Character Profile: Stephen Janis

Steve Janis is Senior Reporter and Content Director for the Baltimore-based website Investigative Voice. Investigative Voice is exactly what the name implies – a home for classic, gumshoe-style investigative reporting that leaves no stone unturned. Janis was previously a reporter for the Baltimore Examiner, but he made the website, which he was planning while working for the Examiner, his main job when the paper folded in 2009.

Janis uncovers stories that would probably not see the light of day were it not for his site. He spends every day on the streets of Baltimore, talking to people, meeting sources, and uses his eyes and ears – a ‘reporter’ in the truest sense. Investigative Voice has done slice-of-life dispatches from some of the city’s worst neighborhoods, investigated a forgery that resulted in the firing of a city employee, and reported extensively on the resignation of Baltimore mayor Sheila Dixon. The site also occasionally ventures outside Charm City, reporting on an unusual spate of red-baiting in an Upstate New York Congressional election.

Janis’ story – urban, gritty, East Coast – provides a an excellent visual counterpoint to that of M.E. Sprengelmeyer. He is another pioneer who is refusing to take the industry’s transformation sitting down, taking what is meaningful about journalism and pushing it into a new era. His platform may have changed, but his voice has not.

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