Exaro is finalist for ‘best investigative journalism’, ‘breaking news story’ and ‘top editor’

By Exaro Team | 27 May 2015

“The judges were very impressed with what they saw” – Online Media Awards

Exaro has won three nominations in this year’s Online Media Awards for its outstanding journalism.

We have been named as a finalist in the awards for ‘best campaigning or investigative journalism’ for work that led to the overarching inquiry into child sex abuse.

We have also been shortlisted for ‘breaking news story of the year’ for: ‘Operation Midland’ investigates Tory MP over boy’s murder.

And our Editor-in-Chief, Mark Watts, has been nominated in the awards for ‘online editor of the year’.

The nominations in the leading awards for online journalism are a tribute to the ground-breaking work of Exaro, an investigative website that launched three-and-a-half years ago.

They recognise how a new, new-media outlet has led the field in exposing an extraordinary scandal over child sex abuse by people in prominent or powerful positions.

The Online Media Awards introduced the list of nominations by saying: “This year has seen a record number of entries submitted, with the standard all round being extremely high. The judges were very impressed with what they saw, but ultimately only the best work was nominated.”

The Guardian, Press Gazette, Vice News, Channel 4 News, ITV News, and the BBC are among other finalists in this year’s awards.

Exaro has set the news agenda in the UK as it has been lifting the lid on the ‘Westminster paedophile network’ for more than two years.

This led to a cross-party group of seven MPs last June to call on the government to set up an overarching inquiry into child sex abuse.

Exaro’s Twitter followers tweeted at other MPs to ask whether they would back the call. The campaign quickly gathered momentum, and soon 146 MPs were backing the call before Theresa May, home secretary, last July announced the inquiry.

Exaro has been nominated for ‘best campaigning or investigative journalism’ for this work. These articles also earned Exaro a nomination for ‘campaign of the year’ in the British Journalism Awards last December.

Meanwhile, also last July, Exaro ran a report about how two witnesses were alleging that they were sexually abused as boys at Dolphin Square, an apartment complex near Parliament.

That article prompted the Metropolitan Police Service to launch ‘Operation Midland’, an investigation into allegations of child sex abuse at Dolphin Square and other locations.

And in November, Exaro was able to reveal that Operation Midland was investigating allegations that a boy was murdered by a then-sitting Conservative MP.

This article has been nominated for ‘breaking story of the year’.

In the newspaper industry’s Press Awards this year, Exaro was also shortlisted, with the Sunday People, for a series of reports on the ‘Westminster paedophile network’.

Exaro has frequently found itself shortlisted alongside mainstream media in the industry’s major awards.

We were nominated in the Online Media Awards last year – again, for ‘best campaigning or investigative journalism’ – for a series that exposed how Rupert Murdoch admitted in a secretly-recorded meeting to knowing for decades that his newspaper journalists were paying public officials.

And just seven months after our launch, we were shortlisted and “commended” in the Online Media Awards in the same category for articles that revealed how senior civil servants were avoiding paying tax at source by working ‘off payroll’.

The winners of this year’s top honours at the Online Media Awards will be announced on June 10.

Media across the world have reported on how Exaro has been uncovering the ‘Westminster paedophile network’.

Update 10 June 2015: Exaro was commended for ‘breaking news story of the year’ in the awards ceremony tonight, for revealing last November how police were investigating an allegation that a young boy was murdered by a Conservative MP during a sexual attack.

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