Spot Journalism will provide a new way to pay for local investigative reporting by soliciting financial support from the public. Through this project, independent journalists and residents will propose stories, while Spot Journalism uses the Web to seek “micro-payments” to cover the costs. If enough donors contribute the amount needed, a journalist will be hired to do the reporting. The money has to come from a variety of sources, though. Each project will need many small contributions before being approved in order to avoid personal crusades. In addition to offering a new model for investigative work, Spot Journalism will provide a way to discover the issues important to a community while giving a voice to those who wonder why a given problem is not being investigated.

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