WHAT IS ORTAK?
Ortak is an Independent Newsroom for Investigative Journalists,
based out of Istanbul, Turkey.
Collaborative journalism matters: Ortak brings the best out of an investigative journalist, by providing the necessary conditions for high-end investigative journalism. Ortak believes collaborative investigative journalism is key to better journalist investigations.
No employees: Ortak has members and contributors, but not employees. Nevertheless, every journalist who works with Ortak receives copyrights in accordance with their contributions to the investigations.
Not a medium: Ortak is a newsroom by definition, but it’s not a medium or a media channel by itself. Ortak’s investigative work gets published at media companies that employ Ortak’s members (or freelancers decide their own publication addresses). In other words, Ortak is the kitchen, not the display window.
Documentation is the first, second, and third priority: Ortak aims to tell investigative stories that serve the public interest. But irrefutable documentation is the most distinguishable element of every Ortak investigation.
Ground-breaking and comprehensive investigative journalism works usually demand a great deal of time, and plenty of resources. But high-quality, evidence-based investigative journalism might still hit some roadblocks, even though time and resources are provided.
Ortak brings essential requirements of investigative journalism together:
- Resources: High-end investigative journalism requires resources. Ortak does not employ journalists but every journalist that contributes to Ortak’s investigative work receives copyright through resources Ortak puts together either by self-funding or co-funding.
- Team and collective expertise: Each Ortak investigation is initiated by a team of investigative journalists with different backgrounds and diverse areas of expertise. The collective expertise teams possess means a greater possibility to accomplish difficult investigations.
- Monitoring: For ensuring the quality of the research, and adhering to journalism ethics, each project undertaken by a team of investigative journalists at Ortak receives monitoring by other members, from the beginning of the research, until the publication.
Ortak aims to create an ideal working environment for investigative journalists, who are interested in covering problematic phenomena, which are generally too broad or difficult to be properly researched by a single reporter alone.
In that regard, Ortak enriches the capabilities of both the journalist and the product. Ortak provides journalists with greater means for better investigative journalism, and Ortak requires more members to attain that goal.
From a journalistic point of view, Ortak investigations are focused on several key aspects:
- Documentation: Ortak investigations are initiated either to expose a hidden fact or simplify an entangled subject so that the journalists and the public could comprehend the underlying phenomena. But every investigation’s first and foremost requirement is proper documentation. By its nature, Ortak is interested in investigative work, only if is backed up by necessary documentation.
- Public interest: Ortak investigations have another common element. Every Ortak work, either slightly or greatly, should serve the public interest.
- Story-telling: Ortak aims to tell the stories that matter in the proper fashion. This is why multimedia formats and story-telling methods of every Ortak investigation are unique.
Ortak is willing to work with every journalist, who is capable of conducting research in the investigative journalism discipline and share our values and priorities.
Ortak has a secretariat and members, not employees
Ortak doesn’t employ journalists, it provides journalists with the optimum conditions to commence large investigations.
Apart from having a general and editorial secretariat, Ortak does not employ personnel. Every investigative journalist Ortak work with is either employed at a media organization or works freelance. Ortak provides its members with the resources, collective experience, and monitoring necessary for the success of every investigative journalism endeavour.
Investigative journalists working on an Ortak investigation have control over the final publication place or places. Per se, an investigative journalist collaborating with Ortak on a particular investigation can take the final product to the organization where she/he works. And freelancers could publish the work they contributed on a media platform of their choosing.
Ortak is a newsroom by definition, but it’s not a medium or a media channel by itself
Collectively, members of Ortak decide on the investigations it carries out, monitor each team’s progress and research methods, finalize the investigative work, and disseminate the final product to newsrooms Ortak members work for.
Publication of each investigative product receives the green light, once every contributing Ortak member’s workplace agrees on a publication plan and timetable.
© Copyright 2023 Ortak