James E. O'Keefe III (born June 28, 1984) is a conservative American activist who has produced videos of public figures that were shot undercover. He came to national attention after publishing recordings of workers at Planned Parenthood in 2008 and at ACORN in 2009. The videos were shot via hidden camera in order to capture his targets' unguarded behavior, and he has used the videos to represent his targets as unethical, irresponsible or biased.
Some of O'Keefe's projects have generated controversy and have influenced Congressional votes. Some of his sting operations have been discovered by his targets, with one resulting in O'Keefe's arrest and conviction; others have resulted in lawsuits filed against him. O'Keefe's videos have been examined by law enforcement agencies and news organizations, and they were found to have been selectively edited to misrepresent his subjects and deceive viewers. His example has motivated a public debate on what it means to be a journalist and on what constitutes good journalistic practice when false pretenses are used.
O'Keefe became politically active while at Rutgers University. He cofounded a conservative student paper, the Rutgers Centurion, which publicized his first undercover video in 2005. After graduating he continued to produce videos, partnering with pro-life activist Lila Rose in 2007. In 2009 Andrew Breitbart paid him for the option to publish new videos on BigGovernment.com exclusively. In June 2010, O'Keefe formed a 501(c)(3) organization, Project Veritas, with the stated mission to "investigate and expose corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct."