Find Your Writing Niche: Investigative Journalism

 One of the aberrations of the recent cover story in “Rolling Stone” magazine, “A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA,” is the lack of confirming information. The magazine abided by the woman’s request not to contact the men she accused of raping her.

“Jackie” is convinced that what happened to her really happened, yet other information coming forward contradicts her claims. Whatever the actual facts are, no journalist covering a deeply sensitive story such as this rape on campus account should have one source. Facts get misinterpreted, memories fade and people get confused. It is only fair to get as much information as possible.

This criterion should not be ascribed only to investigative reporting. ALL printed stories should include accurate information.

What other sources can a journalist contact to check for information?

· Those who have a direct connection to the event

· Friends, family and acquaintances

· Press releases

· Printed programs

· Online sources

· Those who are recommended as sources

I have written more than 1,000 stories over the years, and I believe that multiple sources are invaluable. When there are contradictions, try to confirm facts. If not available, state that certain facts aren’t readily confirmed.

I found the following articles informative: risk/2012/06/07/gJQArTzlLV_story.html

Article By: Jo Ann Mathews

I published three ebooks in 2020: Women and Adversity, Honoring 23 Black Women; Women and Adversity, Recognizing 23 Notable Mothers; and Women and Adversity, Saluting 23 Faithful Suffragists to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote. These books are meant to be study guides for all students from grade school through college to help in choosing topics for assignments and to learn more about these noteworthy women. Go to, and to learn more.

    Write a Reply or Comment About This Article

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Time limit exceeded. Please complete the captcha once again.


    Subscribe to Blog via Email

    Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 217 other subscribers

    Discover more from Jo Ann Mathews

    Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

    Continue reading