“The Fracking Song” is latest twist in explanatory journalism

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A ProPublic series on the environmental threats of drilling for natural gas inspired a new kind of news explainer: A song. David Holmes, a journalism student in New York University’s Studio 20 program, which focuses on adapting news to the web in innovative ways, tells Poynter, “We were concerned with building a better entryway into that investigation and we figured a song would be the perfect way to do it — especially since it’s called fracking.”

“My Water’s On Fire Tonight: The Fracking Song,” has nearly 83,000 hits on YouTube since it was posted last week — along with lots of fans. “I don’t understand how ‘Charlie Bit Me’ can have more views than this,” quipped one.

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