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Why a Florida TV station devoted 6,000 words to an investigative story

Columbia Journalism Review

In addition to a five-minute news broadcast, Tampa TV station WTSP devoted 6,000 words online to an investigation on the influence a private PR consultant wields in local politics, complete with links to public records and online-only videos. Noah Pransky, who led the investigation, says the nature of the story demanded length: “This was a story about a consultant’s body of work. It wasn’t about a single issue. We knew that if we wanted to produce a rock solid story that would be hard to dismiss, we had to show that we had looked at everything.”

+ More on reporting from public records: 10 tips for securing public records, including being aware of the laws and writing about it when the government doesn’t cooperate (Poynter)

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