And here's another from Poynter, showing how Journatic used fake bylines on other local news stories (Journatic's CEO had insisted the fake bylines were limited to real estate stories).