Editor

MuckRock Foundation, Anywhere (HQ in Cambridge, MA), All Locations

Date Posted August 21, 2019
Industry Digital Media, Nonprofit
Specialty Investigative
Job Status Full-time
Salary Negotiable
Website https://www.muckrock.com

Description:

Love documents and transparency? Want to use new technology to drive local and national reporting that would otherwise be impossible? Can you crack a decent redaction joke? The MuckRock Foundation is hiring an editor to oversee our reporting, resources, and partnerships across MuckRock, DocumentCloud, oTranscribe, and our other programs.

Here’s what we’re looking for:

— Strong interest in and experience working with primary source documents and data, including public records, spreadsheets, and archival materials.

Interested in pioneering new ways of reporting with readers, including crowdsourcing projects that dig into public health, safety, and national news as well as developing beat-specific reporting resources.

Experience collaborating across departments. At MuckRock, our editorial, administrative, and technology teams work closely together: journalism projects drive site features and vice-versa.

Experience building external collaborations. We work with over 2,500 newsrooms, and we’d like to build on our tradition of high-impact editorial partnerships.

— The ability to set and deliver on editorial goals for audience and impact.

— Experience and comfort managing a small team made of a mix of full-time staff, interns, and freelancers and a desire to lead the continued growth of that team. Over the last two years, we’ve doubled in size and plan to do so again over the next two to three years. We want someone excited about growing a flexible organization committed to work-life balance and reflecting the diversity of our public.

A thoughtful approach to data, automation, and building systems: The most impactful work we do is that on which others can build. While a lot of our editorial work is traditional news articles, we’re also thinking about leveraging profile pages for over ten thousand agencies; creating interactive tools to explain the FOIA process; and automating new approaches to civic transparency and engagement. This also means thinking about where such automation can go wrong and helping set the standards in responsible machine learning, data analysis, and automation.

Below are some qualities that will help candidates stand out to us, but are not required:

— Experience beyond journalism. Moving in and out of journalism can broaden perspectives; if you’ve worked at non-profits, research organizations, or other groups outside of the news industry, we’re excited to hear how that’s shaped your thinking.

— Demonstrated ability to build an audience and explain your strategy: Public records are often considered too “inside baseball” to excite the public. We’re working hard to change that. The editor should have a sense of how to make the tools of investigative and accountability reporting accessible and relevant to a broad audience while building stories and resources that resonate with our core journalistic, non-profit, and academic users.

Data analysis and programming: DocumentCloud’s tagline is “turning documents into data,” and do we have a lot of data. From endless spreadsheets to email files to our own generated data on everything from agency response times to internal metrics, we’re excited to find new ways to analyze and put this information to work. We’d love to have someone with data analysis or data journalism experience, and if you have any background in Python you’ll be able to hit the ground running that much quicker.

Responsibilities

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