[DISCLAIMER] Always seeking “truth” and the means to reliably find it, we are pushing the follow-up to “Locally Green” (scheduled for this week), to a later date. Instead, check out this interesting development in the field of news reporting. Obviously, this early in the process, we cannot endorse this organization, but it is, at least worth a look.
With the power of online transparency, together we can beat fake news.
Jimmy Wales (founder of Wikipedia) has just this week initiated a new journalism platform called “Wikitribune”. Like Wikipedia, “Wikitribune is a news platform that brings journalists and a community of volunteers together. We want to make sure that you read fact-based articles that have a real impact in both local and global events. And that stories can be easily verified and improved.”
Seeking to “fix” the news, Wikitribune is attempting to bring control of the dissemination of factual information back to the community. Mr. Wales suggests that “social media, where most people get their news these days, is literally designed to show us what we want to see, to confirm our bias.” This trend “fundamentally breaks the news”. Wikitribune is being launched to help correct this problem.
The principles are simple.
Articles must be fact based with named sources: “Supporting Wikitribune means ensuring that journalists only write articles based on facts that they can verify…that you can see their sources. “
Ad-free content is free for all readers: Wikitribune will present no pay walls, giving all people open access to all content. Furthermore, the site will be completely ad-free, permitting no corporate influence to shape the nature of the information presented.
The community and hired journalists are equal… “Articles are authored, fact-checked, and verified by professional journalists and community members working side by side as equals, and supported not primarily by advertisers, but by readers who care about good journalism enough to become monthly supporters.”
…with full financial transparency: Promising no compromise regarding financial influence, Wikitribune has plans to operate and publish its financials regularly. The staff journalists will be paid by subscription revenue—which is to say, by us.
This noble endeavor has only just begun. However, as Fortune magazine points out, this is not the first time such an idea has been proposed. These previous efforts did not meet with much success. Some critics question the possible success of Wikitribune. And yet, Jimmy Wales faced similar criticism during the launch of Wikipedia. We can see how that turned out.
Wikitribune is a good idea that needs our support. If you are one to jump feet first into the possible, donate now. If you are more of a wait-n-seer, take a look at the site, do some research about the project, and consider subscribing once they have reached their startup goals. Most of all, once Wikitribune is up and running, you might want to use the site as one of your news gathering tools.
For more information, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org