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About ProPublica

ProPublica is an independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. ProPublica is headquartered in Manhattan.

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By Julia Angwin and Terry Parris Jr., ProPublica Imagine if, during the Jim Crow era, a newspaper offered advertisers the option of placing ads only in copies that went to white readers. That’s basically what Facebook is doing nowadays. The ubiquitous social network not only allows advertisers to target users by their interests or background, it […]

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By Eric Umansky, ProPublica Last week, we reported how Amazon often makes its products look like better deals than they actually are. When the website ranks products by price that are available from Amazon and other sellers, the company excludes the cost of shipping only on the products sold by Amazon and vendors that pay the company. […]

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By Julia Angwin and Surya Mattu One day recently, we visited Amazon’s website in search of the best deal on Loctite super glue, the essential home repair tool for fixing everything from broken eyeglass frames to shattered ceramics. In an instant, Amazon’s software sifted through dozens of combinations of price and shipping, some of which were […]

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Welcome to Visual Evidence, a new regular series about visualization in the real world! We’ll take a look at unexpected datasets, cool design solutions or insightful graphics. We’ll find examples of how visual information can help us solve real-world problems or save us from our own mistakes. And we’ll illustrate all these ideas with charts, […]

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By Allan Sloan, ProPublica Tim Cook got almost $400 million of restricted stock when he was named Apple chief executive in 2011, succeeding Steve Jobs. Regardless of whether Apple shareholders fared well or badly over the grant’s 10-year term, all Cook needed to do to collect that stock (worth about $700 million at today’s price) […]

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By Allan Sloan, ProPublica Wealth, jobs and pay inequality are big political issues this presidential primary season, and they’re bound to become bigger once the parties pick their nominees. In the plethora of plans candidates tout for tackling these problems, one favored tool stands out: the federal tax code. But trying to legislate corporate behavior and […]

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By Michael Grabell, ProPublica  LAS VEGAS — A scantily clad acrobat dangles from the ceiling, performing flips and splits as machines puff smoke and neon lights bathe the dance floor in turquoise and magenta. Dancers in lingerie gyrate on poles to the booming techno. Actors dressed as aliens pose for selfies with partygoers. There’s an […]

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By Jeff Larson and Julia Angwin, ProPublica As politicians and counter-terrorism officials search for lessons from the recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, senior officials have called for limits on technology that sends encrypted messages. It’s a debate that has repeatedly recurred for more than a decade. In the 1990s, the Clinton Administration directed technology […]

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By Lauren Kirchner, ProPublica Current and former government officials have been pointing to the terror attacks in Paris as justification for mass surveillance programs. CIA Director John Brennan accused privacy advocates of “hand-wringing” that has made “our ability collectively internationally to find these terrorists much more challenging.” Former National Security Agency and CIA director Michael […]

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By Charles Ornstein, ProPublica This story was co-published with the Washington Post. Jacqueline Stokes spotted the home paternity test at her local drugstore in Florida and knew she had to try it. She had no doubts for her own family, but as a cybersecurity consultant with an interest in genetics, she couldn’t resist the latest advance. […]

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By Lauren Kirchner and Surya Mattu, ProPublica Uber has long stirred controversy and consternation over the higher “surge” prices it charges at peak times. The company has always said the higher prices actually help passengers by encouraging more drivers to get on the road. But computer scientists from Northeastern University have found that higher prices don’t […]

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By Michael Grabell, ProPublica This story was co-published with NPR. Ten prominent Democratic lawmakers, including presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, are urging the U.S. secretary of labor to come up with a plan to ensure that state workers’ compensation programs are properly caring for injured workers. The lawmakers’ letter, sent Tuesday, was prompted by an […]

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By Lauren Kirchner, ProPublica How much does your smart home know about you? That was the question that Charles Givre, a data scientist at Booz Allen Hamilton, set out to answer in a recent experiment. Givre has an account on Wink, a platform designed to control, from a single screen, his Internet-connected home devices, such as […]

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By Julia Angwin and Jeff Larson Verizon is giving a new mission to its controversial hidden identifier that tracks users of mobile devices. Verizon said in a little-noticed announcement that it will soon begin sharing the profiles with AOL’s ad network, which in turn monitors users across a large swath of the Internet. That means […]

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By Annie Waldman, ProPublica A new report released Thursday provides a detailed look at the graduation rates of low-income college students. At many colleges, low-income students graduate at much lower rates than their high-income peers. At the University of Missouri-Kansas City, only 35 percent of Pell Grant recipients graduate college, a rate that is more […]

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