This is my website and blog. I use it to publish some of my own articles, archive old pieces and post links to material I publish elsewhere.
Mostly my work is produced in Inner Sydney on the land of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation. This land was never ceded.
I am particularly interested in stories which are of public interest but fail to get a fair run in the media. Within dwindling mainstream resources, especially in the field of local journalism, and a narrowly focussed news agenda, I come across such stories every day but can only manage to do a few of them.Examples of under-covered stories are my series on the Paddington Bowling Club, a New Matilda investigation of Sydney Packer casino and Winning on Welfare Street.
I have worked for independent, alternative and mainstream media. I was also a contributing editor to New Matilda and have reported for Crikey, the Sydney Morning Herald , The Conversation and GuardianAUS in recent years.
In the 1980s, I was an investigative journalist at John Fairfax and Sons, Channel 9 and SBS. I have also contributed to the ABC.
I am an investigative journalist who is also a political activist. This means that I want my journalism to be useful to those who resist abuses of power and seek social justice rather than supporting existing power structures, which is what a lot of journalism does. My emphasis is on information that I hope will empower people to take action.
I am a long term member of the Australian journalists' union, the Media Arts and Entertainment Alliance (MEAA). In my reporting, I apply the MEAA code of ethics. I strive for accuracy and the truth. If you see any factual errors in my work please contact me. I welcome comments.
As a journalist, I have an absolute ethical obligation to protect the confidentiality of my sources. I prefer to do 'on the record' interviews but understand that sometimes this is not possible for sources. In accordance with media ethics, I apply a public interest test to all stories that could involve potential invasions of privacy similar to what is suggested in the Press Council's Privacy Principles.
For more than four years, I was very actively involved in the campaign to prevent the construction of a massive tollway system for Sydney called WestConnex. WestConnex is now controlled and more than half owned by Transurban, which already has a near-monopoly over Australia's tollways. Although it proved impossible to stop WestConnex, there are still many questions to be asked and stories that need to be told about WestConnex. Many of my stories about WestConnex were first published in the independent local newspaper City Hub.
Ever since I was imprisoned briefly as a result of anti-censorship campaigning in the early 1970s, I have been interested in women in prison and miscarriages of justice. This interest led to me meeting Roseanne Beckett while she was serving a sentence in Mulawa. All my stories about this case have been archived on this blog.I have also had a long time interest in the the issue of deaths in custody, which I am pursuing again in 2021.
I worked at the University of Technology for 21 years. After I left full-time employment at UTS, I became an honorary Professor at the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism. In 2011 and 2013, the ACIJ published two or my reports on how the Australian media covers climate change. UTS closed the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism in 2018.
I am also on the Board of the Pacific Media Centre based at the Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand and edit a section of the Pacific Journalism Review Frontline which links practice based journalism research ( especially in-depth, investigative and computer assisted journalism) with journalism studies.
In late 2019, I contributed to EXTRA!EXTRA!, a newspaper edited by Lucas Ihlein in collaboration with artist Ian Millis. it was published on a small press inside Art Gallery NSW as part of Making Art Public, a retrospective of 50 years of Kaldor Public Art Projects. The project allowed me to develop my interest in the connections between history and journalism. My contributions and an introduction to my involvement in this project can be found on this blog.
I give talks, speeches or facilitate events, always on a voluntary basis. I enjoy sharing my experiences and hearing what others have to say so if you're interested, contact me. In recent years, I've participated in a panel at the Older Women's Network conference and an event about the disappearance of Juanita Nielsen; chaired a seminar of doctors speaking out their concerns about Julian Assange for Consortium News and given a talk to the Pyrmont History Group. I am also involved in a community Air quality network.
You can follow me on twitter at @Wendy_Bacon or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.