He’s cute. He’s useful. And we’re paying him absolutely nothing. Our newest staffer is a robot.

Meet Twitter bot.

Here’s the skinny: Twitter bot is an automated service that combs through the past day’s campaign contributions in the 2016 elections in San Diego. It zeroes in on the ones that are $1,000 or more and sends out a message on Twitter with details.

The bot doesn’t require human hands and it delivers the latest campaign finance information right to your Twitter account. We thinks it’s neat. Here’s an example:

We thank our friends at the Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting, who launched the first campaign Twitter bot in the southwest two months ago and an ingenious developer we’ve got on contract.

We’re aware that not everyone uses Twitter, so if you don’t — now’s a good time to sign up. Then, you can follow our bot at @inewsource_bot. It will be tweeting out between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. every day up until the election.

We hope to do more of this type of automation in the future, whether it’s through Twitter, Facebook or our website — but we could use your support. If you find our work valuable, and find the bot — or the idea of the bot — intriguing, please consider supporting us.

1010111010100110,

Brad Racino
Assistant director and senior reporter

Brad Racino is the assistant editor and senior investigative reporter at inewsource. He's a big fan of transparency, whistleblowers and government agencies forgetting to redact key information from FOIA requests. Brad received his master’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri...