'Poligraft' Tool Lets You Follow the Money From Your Browser

Poligraft.jpg


A new tool from the Sunlight Foundation embeds campaign finance information right into online news stories. Poligraft automatically exposes financial relationships between people and organizations, a function that would have required deep journalistic digging just a few years ago.

I ran a few of our political stories through Poligraft and not every one pulled up much interesting. But sometimes, the tool does reveal an important piece of context.

Take our recent story about John McCain's battle to find out more information about a satellite program that's currently administered by Lockheed Martin. Run the story through Poligraft and it highlights John McCain and Lockheed Martin, then calls up a campaign finance database to tell you how much money ($131,475) the company has given to the politician.

Campaign finance information has long been publicly accessible online, but it's rarely right at your fingertips when you might want it. Sunlight has effectively shrunk the distance between the data and the news -- and we love it.

There's even a browser bookmarklet that lets you follow the money with a single click.

Presented by

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Technology

Just In