Masterclass in data journalism tools

The global company uses its reach and technologies to help journalists do better their job through innovative tools and courses
With newsrooms going faster and faster, Google News Initiative appeared as a link between Google and journalismMasterclass in data journalism tools. One of its most important parts is the Google News Lab, which explores to elaborate new formats and tools for journalists and storytelling around the world.
Simon Rogers, Google News Lab Data editor, knows that their job has been useful for newsrooms around the world, especially now that “51% of newsrooms nowadays have a data team”, as he showed a Google research about it at his master class on data journalism tools at the International Journalism Festival, in Perugia.
Google News Initiative works on trust and misinformation, local news, inclusive journalism and emerging technologies, which include both “challenges and solutions.” Data can be used to get information from all around the world, for example, through maps that show what are people googling related to a famous person or a specific topic.
Mr. Rogers gave Google Trends examples about the utility of data that went from donut and pizza consumption to gun control, from interest in vote between Clinton and Trump to know how fast people look for information about terrorist attacks. “This tells us what we are… It means something.” Like in Italy, where, as he showed, people google more about football than about politics.
To develop all that kind of material, Google News Lab doesn’t want to make journalists to know how to code, but they (like Mr. Rogers on his speech) share new collaborative tools and platforms for it, such as Flourish, Dataviz project and Tilegrams.
At the same time, Google News Initiative wants to go beyond, and that’s why they have a training center for those who want to develop skills on data journalism. Also, they edit The Data Journalism Handbook in partnership with the European Journalism Center,
“Data is powerful because it can help people to understand,” Mr. Rogers said before sharing Google’s hate crime data base, created by his team because the state in the US doesn’t register that kind of crimes.

José Manuel Cuevas Borda