What is an Investigative Journalist?

https://study.com/academy/lesson/investigative-journalism-definition-examples.html

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/investigative-journalism

Meaning of investigative journalism in English

noun

a type of journalism that tries to discover information of public interest that someone is trying to hide:

How does one go about that task?  I know what I do. 

When a topic attracts my attention, I study relentlessly.  The many hats I have worn in past decades each contribute certain skillsets.  I’ve done science; electronics; psychology; mothering; etc.  I’ve been both a blue collar and white collar employee.  I often thought my lack of one career; working for one employer spanning 40 years or more was a detriment.  But in the field of Investigative Journalism, it is a boon.  It’s a delicious field I’ve engaged in for decades, and I love the job.

At first—I never set out to prove anything. 

I set my mind to disproving a topic. 

I’m able to fully listen to another’s point of view in order to add it to my information collection.  I’m able to engage with the interviewee’s belief and, in the moment, believe it myself.  Then I walk away, do additional research, and connect the dots I have in order to ‘see’ a bigger picture.

I support the work of other writers far more than my own.  What I do for so-many-years has often been done for so-many-decades by somebody out there who is so good, their work is like an ice-cream sundae; when someone has 20-30-40 or so years’ experience on a topic and I have far less, it would be unconscionable not to give my readers’ the best—even if it’s not my own work.

I’ve been successful in changing policy twice.  I did an investigation on an issue, wrote a bang-up story [exposing the policy’s illegality], and the policy was quietly withdrawn.  I contacted another person involved in another issue I investigated, and the details were soon changed thereafter.  I do mean changed.  [A procedure in a form you fill out at an office most frequently has changed. For those of you in the know: Remember when the PHQ-9 form took a back seat to the PHQ-2? Yep–that was me.]

I don’t do Investigative Journalism for accolades; I do it in the interest of revealing truth.  I think of what I do as getting at the derivative of truth—the bottom line.

But in clearing up that equation, I run into all sorts of resistance because I end up knowing more.  I’ve ripped apart mountains of information most people don’t have time to accomplish. 

People who know nothing more than what is on the ‘boob’ tube [television]; or through those training technologies [that you are completely unaware of]; or the usual black-and-white sheets that no longer deliver news [propaganda]; often reject my learned position with those indentured slogans that have been preached at us for decades.

I affectionately call those folks:

INFO-ZOMBIES. 

These are people who have been so indoctrinatedso conditioned—even so brainwashed that they cannot consider anything other than what’s been pounded into their ears and eyes for years. 

They are the hardest to reach with the truth. They will defend the information slammed into them for years in a Stockholm-like manner—even to the point where they will take up arms for those implanted ideas. 

Investigative journalists are impervious, right ?  Maybe not.

There are some among us who prefer to believe there is no link between us at all.

Copyright 2020 Joyce Bowen

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