Congratulations to the Dutch/Flemish association of investigative journalists, the VVOJ, who emerge in a European Parliament report today as the champions of truth and light, bestrid their noble charger of probity, spearing with their lance of virtue all corruption, fraud and general naughtiness.
The report 'Deterrence of fraud with EU funds through investigative journalism in EU-27' took five and half months to write, and concludes that there "are clear examples" of the contribution journalists have made in this regard.
The scale of the contribution, however, "cannot be made, due to the complexity of the matters."
Somewhat easier to assess, however, is the contribution a certain organisation has made to the Good Fight.
"Since 2002, the Dutch-Flemish Vereniging van Onderzoeksjournalisten VVOJ has played an important role in the professionalization of the investigative craft" the report says.
"VVOJ is a driving force behind internationalization, cooperation and creating a networking investigative community," it gushes further.
"VVOJ at its annual conferences created an environment of sharing experience and training in the latest (investigative) techniques, to the level where many Dutch (national and regional) newsrooms now have reporters capable of taking on (data) searches and number crunching," the European Parliament report continues.
"Data journalism, however, is ‘hot’ for its innovative possibilities, ... including initiatives by VVOJ to raise the professional level of investigative journalism."
In fact, the organisation gets 79 name-checks throughout the document! An extraordinary feat, outshining references to many of the journalists themselves listed in the annex, some of whom profess never to have heard of the VVOJ.
You know, the VVOJ, the organisation headed by Margo Smit, who authored for the European Parliament the recent report on investigative journalis.... oh.
Thanks to @BrunoBrussels for the spot on that there twitter. For the record, he gets 20 mentions...