Subscribe to The Atlantic and get 2 free issues

This Book Is Now a Pulitzer Prize Winner: An Excerpt from 'Toms River' by Dan Fagin

This year's Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction was awarded yesterday to Dan Fagin, an NYU science journalism professor, for Toms River: A Story of Science and Salvation. According to the Pulitzer committee, Fagin's book, which chronicles the effects of chemical waste dumping on a small New Jersey community, "deftly combines investigative reporting and historical research to probe a New Jersey seashore town’s cluster of childhood cancers linked to water and air pollution." Thank you to Fagin and Bantam Books for allowing us to reprint the excerpt here.

AUTHOR:Dan Fagin
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: April 15, 2014
LENGTH: 8 minutes (2153 words)

Busting Out of Online Poker: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: April 9, 2014

Reimagining the Student Publication: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: April 3, 2014

Demonstrating in the Cloud: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: March 25, 2014

The Creeping Tech Angst in Silicon Valley: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: March 12, 2014

The Higher Ed Experience in 2014: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: March 6, 2014

The Story Behind The Rob Ford Story

How a little-known Supreme Court ruling unmuzzled reporters—and changed Canadian journalism:

The truth about Rob Ford was dragged into public view one story at a time, in every case without the benefit of irrefutable proof. There were no Breathalyzer tests proving that the mayor had a drinking problem, and while three journalists reported seeing the video of the mayor smoking crack, it would be months before the police confirmed that it even existed. Through it all, Ford and his older brother Doug, a city councillor, fought back by vigorously advancing versions of events that were the exact opposite of what happened. How, then, did Doolittle and others manage to get at the truth without risking the mother of all defamation suits?

PUBLISHED: March 1, 2014
LENGTH: 25 minutes (6275 words)

Two Perspectives on the Duke University Porn Star: Our College Pick

Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick.
SOURCE:Longreads
PUBLISHED: Feb. 26, 2014

Playboy Interview: Gawker's Nick Denton

The media entrepreneur’s vision for the future of content and journalism:

DENTON: The Panopticon—the prison in which everybody is exposed to scrutiny all the time. Do you remember the website Fucked Company? It was big in about 2000, 2001. I was CEO of Moreover Technologies at the time. A saleswoman put in an anonymous report to the site about my having paid for the eye operation of a young male executive I had the hots for. The story, like many stories, was roughly half true. Yes, there was a young male executive. Yes, he did have an eye operation. No, it wasn’t paid for by me. It was paid for by the company’s health insurance according to normal procedure. And no, I didn’t fancy him; I detested him. It’s such a great example of Fucked Company and, by extension, most internet discussion systems. There’s some real truth that gets told that is never of a scale to warrant mainstream media attention, and there’s also no mechanism for fact-checking, no mechanism to actually converge on some real truth. It’s out there. Half of it’s right. Half of it’s wrong. You don’t know which half is which. What if we could develop a system for collaboratively reaching the truth? Sources and subjects and writers and editors and readers and casual armchair experts asking questions and answering them, with follow-ups and rebuttals. What if we could actually have a journalistic process that didn’t require paid journalists and tape recorders and the cost of a traditional journalistic operation? You could actually uncover everything—every abusive executive, every corrupt eye operation.

SOURCE:Playboy
PUBLISHED: Feb. 21, 2014
LENGTH: 30 minutes (7539 words)