We’re using the power of collective impact to bring peace to families of murdered or missing people by combining data, technology, and the wisdom
of the community.
More than 200,000 unsolved cases have gone cold since 1980, and murder clearance rates continue to drop. With equity for BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and other underserved victims not prioritized in the true crime community—together we can do better.
There are many tools in the cold case toolbox and no one person knows how to use them all to their full potential. Thankfully, you don’t have to. You just need to have a collection of people that do.
— Gene Miller, Pierce County Prosecutor’s Office, Criminal Investigator, High Priority Offender Unit,
National Best Practices for Implementing and Sustaining a Cold Case Investigation Unit
While the podcast Serial may have ignited new interest in true crime in the last few years, people are switching from entertainment consumption to a passion for activism to help solve cold cases.
We’ve created a step-by-step guide to develop your unique abilities, test your knowledge, and even discover new talents. We need more Citizen Detectives to polish their skills to join us at Uncovered!
What you’ll learn with this guide
• Spark new insights for how you perceive information
• Understand key components to request public information
• Support further education and skill development
• Evaluate key processes for data collection
• Engage diverse methods in desktop research
The guide also comes with work space so you can map out your next case and prepare for the launch of Uncovered to combine publicly available information, with the ever-growing wisdom of the crowd, to do something that matters and find the intersection of justice, peace, and closure for families.
What 500 people have to say about true crime
We heard you when you said:
“I would definitely already be willing; I just wouldn’t know where to start!”
“Knowing my own potential to help and being armed with tools to help without disrupting ongoing investigation”
“Being able to identify clear opportunities to gather information that (I) was not looking into.”
“Feeling like I could make a meaningful contribution to it. Is there a path to get my research to someone who could affect the outcome?”
We took notice when:
89% of those surveyed said that they look for additional info on cases on more than one platform.
62% of people say they would take action by collaborating with others if they knew the victim.
On average, true crime and cold case info come from 4 to 5 sources with podcasts and documentaries leading.
Families Deserve Answers; Victims Deserve A Voice, And No One Should Be A Statistic.
Together We Can
Make A Difference
We’re combining publicly available information, with the ever-growing wisdom of the crowd, to do something that matters and find the intersection of justice, peace, and closure for families. Stay up-to-date with the latest case details.
Online Sleuthing Community
One interesting group of people interested in true crime that has seemingly been growing quite rapidly is the online sleuthing community. To set a definition for what is a sleuth, we must first look back at the history and usage of the word sleuth, and consider some important factors. The official definition of a ‘sleuth’ is someone who investigates crimes, or a detective, specifically someone who acts as a detective. The term has several different names, including ‘web sleuth’, ‘citizen sleuth’, and even occasionally ‘internet sleuth’. It seems that the term originated and was first used within the true crime community on a website called ‘Websleuths’. Websleuths is an online sleuthing community which is focused mainly on discussing true crime cases and missing persons cases.
In recent years, it seems that users have been slowly migrating from Websleuths to Reddit, which is a massive network of communities where people constantly discuss any topic you can imagine, including true crime. Although a large amount of great discussions can be found occuring frequently on both Reddit and Websleuths, the two are known for being full of speculation and rumor starting and spreading within the true crime community, which can be extremely detrimental to unsolved cases. Anyone can join these websites and join in the conversations, no matter their intention, due to the ease of access. The process for how to become a web sleuth, how to become a citizen sleuth, and how to become an internet sleuth seems to be as simple as providing a username, password, and email for your account. Once all of these have been established in the website’s account creation pages, you can officially comment or add to discussions as a completely anonymous user.
Uncovered’s new and growing online community is inspiring and leading people like you to turn their interest in true crime, missing persons, and unsolved murders into advocacy, a mission that is completely different from websites like Websleuths or Reddit. The first way that they’re working to transform the community of those interested in true crime is by bringing forth a new name for those interested in this online work. Rather than calling their users or others interested in the genre of true crime and researching cold cases sleuths, they have chosen the term ‘Citizen Detective’. Billy Jensen, author of ‘Chase Darkness with Me’ and host of The Murder Squad podcast, sums up the definition of a Citizen Detective as a person who commits their time and knowledge to assisting in the resolution of crimes without any form of compensation or expectation of a reward. Now that you have this information in mind, if you’re wondering how to become a Citizen Detective, first look into Uncovered’s Citizen Detective Guide before you head over to Uncovered’s membership page to see their options for joining their citizen detective community and to learn a bit more about how you can turn your interest in true crime into advocacy in an ethical way. If you’re not interested in joining Uncovered’s community, you can rest assured that everything else that is included on the website can be viewed free of charge, including their several incredible resources.
Crime Sleuthing Forums
Crime sleuthing forums such as Websleuths and Reddit have given individuals the opportunity to participate in discussions regarding any true crime case they may have an interest in. The web sleuth meaning or definition seems to vary depending on who you ask. The official definition of a ‘sleuth’ is an individual who investigates crimes online, or who acts as a detective, specifically originating from a website called Websleuths.
If you are unaware of what Websleuths actually is, in short, it’s an internet community which focuses its discussions on crimes and missing persons cases, each within their own forum, such as missing persons forums, and even offering a web sleuth podcast that is available on most streaming platforms. If you’re wondering how does websleuths work, you can compare it to another network of online community called Reddit, which operates in a similar manner within the true crime community as another example of the various crime sleuthing forums. Examples of Websleuths and Reddit contain very similar, almost identical discussion formats within their various subreddits which are specific to different topics or cases.
Web Sleuth Jobs
Despite popular belief, there are not many web sleuth jobs available, specifically online, other than jobs within law enforcement or private investigators. Due to this fact, there are is no web sleuth salary, unless you are looking into a job in a law enforcement agency or any other official career in the criminal justice system. Websleuths itself is simply a free online platform where users can discuss true crime cases with likeminded individuals, not a place where you could work as a job.
Websleuths has countless forums for various types of crimes, and for specific crimes that are free for users to add to the discussions. Some examples of the forums that can be found on Websleuths include missing persons discussion, located persons discussion, websleuths crimes in the news, specific case discussions, trial discussions, and several others.
Web Sleuth Definition
The web sleuth definition in short, is an individual who investigates crimes or acts as a detective, specifically online within true crime forums, such as on Websleuths. Websleuths is an online sleuthing community in which users, or websleuths gather to discuss several types of true crime cases and related topics. Some examples of the various types of forums you can find on Websleuths include crimes in the news, websleuths missing persons discussions, located persons discussion, websleuths solved cases discussion, cold case discussions, specific case discussions, and even discussions focused on trials. In addition to the several forums that Websleuths has to offer, they also offer a crime forum UK, specifically for crimes committed in the United Kingdom.
Online Crime Solving Groups
Online crime solving groups have undoubtedly been growing in popularity in recent years as the genre of true crime becomes more popular. With massive growth within various forums such as Websleuths and Reddit, more people are discussing any form of true crime case imaginable, including websleuths cold cases, missing persons cases, and even discussing solved cases. Individuals who often take part in these discussions, which are usually full of theories, speculation, and even rumor sharing and spreading often call themselves web sleuths or internet sleuths.
If you find yourself wondering ‘what is a web sleuth’, or internet sleuth meaning or definition is an individual who uses the internet to search for information about a person or an event, basically acting as a detective while trying to ‘solve’ a crime. Even though most of the discussions within these online crime solving groups is most often focused on speculation and theory-sharing, occasionally these discussions lead to answers within cases. Some examples of crimes solved by the internet within various online forums and communities include the recent attack on the United States Capitol building, in which users of online forums were able to identify suspects from photographs and videos, before sending in tips to law enforcement officials. Another example of crimes solved by the internet is the identification of a Jane Doe, now known as Lynda Jane Hart, who was found in a vacant parking lot, leading to the solving of a 1988 missing persons cold case in 2011.