Wikipedia's founder to launch Wikitribune, an evidence-based news site

Credit: Joi Ito.

Fake news have been making headlines for quite some time now. Major internet companies, such as Google and Facebook, have even partnered in Europe to fight them. Also, Google has recently updated its Fact Check tool and Facebook has launched an educational guide to its users about fake news earlier this month.

But Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia's founder, believes the problem is rooted on how current media outlets are funded. Our society is now connected as never before and hence advertisers are the main source of money for news companies, which are usually paid based on the amount of user's clicks.

In order to avoid such a system, Wales has decided to create a novel news organization dubbed Wikitribune. The organization would be funded by donations and, according to Wales, this new wiki-style website would bring to readers "fact-based articles that have a real impact in both local and global events". Also, by the aid of a team of journalists and a supportive community, stories could be easily verified and improved, following Wikipedia's example.

Wales explains his reasoning further in the following video for the Wikitribune launch campaign.

Wikitribune is still in its initial stages , and has already received donations from almost 7000 supporters and hired four of the aimed ten journalists for the main team. For those who want to support the idea, a monthly subscription is available, even though everyone will be able to read the articles without any kind of paywall. Finally, subscribers will be able to give their opinion on what subjects Wikitribune will cover, but no details were shared about how this is going to work.

Source: MIT Technology Review

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