Michael Keller Individual Portfolio
Organisation: Al Jazeera America (United States)
Publication Date: 04/09/2015
DescriptionCategory 9: General Excellence (Jurors' Choice) I am an interactive reporter at Al Jazeera America where I cover the intersection between technology and civic life. As a part of this beat, I look toward visual and data elements to bring readers into the story. In the run-up to the 2014 election, for instance, my coverage focused on the security and reliability of voting technologies. I reported a story on voting's "impending crisis" — aging infrastructure combined with a lack of funds to replace it — and developed an interactive machine lookup tool for voters that included security warnings, tips and local contact information for each county's election officials: http://america.aljazeera.com/multimedia/2014/9/voting-s-impendingcrisis.html#how-do-you-vote I also work with data and information from Freedom of Information Act Requests. On the voting machine beat, I obtained the latest security and accessibility reports of a major international Internet voting vendor: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/10/8/latest-internet-votingreportsshowfailuresacrosstheboard.html On another investigative project looking at how payday lenders use Native American tribes to avoid regulation, I categorized and visualized thousands of consumer complaint data and built an interface for readers to explore them by topic along with fellow reporters: http://projects.aljazeera.com/2014/payday-nation/complaints.html After a short campaign finance project around the election (http://america.aljazeera.com/multimedia/2014/11/big-election-donors2014.html), I worked on more stories about technology and privacy including a longform graphic novella called "Terms of Service: Understanding our role in the world of Big Data" which I co-produced with best-selling non-fiction cartoonist Josh Neufeld. For this project we also open-sourced our web comic viewer called Pulp http://github.com/ajam/pulp that other news organizations have since used to public web comics. Also on this topic, I categorized and visualized how state laws differ when it comes to data breach disclosure notifications: http://america.aljazeera.com/multimedia/2014/12/to-catch-a-breachhowmuchdodatabreachnotificationlawsprotect.html I also contribute to our short turnaround, news-cycle driven coverage. One investigative data project was analyzing claims made against the NYPD for police misconduct in the wake of the Eric Garner non-indictment: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/12/9/nypd-misconduct-claimsatalltimehighs.html This data analysis differed from previous pieces in that it focused specifically on police misconduct and civil rights violations whereas other stories looked at all suits against the NYPD, which may or may not be related to officer's actions towards citizens. The shifting landscape of Texas's abortion clinics has also been a recent issue with courts weighing it as the issue moves through the appeals system. We wanted to show what the lived experience was for women in this state and developed an interactive visualization that measures distance from different parts of the state and shows how much farther women now have to drive given recent clinic closures: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/1/7/texas-abortion-clinicshowfaristoofartodrive.html Our team at Al Jazeera America seeks to give readers a way into the news through compelling visuals and interactive, context-driven presentations. Thank you for your consideration for this year's awards.
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