Flashlight: LWC investigative journalism

Engin Akyurt / PIXABAY

We’ve done a few longer pieces at LiveWire Calgary over the past two years; whether it’s the look at why buses don’t use snow tires, the real reasons behind reducing residential speed limits, or how the Enoch Sales House fell through the cracks.

Investigating how or why things happen in our city is an area that many say is lacking in journalism today. People want more digging. We get it.

That’s why NOW, we’ve decided to formalize our commitment to bringing you investigative features – and we’ve called it the Flashlight Project.

Yes – it’s a take from the Boston Globe’s Spotlight investigative journalism unit. We thought Flashlight was more appropriate given our resources…

Here’s what we’ll be doing:

We’re going to tackle issues big and small – all are important – and shine more light on them. We aren’t just going to scratch beneath the surface; we’re going to dig.

These could be human interest stories, crime stories, local issue stories, local political stories, education, health, data and more.


  • For now, our investigations will be focused on topics within a 50-kilometre radius of the City of Calgary.
  • We are a community-focused news organization, and we’ll stick to our mandate for these investigations.
  • We will act on tips from the public. (See what makes a good news tip below.) We can’t act on all of them. Some we can turn into daily news stories.
  • Some investigations take longer, some can be tied up relatively quickly. We’re aiming to produce at least one investigation per quarter (every 3 months), to start. We’ll be doing this on top of our regular daily journalism.
  • It may come in the form of a podcast, written work or video documentary. We’ll let the story direct us.

What makes a good investigative story tip?

Let’s start with what it’s not: It’s not a press release, a business pitch, a rant about a recent story, a he said-she said, or quick hitter.

A good investigative story brings to light something that needs to be told – for transparency reasons, to right a wrong, to expose a flaws, and… to be whistleblowers.

Because of this a good investigative story is rooted in solid information:

  • Documents
  • Emails
  • Video
  • Audio recordings
  • Photos
  • Reports
  • Letters

We invite you to securely upload documents to DropBox to dvkrause@gmail.com (different email).

You can send the information directly via email to darren.krause@livewirecalgary.com. You can use email encryption programs like Pretty Good Privacy (Mailvelope is a Chrome or Firefox add on that can do this).

We’re rolling our sleeves up

We’re hoping to start slow and sure, but keep the ball rolling. There’s a need for deeper investigations into city issues.

To continue this kind of important journalism, we need your support.

You can do this at patreon.com/livewirecalgary.