Source relationships

LAT fires investigative reporter after disclosure of 'inappropriate relationship' with source

Los Angeles Times | Associated Press The Los Angeles Times fired investigative reporter Jason Felch after he disclosed he had "engaged in an inappropriate relationship" with someone who was a source for a Dec. 7 story on Occidental College's handling of sexual assault allegations. Times Editor Davan Maharaj fired Felch on Friday. The Times noted: Maharaj said the inappropriate relationship with a source and the failure to disclose it earlier constituted "a professional lapse of the kind that no news organization can tolerate." Read More

New Yorker introduces Aaron Swartz-developed privacy tool Strongbox

The New Yorker | The Washington Post | The New York Times | Wired | Guardian | All Things D The New Yorker on Tuesday introduced its new, anonymous electronic tip tool Strongbox, coincidentally on the heels of renewed concerns over privacy for journalists' sources following revelations of Department of Justice surveillance of AP staffers (which The Washington Post's Timothy B. Lee notes is "likely perfectly legal") The Strongbox site ostensibly allows people to submit letters, documents, emails or any other files to the New Yorker anonymously. It was developed in conjunction with Wired investigations editor Kevin Poulsen and the late Web activist and developer Aaron Swartz, who hanged himself in January after facing charges of wire fraud and computer fraud. Poulsen, whose publication also is owned by New Yorker parent Conde Nast, wrote about Swartz's involvement, and why Strongbox was a necessity. There’s a growing technology gap: phone records, e-mail, computer forensics, and outright hacking are valuable weapons for anyone looking to identify a journalist’s source. With some exceptions, the press has done little to keep pace: our information-security efforts tend to gravitate toward the parts of our infrastructure that accept credit cards. Read More