The SEJ WatchDog


The WatchDog TipSheet is a monthly source of story ideas, articles, updates, events and other information with a focus on freedom-of-information issues of concern to environmental journalists in both the United States and Canada.

Journalists can receive WatchDog TipSheet free by subscribing to the SEJournal Online, the digital news magazine of the Society of Environmental Journalists. Subscribe to the e-newsletter here

WatchDog TipSheet is also available through the searchable archive below and via RSS feed.

Latest WatchDog TipSheet Items

January 26, 2011

January 12, 2011

  • The searchable database is finally being published online for the first time after Congress mandated it in a rider to the 2008 omnibus appropriations bill. EPA compromised after protests from industry, limiting it to only the largest emitters. Pick only emitters in certain states. Focus on emissions of each of the six greenhouse gases it includes — or to customize views according to size of emission or emitting industry.

  • The media blog Gawker thinks it has uncovered a campaign to discredit the New Yorker writer after her August 2010 story on billionaires Charles and David H. Koch, who have secretly funded attacks on government regulations and bankrolled efforts to discredit settled climate science.

  • Many publications and groups schedule special stories, reports, panels, or events during this week to promote freedom of information and to exercise their First Amendment rights. Find suggestions at the American Society of News Editors' official Sunshine Week website.

  • Kudos to the Sunlight Foundation for taking lobbyist data to the next level. It's searchable by issue, by client, or by registrant. It is also highly current — being updated weekly.

  • A man claiming to be an ex-CIA agent is telling people they may stand to get rich if only they could come up with some dirt on scientist Michael Mann, author of the famous hockey-stick graph that shows the earth getting warm suddenly in recent years. No luck so far.

  • Join open-government advocates (including journalists) in blowing the whistle on the anonymous senator who stopped the people's business in the final hours of the last Congress. Call senators, ask if they killed the bill, record your findings or track progress.