Some of what journalists do is tedious, repetitive, time-consuming and expensive to outsource. Transcribing interviews, for instance, can take up a lot of time that reporters don’t have.
Amazon’s Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is a tool that can help journalists better manage these kinds of time-consuming tasks. It’s sort of like eBay for work: Post a task, decide how much you’re willing to pay and gain access to thousands of workers worldwide.
I talked to a few journalists who have used MTurk to transcribe notes, search for data and verify URLS and other information. ProPublica helped start this conversation when it published a guide for journalists looking to use Mechanical Turk.
Using MTurk for transcriptions