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My more deeply reported pieces and narratives

I’ve done many deeply reported longreads. Some examples:

I explained how Expedia advertisements began to trail customers from desktop to mobile, in a ground-breaking marketing effort.

My May 2013 story on how an Accor executive had misused TripAdvisor ratings was cited by the New York Times

My reporting led to a major online travel agency, CheapOair, to disavow some dubious search engine optimisation practices.

I had another minor scoop here: Caught red-handed: Airbnb, TripVillas, and the curious case of a rogue spammer.

I also revealed how one US company had (mis-)handled a revelation by an ethical hacker of a security vulnerability in its payment process, which I was the first journalist to report on and which was a flaw affecting multiple companies.

A few years ago, I filed a US Freedom of Information Act request to find out what records the federal government had collected on me from my travels internationally. My travel dossier was picked up by several publications, like

I’ve been effective at generating off-diary stories. For instance, earlier this year, I wrote about a proposed switch by airlines worldwide from running their reservations systems on a 40-year-old programming language called Edifact to more modern XML-based languages. I interviewed sources over two months and subsequently produced a series of in-depth reports on the topic, like this summary and this set of screenshots.

Startup coverage is something I excel at, and I have reviewed dozens of startups for various publications. For Tnooz, I recently dug in to what happened to a Bulgarian-based business-to-business travel technology startup called Everbread, which had collected millions in venture capital funding but managed to disappear off of the industry’s radar.

I have many industry contacts, and they supply useful story leads. I was the first to report in July on a new consortium to create a pan-European booking tool for multi-modal transport. For instance, by cultivating contacts within Loco2, a UK rail-ticketing startup, I was the first reporter to publish a story about the Guardian’s decision to hire the company as a white-label provider for its Guardian Trains tool.

An earlier piece by me on the rise of peer-to-peer car hire schemes in the US was published in print and online by the New York Times.

I’m agnostic on storytelling formats. I’ve used six-second .gif files to explain the replacement of postcards with Vines, and I’ve produced a couple of videos and dozens of slide shows.

These heavily reported, “investigative” pieces supplement my main bread-and-butter work, which has been reviewing technology products and services for consumers, which I’ve honed since 2007, when I did a in-person factory visit at Blue Nile, the first online retailer of diamond rings, to my current regular gig reviewing consumer tools and websites for — where I’ve written 20 reviews in 2013 to mid-year.

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