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Tools & Data

ProPublica's News Applications, Graphics, Databases, and Tools.

Selected Interactive News Applications

A Disappearing Planet

Today’s extinction rates rival those during the mass extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

Surveillance

The NSA Revelations All in One Chart

We plotted the NSA programs, showing which ones fall squarely into the agency’s stated mission of foreign surveillance, and which ones are more controversial.

Restraints

Can Schools in Your State Pin Kids Down? Probably.

Public schoolchildren across the country were physically restrained or isolated in rooms they couldn’t leave at least 267,000 times in the 2011-2012 school year, despite a near-consensus that such practices are dangerous and have no therapeutic benefit. Many states have little regulation or oversight of such practices. This map shows where your state stands.

Restraints

Restraint Techniques

A Minnesota Department of Education report shows these three common restraints. So-called prone restraints are known to restrict breathing and can be lethal to children. About half of states don’t have a law prohibiting public schools from using such restraints. Minnesota doesn’t allow prone restraints on disabled children and will ban the tactics altogether after August 2015.

Examining Medicare

Ambulances for Dialysis Patients on Rise

New Jersey leads the nation in average annual Medicare spending on ambulance services per dialysis patient, billing for unusually large numbers of non-emergency ambulance rides, according to a our analysis of Medicare payment data. Several ambulance providers said they’ve heard of providers who sign up patients who don’t need the service — a form of fraud. These charts show spending by state from 2001 to 2011, compared to national averages. Sort by the most-recent year or by state.

Guns

Where Do the Guns Traced in Your State Come From?

Nearly a third of the 155,000 guns officials recovered in 2012 were traced back to sources outside the state they were found in, according to data compiled by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Use this tool to see firearms traces in each state that year.

Examining Medicare

Treatment Tracker

Medicare recently released, for the first time, details on 2012 payments to individual doctors and other health professionals serving the 46 million seniors and disabled in its Part B program. Part B covers services as varied as office visits, ambulance mileage, lab tests, and the doctor’s fee for open-heart surgery. Use this tool to find and compare providers.

Segregation Now

School Segregation After Brown

Hundreds of school districts were placed under court order to desegregate following the Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board of Education ruling. Many communities do not know the status of these orders. Use this tool to find out whether your district is or ever was under a desegregation order, and also to look at the levels of integration and segregation in your schools.

Segregation Now

Desegregation Court Records

Search here for desegregation documents we collected during our reporting.

Timeline: The Tortured History of the Senate’s Torture Report

Two weeks ago, the Senate Intelligence Committee voted to declassify the executive summary of its report about the CIA’s detention and interrogation program. And it’s still not going to be published just yet. What has taken so long?

Internships

The Department of Labor’s Internships Investigations

In 2010, the Labor Department issued a new fact sheet clarifying when an intern needs to be paid under federal labor law. We collected the case files for all the internship investigations the Labor Department concluded in the three years after issuing new regulations.

A Deadly Surge in Tower Climber Accidents

Nineteen workers have died in communication tower accidents since 2013, a sharp rise from recent years. OSHA has announced new changes in how it polices the industry, including tracking what cell carrier or tower owner subcontractors had been working for when accidents occurred.

Internships

The Price of an Internship

Unpaid internships can help young workers advance their career goals. But they can also vary significantly in cost and quality. Explore college internship programs at different schools across the United States — or tell us about your experience interning for academic credit.

Dollars for Doctors

Doctor Payments on the Decline

Pharmaceutical company payments to health care professionals dropped between 2011 and 2012 among most of the companies and categories ProPublica tracks, driven in part by increased transparency as well as blockbuster drugs losing patent protection. Research payments, however, have increased among that group.

Failing the Fallen

Bud’s Story, from the Records

Private Arthur ‘Bud’ Kelder died as a POW in the Philippines during World War II. His parents always hoped that his body would eventually be sent home. But despite clues, the military has never recovered his remains. Here are letters and others documents from his case from 1941 to 1950. The documents and photographs below are either from the National Archive or courtesy of John Eakin.

Chart: Trauma Hospitals Fail to Screen for Civilian PTSD

A growing body of research shows injured civilians, particularly those injured as a result of violence, are developing PTSD at rates comparable to veterans of war. But many hospitals are doing little to address the problem. We asked 21 top-level trauma centers in cities with the nation’s highest murder rates whether they screen injured patients for signs of PTSD.

Temp Land

Temp Worker Regulations Around the World

The United States has some of the weakest labor protections for temp workers in the developed world. Here, we map out how countries compare based on data compiled by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Buying Your Vote

How Dark Money Flows Through the Koch Network

An obscure Arizona nonprofit disbursed millions in cash from anonymous donors. Some was spent on the 2012 elections.

Surveillance

Stasi Social Network Analysis

This hand-drawn graphic, which is undated, was made by the East German secret police and appears to show the social connections the Stasi gleaned about a poet they were spying on.

Tire Tracker

Use this database to look up how your tires are rated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Journalists: Send ProPublica Your Redaction Classics

The Obama administration’s take on transparency can be rather opaque. Send us your most memorable FOIA documents for our Redaction Classics collection.

ER Wait Watcher

Which emergency room will see you the fastest? We’ve got a handy guide for impatient outpatients.

After the Flood

How Well Did FEMA’s Maps Predict Sandy’s Flooding?

When Superstorm Sandy struck New York and New Jersey last year, the accuracy of FEMA’s flood-risk maps for the area, used to help guide development and set flood insurance rates, varied widely. In some cases, the data behind the maps dated as far back to the 1970s. Click a county below to see more about FEMA’s data for that county.

China’s Memory Hole: The Images Erased From Sina Weibo

ProPublica has been collecting images that have been deleted by censors from Sina Weibo, “China’s Twitter,” since May. We gathered a team of people proficient in Mandarin to read and interpret 527 deleted images collected during a two-week window this summer. The images provide a window into the Chinese elite’s self-image and its fears, as well as a lens through which to understand China’s vast system of censorship.

Surveillance

How the NSA’s Claim on Thwarted Terrorist Plots Has Spread

In the months since revelations about NSA surveillance began, intelligence officials and members of Congress have claimed that the agency’s efforts have thwarted 54 terrorist attacks. But a review of official statements shows the NSA has been inconsistent about how many plots have actually been thwarted and what the role the spying programs played. Despite a lack of evidence, Congress and the media have rushed to repeat the most extreme version of the NSA’s claims.

Overdose

How Much Acetaminophen Are You Taking?

Many common over-the-counter drugs contain acetaminophen. Taking more than one at the same time increases your chance of “double-dipping”—accidentally overdosing.

Surveillance

Has the Gov’t Lied on Snooping? Let’s Go to the Videotape

Since Edward Snowden leaked documents detailing the NSA’s surveillance programs, the Director of National Intelligence acknowledged that part of his congressional testimony was “erroneous.” But that’s not the only questionable comment by administration officials.

Surveillance

NSA Surveillance Lawsuit Tracker

The recent disclosure of sweeping surveillance by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has prompted a new wave of legal challenges to the U.S. government’s intelligence-gathering programs.

Timeline: America’s Long Civil Rights March

ProPublica has created a timeline to appreciate the key moments and often differing aims of the government’s judicial and legislative branches in the ongoing clash over civil rights.

Internships

Tracking Intern Lawsuits

The complaints against Condé Nast, Warner Music and Gawker Media are the latest in a rising tide of lawsuits brought by unpaid interns, many of which are still in progress.

After the Flood

New Maps and a New Plan for New York

FEMA’s released new, preliminary flood insurance maps for New York City, which specify how likely areas are to flood. The new maps, which replace maps that used data from 1983, double the number of structures in flood zones.

Surveillance

Mass Surveillance in America: A Timeline of Loosening Laws and Practices

The evolution of the National Security Agency’s dragnet under Presidents Bush and Obama. 

Patient Safety

Your Hospital May Be Hazardous To Your Health

As part of our ongoing investigation into patient safety, ProPublica reporters Marshall Allen and Olga Pierce produced this interactive story in collaboration with PBS Frontline and Ocupop during a May 11-16 hackathon.

The Prescribers

Prescriber Checkup

Medicare’s popular prescription-drug program now serves more than 35 million people, but the names of prescribers and the drugs they choose have never previously been public. Use this tool to find and compare doctors and other top prescribers in 2010.

Nonprofit Explorer

Use our database to find almost 616,000 tax-exempt organizations and see details like their executive compensation, revenue and expenses, as well as download their tax filings going back as far as 2001.

Play Our Experimental News Game: HeartSaver

HeartSaver is an experiment in news game design, built in two days for the April 2013 GEN Editors’ Lab Hackathon. How many lives can you save?

What Happened to the Gun Bill?

The Senate defeated several amendments to the proposed gun control bill, with only two amendments reaching the 60 votes necessary to pass. We break down how senators voted.

Guns

Where Congress Stands on Guns

Four months after the Newtown tragedy, the Senate resoundingly defeats gun control legislation. We break down how Senators voted on the bill.

Five Drugs the FDA Doesn’t Want You to Know Relied on Tainted Data

ProPublica was able to pinpoint five drugs whose approval rested, at least in part, upon data from a now defunct firm with “egregious” research violations

After the Flood

Interactive Map: See Where the Government is Lending after Sandy

See where the over 20,000 SBA rebuilding loans are, half of which fall in FEMA’s new advisory flood zones.

Fracking

Updated: State Gas Drilling Regulatory Staff Tracker

How big is the natural gas drilling regulatory staff in your state?

After the Flood

How Disaster Aid Recipients Voted on Sandy Relief

Though the Sandy relief bill passed both the Senate and the House, many members of Congress voted no despite their own states receiving millions of dollars in federal disaster assistance in 2012.

Segregation Now

Housing Segregation: The Great Migration and Beyond

Explore the great migration of African Americans from 1940 to 2000 and segregation in Northern cities.

Body Scanners

What Kind of Body Scanner Does Your Airport Have?

Nearly 100 backscatter scanners were removed from major airports recently to speed up lines. See if they’re still in use at your airport.

Nursing Homes

Nursing Home Inspect

We’ve updated our app with new data and a new design, making it easier to find nursing home problems in your state.

Pipeline Safety Tracker

Every year the nation’s oil and natural gas pipelines suffer hundreds of ruptures and spills. We map major pipeline accidents from 1986 to the present.

Buying Your Vote

How Much Did Independent Groups Spend Per Vote?

Although an unprecedented amount was spent by outside groups in an effort to influence the 2012 campaign, the candidates with the most super PAC funding were defeated Tuesday. Here’s a look at how much outside groups spent per vote in a few of the notable races.

Buying Your Vote

Message Machine: Tracking Political Targeting

Political campaigns send many variations of each email to supporters. We’ve been collecting emails from political campaigns and tracking the variations. You can be a part of this project by forwarding political emails you get to emails@messagemachine.propublica.org.

Free the Files

Free the Files: Help ProPublica Unlock Political Ad Spending

Outside groups are spending millions of dollars hoping to influence political campaigns – but they’re hard to track down. Detailed information about spending is locked in documents filed at TV stations across the country. Help us uncover this spending by reviewing documents.

Injection Wells

State-by-State: Underground Injection Wells

Through the Freedom of Information Act, ProPublica collected annual state regulatory summaries for the underground injection of waste that were submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency between late 2007 and late 2010.

The Drone War

Interactive: Stacking Up the Administration’s Drone Claims

How the government talks about a drone program it won’t acknowledge exists.

Buying Your Vote

How Some Nonprofit Groups Funnel Dark Money Into Campaigns

Explore how tax-exempt groups active in the 2010 election spent millions of dollars on campaigns, sometimes reporting less political spending to the Internal Revenue Service than they did to election officials.

Buying Your Vote

Graphic: Who are the Super PACs’ Biggest Donors?

An interactive chart showing the share of all contributions given by the top ten donors to each of the 12 largest super PACs.

Interactive: How Obama Drone Death Claims Stack Up

Obama administration assertions about the number of civilians killed by U.S. drone strikes have varied widely. We charted every claim we could find.

Where Are the Foreclosure Deal Millions Going in Your State?

We contacted every state to see how they are spending the money they received from the foreclosure settlement. Here’s the most comprehensive breakdown available anywhere.

Murdoch’s Circle: The Growing News International Scandal

From phone hacking to bribery, the corruption at News International has involved many players—increasingly, ones close to Rupert Murdoch. We’ve mapped out the players involved in this growing debacle, organized by their proximity to Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and other senior staff.

Timeline: How Obama Compares to Bush on Torture, Surveillance and Detention

As the terrain and debate around national security shifts, we took a look back at some of the most controversial elements of George W. Bush’s national security policy, to see how much has changed under Obama – and how much has stayed the same.

Latest News Corp. Investigation Emails

Report your findings in over 160 News Corp. internal emails released today

Dialysis

Updated: Dialysis Facility Tracker

ProPublica obtained data about the performance of more than 5,000 U.S. dialysis clinics. Our Dialysis Facility Tracker allows patients to compare clinics on such measures as patient survival, infection control, hospitalization rates and transplant rates.

Buying Your Vote

A Tangled Web: Who’s Making Money From All This Campaign Spending?

Many have been detailing the vast sums being raised by the presidential candidates and the super PACs supporting them. But where are all those millions being spent?

Sealing Loose Lips: Charting Obama’s Crackdown on National Security Leaks

A timeline of the Obama administration’s aggressive campaign against government leakers.

Fracking

What the Frack is in That Water?

Environmentalists have repeatedly pressed regulators to compel oil and gas companies to report what chemicals they use in the drilling and fracking process. No one knows the exact makeup of the frack mixture or drilling muds, but this list breaks down the main ingredients revealed so far.

Message Machine: Reverse Engineering an Obama Email Campaign

Campaigns are increasingly tailoring their messages—and their funding requests—using massive databases of personal information about potential voters. Here are six variations of a Thursday night message from the Obama campaign, based on emails submitted by 190 recipients across the country.

Ponying Up: How Much Have Big Banks Been Docked for the Financial Crisis?

Nearly four years after the financial crisis, settlements with the big players on Wall Street keep coming out, one after the other. It can be hard to keep track of it all. So who’s been hit, with what, and for how much in total?

Taking Stock of the Stock Act: A Side-by-Side Comparison

The Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act, or Stock Act, recently passed in both chambers of Congress. We break down the main differences between the House and Senate versions, with a real-life scenarios that illustrate activities the bill targets.

Eye on the Stimulus

Updated Recovery Tracker

Once again, we’ve taken all the data used on the government’s stimulus Web site, Recovery.gov, spiffed it up and added thousands of other recovery spending records — the law doesn’t require all recipients to report to Recovery.gov.

Komen’s Contortions: a Timeline of the Charity’s Shifting Story on Planned Parenthood

The Komen foundation’s decision to cut funding to Planned Parenthood set off such an uproar that the charity quickly gave it back. We trace how their explanations changed along the way.

Fracking

From Gung-Ho to Uh-Oh: Charting the Government’s Moves on Fracking

Fracking has only recently become a household word, but government involvement with the drilling technique goes back decades. We trace officials’ moves—and levels of caution—over time.

PAC Track: Now Includes Contributions

What and where are the super PACs spending?

SOPA Opera

Well-funded interests on either side of SOPA and PIPA are lining up support among members of Congress. This database keeps track of where members of Congress stand.

Redistricting

Rep. Jerry McNerney’s District

Democrats recognized that they could protect Jerry McNerney from being redistricted out of office by the Citizen’s Redistricting Commission.

Redistricting

Fair Districts Mass Proposals

Fair Districts Mass says it is an independent group seeking better representation for minorities, but it has proposed maps that call its motives into question.

Redistricting

Florida’s 3rd Congressional District

Congresswoman Corrine Brown, an African-American Democrat from Florida, represents one of the most irregularly shaped districts in the nation.

Dollars for Docs

Has Your Doctor Received Drug Company Money?

ALEC-Related Contributions

Use this database to find campaign contributions from some ALEC-affiliated groups to some ALEC-member state legislators.

The Opportunity Gap

ProPublica analyzed new data from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights along with other federal education data to examine whether states provide students equal access.

Dollars for Doctors

How the Heart Rhythm Society Sells Access

The Heart Rhythm Society’s annual conference is a marketing bonanza for drug companies and medical device makers.

Dollars for Doctors

How Much Money Do Groups Receive From Industry?

In a response to a request from Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, 33 professional associations and health advocacy groups listed their payments from the pharmaceutical, medical device and insurance industries. They also detailed the relationships that the groups’ executives and board members had with the same companies.

FOIA b(3) Exemptions

Information about watermelon handlers, avocado importers and caves are some of the categories of information that have been withheld from federal Freedom of Information Act requesters using sections of laws that are otherwise unrelated to disclosure. There are hundreds of such laws, according to data compiled by the Sunshine in Government Initiative. They fall under number three—known as b(3)—of the nine exemptions. Use our database to see how extensively agencies use b(3) exemptions.

Post Mortem

Autopsies in the U.S.A.

ProPublica, in partnership with PBS “Frontline” and NPR, surveyed almost 70 of the largest coroner and medical examiner systems in the U.S.

FCIC Document Dive

When the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission released its final report on the causes of the financial crisis, it released an extensive document archive. We’ve tried to make searching through it a bit easier. Use the form below to search for people, places, or organizations mentioned in the documents.

Scraping for Journalism: A Guide for Collecting Data

A series of technical and programming tutorials on how scraped, parsed, and organized data for “Dollars for Docs.”

Tainted Drywall

Find Homes With Tainted Drywall

When the Consumer Products Safety Commission provided data in October, the agency said it had received fewer than 3,500 reports of tainted drywall. ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune compiled a list of addresses from county property appraiser data and records in consolidated lawsuits filed in New Orleans federal court and found nearly twice that number: around 6,900 homes.

Eye on the Bailout

Interactive: Which Banks Got Emergency Loans from the Fed During the Financial Meltdown?

Wednesday the Federal Reserve released data on more than 21,000 loans and other deals it made through a dozen emergency programs created during the financial crisis. We’ve combined the Fed’s three programs that loaned directly to banks and other financial firms with the goal of getting them to start lending again.

The Wall Street Money Machine

CDOs’ Interlocking Ownership

See which CDOs exchanged pieces with other CDOs through our interactive feature that reveals the incestuous nature of Wall Street’s CDO business.

The Wall Street Money Machine

Chart: A Bank’s Best Customers

In the last two years of the boom, CDOs created by one bank commonly purchased slices of other CDOs created by the same bank.

BP Claims Tracker

Follow the damage claims from the Gulf Oil Spill paid by HP.

Eye on the Bailout

Bailout Scorecard

Our frequently updated database tracks every dollar and every bailout recipient. Check out our scorecard to see where the spending stands.

“What Health Care Reform Means” Stories

Using results from a questionnaire we did with American Public Media’s Public Insight Network, we examined how the proposed health care reforms will actually affect people facing common health care coverage situations.

Graphic: The Timeline of Magnetar’s Deals

How did Magnetar’s deals in subprime mortgage securities compare to the overall market’s?

Eye on Health Care Reform

Side By Side: Health Care Bill

Compare the Senate version of the 2010 Health Care overhaul bill with the final bill.

When Caregivers Harm

Tracking Nurses—What You Need to Know

How easy does your state make it to investigate licensed nurses online?

Eye on Loan Modifications

Loan Mods Tracker

How is the $75 billion home mortgage foreclosure prevention program performing?

Eye on the Stimulus

Stimulus Speed Chart

Just how fast are federal agencies getting stimulus money out the door?

Unemployment Insurance Tracker

Tracking how long state unemployment insurance trust funds will hold up.

Leadership PAC Tracker

How much did your congressman’s Leadership PAC raise, and where did that money go?

Eye on the Stimulus

Stimulus Contracts Tracker

What companies in your area have received highway stimulus funds?

Video Skimmer: Ron Boline

Use our video skimmer tool to navigate through the testimony of Ronald Boline, on private contractors in Iraq.

Photo by flickr user sparkieblues http://www.flickr.com/photos/sparkieblues/3971258497/

Podcast

Latest Episode: Reporter Paul Kiel talks about the ways installment-loan lenders skirt the law to get customers on the payment treadmill – and then into court.

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