In my opinion, investigative journalism is one of the most interesting tasks of journalism. We've been told in the lecture that there are two main difficulties when journalists investigate:
The laws: you clearly can't hide bugs and cameras in a private place, you can't take/ borrow/ read documents/ data without the owner's consent - this is called trespass to goods. You can't enter an area by fraud (disguise, deception) where you're not allowed to, this is trespass to land. You can't threat, blackmail or hit anybody to get information, this is trespass to the person (dear, it seems that all the fun in investigative journalism is forbidden). Any of these actions are liable. However, you could justify trespass to goods and trespass to land in court if:
the information you got thanks to these mediums are in the public interest and
there's no other way of getting the information and
you must proved that you've tried to investigate in a legal manner.
The second difficulty can be the topic of your investigation. Trying to uncover illegal businesses/ secrets can be a very dangerous job, mostly if you work in a country where the police are corrupt. We've all heard of Veronica Guerin (above) whose strong interest in drug dealers led her to be murdered in 1996, in Dublin. She was a very brave journalist, and I think we should make the difference between stupidity and courage. Courage is about putting your life in danger and being fully aware of this danger. I believe that stupidity is just being ignorant of the danger. I don't know what motivated her, love of the truth maybe, though I would certainly have given up the investigation after having two bullets fired into my kneecaps.
I have found on the Internet the Fund For Investigative Journalism which gives grants to help reporters for specific investigations. The conditions are listed on the website.
Last summer,The Bureau of Investigative Journalism in London has been given a £2 million grant by the Potter foundation. They will use the grant to promote non profit journalism, in the public interest.