Pirate Fishing

Read about the project on Medium here, or start the investigation at this link. You can also watch the original film on which it is based here.


As far as we know Pirate Fishing is the first gamified, interactive, online investigation in the world! Set in Sierra Leone, the audience takes the role of a journalist and films South Korean trawlers fishing illegally in protected coastal areas stealing fish from local fishermen. By watching clips the user follows the journalistic process starting with the first sighting of the trawlers until their arrest. At the end of each clip he/ she sees what information has been collected for example destroyed nets, photos of ships with hidden names, and snapshots of crew members.

EJF interactive Env

By entering this information into the right sections of the notebook – differentiating between criminal evidence, notes and background – the user scores points and and advances in status from junior researcher to senior investigative journalist.

The project also contains several virtual environments where the player can decide how to proceed with the investigation and can try to convince officials to act!

The tool highlights the investigative journalism process of evidence-collection, fact checking and note taking. “The game highlights how news stories are created, and the benchmarks needed to qualify your reporting.

A teachers kit is available at this link. Pirate Fishing has been used to teach journalism at schools and universities.

Awards and Nominations:

Juliana receiving One World Media award.

  • Winner: ONE WORLD MEDIA 2015 – Winner Digital Media Awards
  • Winner: WEBFEST BERLIN 2015 Transmedia Section
  • Winner: New York Cinevana Festival 2015 – New Media Category
  • Winner: WRIF 2015 – Transmedia Contest
  • Finalist and Special Jury Mention: European Digital Media Awards, Best New Product Category
  • Finalist: Prix Europa – Best Online Project
  • Official selection and exhibition in interactive festival gallery: Sheffield Doc/Fest 2015, LA Film Festival (New Media Festival), FIPA, Festival International des Imagines Colombia, New York Festival of New Cinema, Seattle Film Festival, Freezone Film Festival Belgrade
    Exhibited at the Games for Change Civic Journalism Challenge, NYC, Nov 2015
  • Juliana is particularly proud that Pirate Fishing was promoted by WAN-IFRA and the American Journalism Educators Association for use as a journalism teaching tool in classrooms around the world.