Say Goodbye to Parachute Journalism.


Shoeleather is a national database of writers from non-media hub cities (NYC, L.A., D.C., SF) who are local, knowledgeable and ready to tell their community stories. The database serves as a resource for publications, assigning editors and beyond to connect with writers in the towns, cities and states they are interested in covering instead of relying on “parachute” journalism.

Working as a journalist today is difficult enough, and trying to do so outside of the cities that serve as a nexus for publications can be daunting—particularly if you’re a writer from a traditionally underrepresented community, just getting started or aren’t part of the (let’s face it, insular) networks where assignments are often doled out.

Why should someone from Brooklyn get to be the authority on the stories from your community? With Shoeleather, editors can never say, “But we just don’t know anyone on the ground!” ever again.

Press, etc.

Better Local Journalism, by Local Reporters, Is the Goal of a New Database

New York Times

The bedrock of the best traditions of American journalism is on-the-ground reporting by professionals who know and live the story. We need more local reporting, boy do we ever, and this strikes me as a wonderful idea.

-Dan Rather
CBS Evening News and 60 Minutes

Need a local reporter in [state] with [expertise]? This directory wants to blow away parachute journalism

Harvard University