The funds target the outlet’s Electionland collaboration and other related national and local reporting that focuses on voter experience and practices that jeopardize the right to vote. A small portion of the funds will also be used for investigative journalism in 2021.
Electionland, which was first introduced ahead of the 2016 presidential election and later relaunched during the 2018 midterms, uses tools like data sources, social-media newsgathering and verification technology to identify how voters are being disenfranchised. Some of those ways include voter harassment, disinformation and equipment failures.
Since launching, Electionland has focused on addressing voting issues quickly, while polls are still open. It has worked with hundreds of journalists and journalism students who have reported on voting problems in real time from newsrooms nationwide.
The $1 million gift will enable U.S. newsrooms and technology companies to more closely watch the elections.
Scott Klein, deputy managing editor of ProPublica, said: “In 2020, we’ll grow the cutting-edge tools that we built for previous Electionlands and empower local reporters with information early enough to take action, while voting is still happening.”The gift is part of Craig Newmark Philanthropies ongoing contribution to news outfits, which included a $1 million to Mother Jones to fight fake news in 2018 and $6 million to Consumer Reports in 2019.