6 free, digital tools for journalists

byTaylor Mulcahey
Apr 25, 2019 in Digital Journalism
Cell phone

It’s important to remember — the tools don’t make the journalist. Still, a good toolbox is bound to help.

After a particularly frustrating incident in which I lost an entire recorded interview, I sat down to review the tools and applications I use on a daily basis to complete my work — tools for recordings (like the one I lost), task management, investigations and verifications.

Toby

When researching for a story, I generally have an abundance of different tabs open in my browser, which can be difficult to navigate when looking for the particular tab I need. Toby is designed to address this chaos. Promoted as an alternative to Bookmarks, Toby is a Google Chrome extension that allows you to organize tabs into projects and collections. They, in turn, appear in your browser as cards, which are much easier to click through to find the page you’re looking for.

Hunter.io

I was first introduced to Hunter.io thanks to an article from the Global Investigative Journalists’ Network (GIJN) that was republished on IJNet. While investigations offer their fair-share of excitement, a good portion of time is actually spent doing pretty mundane things, like finding emails addresses. For this, Hunter.io can help — by finding the email addresses of people you’re trying to track down.

Cogi

Going through an entire audio file of an interview can be tedious, especially when you need just a few critical quotes. Cogi is designed to capture audio highlights. When you hit record, Cogi will start recording, but it will also go back in time to capture up to 45 seconds prior.

Truepic

Truepic is a great photo and video verification app that is critical for journalists — and really anyone — working in an age when digital manipulation is so easy. Available for iPhone and Android, you can learn more about the technology behind the verification in this IJNet article.

WordPress

When reviewing apps, many people suggested WordPress as one of the most useful apps for journalists. While it’s nothing new, or unique, it’s a great one to remember. WordPress allows you to manage your digital portfolio, blog or website while on the go. You can also access notifications and analytics right from your Apple or Android device.

Currents

Being a good journalist means understanding what people are paying attention to. Currents, a new product from Parse.ly, does exactly that. It tracks, and shares, the most widely-read articles of the day, as well as how certain topics are performing so journalists can better tailor their content to audience demand.


Main image CC-licensed by Unsplash via ROBIN WORRALL.