Looking forward to the future of journalism

Meet the real reporter in the new Netflix movie ‘The Most Hated Woman in America’

Adam Scott plays a reporter based on John MacCormack in Netflix movie

“The Most Hated Woman in America” is a new Netflix movie about Madalyn Murray O’Hair, an outspoken atheist who mysteriously went missing in Austin in 1995 — along with $600,000. No one knew what happened to her. And it’s likely no one ever would if it hadn’t been for a series of investigative articles written … Read more

Adrift: Hot-air balloon pilots face little scrutiny from FAA despite higher crash rates

Kubicek balloon flown by Skip Nichols

After a deadly balloon crash killed 16 people near Lockhart last summer, my boss, projects editor David Sheppard, asked me to look into the safety record of the hot-air balloon industry and find out how someone like Alfred “Skip” Nichols could be allowed to pilot balloons with a string of DWI convictions on his record. … Read more

If you think newspapers are lame, here are big stories in San Antonio you missed in 2016

Express-News headquarters in San Antonio

The next time someone tells you newspapers are irrelevant, tell them to read this blog post. I get it. Newsrooms are shrinking, subscription are going up, and it feels like there’s not enough time in the day to read some dusty old newspaper — even if it comes in a slick digital version. But that … Read more

Interactive map shows how Bexar County voted in the 2016 presidential election

Election Day in Bexar County

Hillary Clinton lost the election — but not in Bexar County. We can see which parts of the county and San Antonio supported Clinton or GOP presidential winner Donald Trump thanks to the Bexar County Elections Department, which releases precinct-level voting results after every election. This interactive map we created from the data follows a … Read more

How shoe-leather reporting uncovered a bizarre bankruptcy tied to Senator Carlos Uresti

Patrick Danner story about Carlos Uresti

Earlier this year, Express-News business writer Patrick Danner set out to write a story about the rising number of oil and gas companies going bust in South Texas. What he found instead was a bizarre saga about a bankrupt company accused of fraud and its hidden ties to Texas state Sen. Carlos Uresti, D-San Antonio. … Read more

What’s Evernote for? How about making a vast, searchable archive of all your files

Evernote

Evernote turns eight years old this week. But even after all these years, some people have trouble grasping what, exactly, this mystical app is supposed to do. Is it for taking notes? Saving bookmarks? Taking photos? All of the above? Everyone’s needs are different. But for me, Evernote really shines as a vast, searchable archive … Read more

Police reports about people who die in custody are late, missing in Texas

Texas Custodial Death Report

With so many controversial deadly force incidents in the news that raise questions about police tactics, wouldn’t it be great to have a reliable system in place to keep track of lethal police encounters to get a handle on how often they happen? The good news is, there’s a statewide system in Texas to track … Read more

How to check safety inspections for any elevator or escalator in Texas

View from the Tower of the Americas

The elevators at the Tower of the Americas in San Antonio look like something out of the Jetsons. Yet every once in a while, the futuristic contraptions get stuck, stranding people hundreds of feet in the air. Last week it happened again. Firefighters rescued 14 people, including two children, who were trapped inside a stalled … Read more

Check out the sponsorship agreements that raise millions for UT Austin athletics

Corporate sponsors at the University of Texas at Austin

It’s no secret that corporate sponsors help fund the richest collegiate athletics program in the country at the University of Texas at Austin. After all, company logos are plastered everywhere at games. But what are the details of those sponsorship agreements? How much does each company spend? And what do they get in return? Thanks … Read more

Up in Flames: Flares wasting natural gas in the Eagle Ford Shale

If you drive through the bustling oil patch of the Eagle Ford Shale near San Antonio, it won’t take long to find the surreal sight of flares burning natural gas like perpetual bonfires. Natural gas is cheap. Pipelines are expensive. So instead of collecting the fossil fuel, many oil and gas operators build tall, metallic … Read more