Conference takes first steps toward official nonprof investigative network

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The Watchdogs at Pocantico conference, “Building an Investigative News Network,” has wrapped up in Tarrytown, N.Y., and attendees from nearly 30 media outlets are heading home. But before they departed, they signed onto the Pocantico Declaration. It recommends preparations begin immediately to form the Investigative News Network. The network will “aid and abet, in every conceivable way … the work and public reach of its member news organizations.” The steering committee will begin fund-raising work, and create an Investigative News Network website. “What is clear in this Pocantico Declaration,” the treatise concludes, “is that we have hereby established, for the first time ever, an Investigative News Network of nonprofit news publishers throughout the United States of America.” Pubcasters in attendance included Brian Duffy, NPR’s managing editor for news; Stephen Segaller, director of news and public affairs programming at WNET.ORG; and Stephen Smith, executive editor and host of American RadioWorks from American Public Media. The gathering was co-sponsored by the Center for Investigative Reporting and Center for Public Integrity, two nonprofs.