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ProPublica launches ChangeTracker with help of journalist-programmer

February 23rd, 2009Posted by in Online Journalism

Not-for-profit news organisation ProPublica is already making the most of new journalist-programmer intern Brian Boyer, who joined the site last month.

Boyer, who graduated from a specialist programming-journalism course at Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, has created ChangeTracker – a tool to monitor changes made to WhiteHouse.gov, Recovery.gov and the upcoming FinancialStability.gov websites.

“ChangeTracker lets users see exactly what was removed, edited or updated on those sites by showing side-by-side comparisons of sites before and after changes made to them,” says a release from ProPublica.

What’s more you can get updates of the changes via RSS, Twitter, email or via the ChangeTracker webpage.

“ChangeTracker will help us keep an eye on the administration’s transparency pledges, and will help reporters, bloggers, government watchdogs and everyday citizens keep watch over the websites of their elected officials,” said Scott Klein, director of online development.

In true Boyer style, the programming behind the tool will be open source, much like his News Mixer application, for use by third-parties.

The organisation recently launched Shovelwatch – a site analysing President Obama’s stimulus package.

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