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Feb. 7, 2018, 2:28 p.m.
Reporting & Production
LINK: www.propublica.org  ➚   |   Posted by: Laura Hazard Owen   |   February 7, 2018

“We’re starting with questions, and we want you to join us in the quest for answers”: On Wednesday, ProPublica and WNYC dropped the first episode of Trump Inc., a podcast that, over 12 weekly episodes, will aim to delve into the mysteries of Donald Trump’s businesses. Eric Umansky, ProPublica’s deputy managing editor, and Andrea Bernstein, WNYC News’ senior editor for politics and policy, explained in a post:

We’re thinking of it as an “open investigation.” We’ll be laying out what we know and what we don’t. And we’re inviting everyone — our journalism colleagues elsewhere, experts, tipsters and anyone else interested — to join us in the quest for answers….

You can contact us via Signal, WhatsApp or voicemail at 347-244-2134. Here’s more about how you can contact us securely.

You can always email us at tips@trumpincpodcast.org.

And finally, you can use the postal service:

Trump Inc at ProPublica
155 Ave of the Americas, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10013

Trump Inc. builds on a previous collaboration between ProPublica, WNYC, and The New Yorker that investigated Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump.

“We’re going to figure it out as we go, and be open to lots of options,” Umansky told me. When ProPublica began planning the podcast, he said, “We were thinking about how, ultimately, our show is not about ProPublica in particular. It’s not about getting the largest audience. It’s not about having a hit show. It’s about doing accountability journalism that matters.” One goal is simply to bear witness to the moment — to pay attention to the fact that “the President remains the owner of a sprawling, active, and opaque business…and, fundamentally, we have no way of knowing if he is ever putting the interests of his company above those of the country. What we want to do is document that reality.”

Planning future episodes of the show right now means accepting uncertainty: “We don’t know what’s going to come up or what people might turn up,” Umansky said. Of course the team is hoping for reader tips, but this is “not all predicated on having the insider who’s going to send us the manila envelope of whatevers. We would welcome that, but success isn’t predicated on that.” One role of the audience, instead, will simply be to help ask questions and center thinking.

“It’s a whole range of help and thought that we want to avail ourselves of,” Umansky said. “The audience becomes another collaborator in the process of creating it with us.”

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