Journalism in the Public Interest

What the New ‘Collaborative Media’ Can Mean

On Oct. 19, 2010 ProPublica published the first in a series of articles on payments to doctors by drug companies. Called “Dollars for Docs,” the series was accompanied by an exclusive database, tracking payments of more than a quarter billion dollars in less than two years to 17,000 doctors nationwide (updates now include 2 million records and payments of more than $2.5 billion). To date, users of the database have recorded nearly 12 million page views. 

Joining ProPublica in producing initial stories in this series were the Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Consumer Reports, the Nightly Business Report on PBS and NPR News. Recent additional partners included the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Dallas Morning News, Detroit News, Health News Florida, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Nashville Tennessean, Newark Star-Ledger, Philadelphia Inquirer, San Francisco Chronicle and WNYC radio. Later partners have included the Denver Post, Los Angeles Daily News and Salt Lake Tribune. This scrutiny has prompted tightening of disclosure rules.

And it has also blazed a path for a new kind of journalism. With our 2013 update, and using ProPublica’s database local stories on doctors taking such payments, and the implications for patients, have now appeared in the more than 180 outlets:

Abilene [KS] Reporter NewsKLAS-TV (Las Vegas)Providence Journal
Albany Times-UnionKLTV (Tyler, TX)Pueblo [CO] Chieftain
Alexandria [VA] Gazette PacketKMOX TV (St. Louis)Puget Sound Bus. Journal
AnnArbor.comKnoxville News-SentinelRadio Iowa
Austin American-StatesmanKOAA TV (Colorado Springs, CO)Rapid City Journal
Baltimore SunKOLR (Springfield, MO)Reader [Omaha, NE]
Bergen RecordKOMU TV (Columbia, MO)Redding [CA] Record Searchlight
Berkeley [CA] PatchKPBS (San Diego)Richmond Biz Sense
Binghamton [NY] PressKPLU (Seattle)Richmond Times-Dispatch
Billings [MT] GazetteKPSP TV (Palm Springs, CA)Roanoke [VA] Times
Birmingham [AL] NewsKRGV TV (Rio Grande Valley, TX)Rochester [NY] Democrat and Chronicle
Boston GlobeKRNV TV (Reno, NV)Rochester [NY] Star-Gazette
Burnsville [MN] PatchKUOW Radio (Seattle)St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Business Courier (Cincinnati)KVBC News 3 (Las Vegas)Sacramento [CA] News & Review
California WatchKVIA TV (El Paso)Salt Lake Tribune
Charleston [SC] Post and CourierKVLY (Fargo, ND)San Bernardino County Sun
ChattanooganLakeland [FL] LedgerSan Luis Obispo [CA] Tribune
Chattanooga Times Free PressLawrence [KS] Journal-WorldSan Rafael [CA] Patch
Charlotte ObserverLoveland [CO] ConnectionSanta Cruz [CA] Patch
Chicago TribuneLowell [MA] SunSanta Cruz Sentinel
Chico [CA] Enterprise RecordMail Tribune [Medford, OR]Sante Fe New Mexican
Chico [CA] News & ReviewMarin Independent JournalSaratogian
Cleveland Plain DealerMemphis Commercial AppealScranton [PA] Times-Tribune
Coloradoan (Fort Collins)Mendota Heights [MN] Patch7News TV (Denver)
Colorado Public RadioMiddletown PressShreveport Times
Columbian (Vancouver, WA)Milwaukee Journal SentinelSyracuse [NY] Post-Standard
Columbua DispatchMinnesota Public RadioTBD [Washington, DC]
Contra Costa TimesMinnPostTennessean (Nashville)
Daily Hampshire (MA) GazetteMissourinetTexas Tribune
Dallas Business JournalMonterey Co. [CA] WeeklyTulsa [OK] World
The Day (New London, CT)Nashville Business JournalTyler [TX] Morning Telegraph
Denver PostNashville SceneUnion Leader (NH)
Des Moines RegisterNashville Tennessean[Victorville, CA] Daily Press
Detroit Metro TimesNBC ChicagoVirginian-Pilot [Norfolk]
D MagazineNBC ConnecticutWaco [TX] Tribune
Dixon [IL] TelegraphNBC4 [Columbus, OH]WFAE Radio (Charlotte)
Durham [NC] Herald-SunNBC4 [New York City]Willamette Week (Oregon)
Eden Prairie [MN] PatchNBC4 [Washington, D.C.]WFIE TV (Evansville, IN)
Edina [MN] PatchNBC San DiegoWFTS TV (Tampa)
Fort Myers [FL] News-PressNewark ExaminerWHIO TV (Dayton, OH)
Fort Wayne [IN] Journal GazetteNewark Star-LedgerWisconsin Radio Network
Foster’s Daily Democrat (NH)New Hampshire Public
Fredricksburg [VA] Free-Lance StarNew Haven IndependentWLOS TV (Asheville, NC)
Glendale [CA] News PressNew Orleans Times-PicayuneWOAI TV (San Antonio, TX) [Danville, VA]New York PostWorcester [MA] Telegram & Gazette
GoLocalProv [Providence, RI]North Coast Journal (Humboldt Co., CA)WPLN Radio (Nashville)
Greensboro [NC] News & RecordNorth County Times [San Diego]WPTV (West Palm Beach, FL)
Hartford CourantNorthville [MN] PatchWRIC TV (Richmond, VA)
Hawaii Tribune HeraldOakland [MI] PressWSFX Radio (Springfield, MA)
Hopkins [MN] PatchOhio ExaminerWSOC TV (Charlotte, NC)
Houston Business JournalOklahomanWSTP TV (Tampa)
Houston ChronicleOrange County RegisterWTKR TV (Norfolk, VA)
Idaho StatesmanOregonianWTOL TV (Toledo, OH)
Indianapolis Bus. JournalOregon Public BroadcastingWWMT (Kalamazoo, MI)
Iowa City Press CitizenOrlando SentinelWXIA TV (Atlanta)
Jackson [MI] Citizen PatriotPalm Beach PostWXII TV (Winston-Salem, NC)
Journal News (Westchester Co., NY)Pasadena Star-NewsWZTV (Nashville)
Kansas City StarPhiladelphia InquirerYakima [WA] Herald-Republic
KARE TV (Minneapolis)Portland Press HeraldYork Daily Record
KARK TV (Little Rock)Pottstown MercuryYork [PA] Sunday News
KDBC TV (El Paso, TX)
KHOU TV (Houston)

In addition to the initial story partners and many of those above, the following news outlets have included the ProPublica database “widget” on their websites, enabling local readers to check on payments to their own doctors:

Capital Public Radio (Sacramento)KUAZ Radio (Tucson)
Erie [PA] Times-NewsMiami Herald
Hartford CourantMichigan Radio
Hampton Roads [VA] Daily PressSanta Cruz Sentinel
NewsHour on PBSSeattle/Local HeathGuide
KCCU Radio (Lawton, OK)WBUR Radio (Boston)
Keene [NH] SentinelWEOS Radio (Geneva, NY)
KGOU (Norman, OK)WGME TV (Portland, ME)
KLCC Radio (Eugene, OR)WLRH Radio (Huntsville, AL)
KNPR (Las Vegas)WUIS Radio (Springfield, IL)
KPBX Radio (Spokane)WVXU (Cincinnati)
KPCC Radio (Los Angeles) 
Photo by flickr user sparkieblues


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