For the first time in the online news site’s history, “The Shade Room” has taken home a shiny new Scripps Howard award for best investigative journalism.
TSR’s coverage of the latest developments in the ongoing musical feud between rappers Kanye West and Drake snagged the esteemed award for its use of a cutting-edge Internet reporting tool: the hashtag #TSRReactionz- to tell an impactful story.
The 68th Scripps Howard Awards for journalistic arts winners were announced this August. News reporting heavyweights such as the “Associated Press”, “The Atlantic”, “The New York Times” and @FunnyHoodVidz were among this year’s winners in each category.
The story went courageously in detail about Kanye and Drake’s Twitter beef that stemmed from rumors that Drake planned on releasing his latest album, “Lover Boy” on the same day as Kanye West’s long-awaited project “DONDA”. It was also revealed that in a leaked demo version of “DONDA” from July, Kanye reportedly dissed Drake in two songs, which is just foul.
In late August, Kanye tweeted this statement at Drake: “I live for this. I’ve been f***ed with by nerd ass jock n***as like you my whole life. You will never recover. I promise you.”
Drake’s wack ass didn’t respond with anything of note, but he did post a picture of his upcoming album’s art that was just as corny as one would expect.
“I live for this. I’ve been f***ed with by nerd ass jock n***as like you my whole life. You will never recover. I promise you.”Source: a now-deleted tweet from Kanye
“The Shade Room” covered each development with painstaking accuracy, with one of TSR’s staff reporters even going so far as to acquire information from an anonymous source (the source approached North West at her private school and asked “why is your daddy mad at 6 God? 🥺”) working on Kanye’s social media team.
TSR upheld the standards for reporting set by last year’s recipient of the award, “The Atlanta Journal Constitution” who investigated efforts by a local oil-drilling company to cover up a spill that polluted a significant portion of the East Coast’s waterways. Although each report was related to a different subject, both revealed important information that took bravery to investigate.
The tweet wars reached a climax when Kanye posted a tweet that included Drake’s home address, but then deleted it minutes later. Using #TSRReactionz, TSR was able to revolutionize discussions about the long-standing but scarcely covered 14-year beef between the two celebrities, that most of us had honestly forgotten about.
Users of Instagram and followers of The Shade Room were able to instantaneously watch the drama unfold online in a reality-tv style barrage of new IG feed posts.
In a statement released on TSR’s Instagram page and website, the team expressed gratitude for the recognition and pride in the staff writer who covered the story, Brianne D.
TSR was nominated for an additional award, the Scripps Howard Award for Grapevine Journalism- a prize allocated to the news organization or person who spreads gossip news in a “quick, instantaneous, and barely fact-checked manner.”
TSR was nominated in this category for beat reporting completed this past March on the journey of Gorilla Glue Girl and her rise to infamy-slash-potential Gorilla Glue sponsorship. However, 50 Cent was instead crowned the winner of this award for posting seven different #crate challenge memes in one day.
As a pop culture outlet, TSR’s audience already trusts the news organization as a speedy and reliable source for the latest hot gossip. The win of the Scripps Howard award signifies TSR’s expansion into a more highbrow publication also trustworthy of hard-hitting deep reporting.