Journalists gone wild
Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about my increasing addiction to the social networking site Facebook.com. Mostly, at that time, my time was spent finding new friends and communicating with people I hadn’t spoken with in a while—and working on My Farm (never mind).
Last week, I started a Reno NewsandReview page. The following day, I started a Reno News & Review group (note the ampersand or lack of it). Friday, we posted a document relating to a lawsuit that was filed to prevent the Reno Gazette-Journal from accessing public documents relating to Reno, Sparks and Washoe County’s personnel records. The Reno Gazette-Journal prevailed in court and was given the names, salaries and overtime payments for all city of Reno employees. That newspaper received the document on Dec. 26, but never posted it. Anyway, I got it on Thursday and posted it, as I said, on Friday.
OK, so here we go. Over the weekend, I received about 10 emails relating to the salaries and overtime. We added some 200 people to the Reno News & Review group. A couple of people posted commentary relating to and advancing the story on the group page. Because of that commentary, I’ve made further public document requests from the city of Reno, which I will post when I receive them.
This is fascinating. Through this website, Facebook, the public is able to direct and contribute to what’s essentially an investigative journalism effort to discover whether the city of Reno is correctly managing its personnel and whether a few organizations and individuals are abusing the system to enrich themselves at taxpayer expense.
That’s pretty cool. It’s kind of the Reno News & Review unleashed from weekly release, which is also what our blogs (Newsview by Dennis Myers, www.newsreview.com/reno/newsview/blogs and Green with NV by Kat Kerlin, www.newsreview.com/reno/greenwithnv/blogs), our Myspace page (www.myspace.com/renonewsandreview), and our Twitter dealybopper (RNRtwits) are supposed to do.