Data for Business Journalism, NICAR 2012
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Presentation given to Investigative Reporters & Editors NICAR conference, St Louis, Feb 23, 2012

Presentation given to Investigative Reporters & Editors NICAR conference, St Louis, Feb 23, 2012

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Data for Business Journalism, NICAR 2012 Presentation Transcript

  • 1. In search of globalcorporate data featuring OpenCorporates Chris Taggart, OpenCorporates, NICAR, Feb 2012
  • 2. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right?
  • 3. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis
  • 4. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis
  • 5. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce
  • 6. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce
  • 7. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc
  • 8. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In
  • 9. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In
  • 10. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In Google/Yahoo Finance etc
  • 11. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In Google/Yahoo Finance etc
  • 12. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In Google/Yahoo Finance etc Annual reports
  • 13. Corporate data for journalistsis a solved problem. Right? Hoovers, Lexis-Nexis Jigsaw/Salesforce Kompass, Mint/Orbis, etc Linked In Google/Yahoo Finance etc Annual reports
  • 14. That’s fine for bigcorporations
  • 15. But...
  • 16. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies
  • 17. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies Most are just aggregators of same standard sources, and rarely connect to or show the original data
  • 18. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies Most are just aggregators of same standard sources, and rarely connect to or show the original data Information gets poorer once outside the US/UK
  • 19. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies Most are just aggregators of same standard sources, and rarely connect to or show the original data Information gets poorer once outside the US/UK Doesn’t cover smaller companies well
  • 20. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies Most are just aggregators of same standard sources, and rarely connect to or show the original data Information gets poorer once outside the US/UK Doesn’t cover smaller companies well Rarely gives access to data
  • 21. But... Typically only good coverage of largest companies Most are just aggregators of same standard sources, and rarely connect to or show the original data Information gets poorer once outside the US/UK Doesn’t cover smaller companies well Rarely gives access to data Very proprietary... and no provenance
  • 22. Why is this important?
  • 23. Becausecompaniesno longerlook like this
  • 24. nor like this http://www.flickr.com/photos/ahxcjb/518357242
  • 25. it’s far more like this
  • 26. or even like this
  • 27. or even like this
  • 28. So, a bit of a mess, butinvestigation is still possible
  • 29. So, a bit of a mess, butinvestigation is still possible FOR KNOWN STORIES
  • 30. So, you’re reliant uponhttp://fr.fotopedia.com/items/flickr-3346906435
  • 31. So, you’re reliant uponhttp://fr.fotopedia.com/items/flickr-3346906435
  • 32. orhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/corywendorf/3620929918/sizes/z/in/photostream/
  • 33. But this is about data journalism, right?
  • 34. And there’s a lot of data outthere
  • 35. And there’s a lot of data outthere
  • 36. Most isn’t linked to the legalentity, making it difficult to use
  • 37. Most isn’t linked to the legalentity, making it difficult to use
  • 38. But it does include a wealthof other information...
  • 39. If only we could tie it all together...
  • 40. And legal entity matters
  • 41. And legal entity matters It’s the thing that ends up in court
  • 42. And legal entity matters It’s the thing that ends up in court It’s the way that provides firewalls for associated people, companies, organisations – information, regulation, tax
  • 43. And legal entity matters It’s the thing that ends up in court It’s the way that provides firewalls for associated people, companies, organisations – information, regulation, tax It allows a corporate entity to take advantage of different rules in different jursidictions – regulatory arbitrage
  • 44. If you don’tthink thisaffects yourlife, you’veslept throughthe past fewyears http://www.flickr.com/photos/aaronjacobs/64368770
  • 45. So... OpenCorporates
  • 46. A simple (but huge) goal: anentry for every corporatelegal entity in the worldBased on the company number and jurisdiction(no monopoly id)
  • 47. A simple (but huge) goal: anentry for every corporatelegal entity in the worldBased on the company number and jurisdiction(no monopoly id)
  • 48. A simple (but huge) goal: anentry for every corporatelegal entity in the worldBased on the company number and jurisdiction(no monopoly id)
  • 49. [Digression] The DUNS number
  • 50. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962
  • 51. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system
  • 52. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system
  • 53. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system Get governments around the world to use it instead of the company IDs they created themselves...
  • 54. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system Get governments around the world to use it instead of the company IDs they created themselves... Persuade them to integrate deeply into their systems, & thus do the selling for you
  • 55. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system Get governments around the world to use it instead of the company IDs they created themselves... Persuade them to integrate deeply into their systems, & thus do the selling for you
  • 56. [Digression] The DUNS number Genius idea. Developed by Dun & Bradstreet in 1962 Create a monopoly ID system Get governments around the world to use it instead of the company IDs they created themselves... Persuade them to integrate deeply into their systems, & thus do the selling for you Assert your IP so that they can’t use it freely (as in free speech)
  • 57. We’ve got data too
  • 58. We’ve got data too
  • 59. All openly licensed
  • 60. All openly licensed
  • 61. 4 core uses for journalists
  • 62. The simple search
  • 63. The simple searchNot to be underestimated
  • 64. The simple searchNot to be underestimated
  • 65. The simple searchNot to be underestimatedMassively reduces friction(how long will it take youto find and searchmultiple jurisdictions)
  • 66. The simple searchNot to be underestimatedMassively reduces friction(how long will it take youto find and searchmultiple jurisdictions)
  • 67. The simple searchNot to be underestimatedMassively reduces friction(how long will it take youto find and searchmultiple jurisdictions)Allows what if questions
  • 68. The simple searchNot to be underestimatedMassively reduces friction(how long will it take youto find and searchmultiple jurisdictions)Allows what if questionsPotentially generatesstories in its own right
  • 69. The simple searchNot to be underestimatedMassively reduces friction(how long will it take youto find and searchmultiple jurisdictions)Allows what if questionsPotentially generatesstories in its own right
  • 70. Source for additional info
  • 71. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites...
  • 72. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites...
  • 73. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites... Intl trademarks, UK govt spending, official notices, health & safety...
  • 74. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites... Intl trademarks, UK govt spending, official notices, health & safety...
  • 75. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites... Intl trademarks, UK govt spending, official notices, health & safety... Other IDs: SEC, CAGE, charity....
  • 76. Source for additional info Addresses, filings, status, websites... Intl trademarks, UK govt spending, official notices, health & safety... Other IDs: SEC, CAGE, charity.... Coming soon: lobbying registers
  • 77. Reconciliation(matching names to legal entities)Cleans upmessycompanynames (&previousnames) tolegal entity,and from thereto other data
  • 78. Reconciliation(matching names to legal entities)We provideGoogleRefinereconciliationservice(specific tojurisdiction)
  • 79. Reconciliation(matching names to legalUsed byOpenSpending &discussingwith govtsto clean updata atsource
  • 80. Reconciliation(matching names to legal entities)And caneven be usedto find outusefulinformationon its own
  • 81. The database/platformAPI: allows allinformation to beretrieved as data,even searches
  • 82. The database/platformUser-contributeddata: Userscan now addwebsites,telephonenumbers,addresses
  • 83. The database/platformCorporateGroupings – auser-curatedway of groupingcompaniestogether,mapped to theWikipedia articleabout them
  • 84. The database/platformComingsoon: givingusers theoption tomatch datatocompanies
  • 85. One last thing... We’ve juststartedimporting andindexingcompanyofficers
  • 86. New feature: officersYou can nowsearch byofficer name
  • 87. New feature: officersEarly stage:we’re stillfetching theinfo (and canonly get forjurisdictionsthat publishit), but eventhat’s useful
  • 88. New feature: officersEarly stage:we’re stillfetching theinfo (and canonly get forjurisdictionsthat publishit), but eventhat’s useful
  • 89. New feature: officersEarly stage:we’re stillfetching theinfo (and canonly get forjurisdictionsthat publishit), but eventhat’s useful
  • 90. New feature: officersEarly stage:we’re stillfetching theinfo (and canonly get forjurisdictionsthat publishit), but even similarly namedthat’s useful
  • 91. New feature: officersEarly stage:we’re stillfetching theinfo (and canonly get for other resourcesjurisdictionsthat publishit), but even similarly namedthat’s useful
  • 92. Still... Though it’s by far the biggest and best open database of companies is the world, there’s a lot more to do Lots of data we haven’t matched. Quite a few US jurisdictions we haven’t added, and some where the information is fairly laggy We’re starting to get official recognition (EU, G20, etc), but some company registers see as threat to their ‘business model’ Provenance is given for everything, so easy to identify source of ‘errors’
  • 93. Information is the currencyof democracy Thomas Jefferson
  • 94. ATA is the currencyInformation Dof democracy Thomas Jefferson