Determining Truth in the Era of Alternative Facts


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Jimmy Wales
co-founder, Wikipedia; founder, WikiTribune

SPEAKER BIO

The founder of the world’s fifth-most-visited website wants to use Wikipedia’s fact-checking mentality to go after fake news.

SUMMARY

With the number of local journalists decreasing, quality journalism disappearing and fake-news on the rise, Jimmy Wales is on a mission to create a platform for evidence-based journalism. Without disruptive ads, click baits or irrelevant content. Jimmy’s aim is to give the reader’s a unique feel and experience of not having encountered the same sort of news content elsewhere.

WikiTribune is a pilot project for a new approach to journalism where the community is at the center. It is not a news service — yet. It will only be the news service they envision when the community plays a full role. The goal to build a global, multilingual, high quality, neutral news service. In as many languages as possible, as fast as possible. The concern is being right, rather than being first. Reporting objectively, factually and fairly on the news with no other agenda than this: the ultimate arbiter of the truth is the facts of reality. That is WikiTribune’s main agenda.

One of the many challenges that WikiTribune is facing is asking people to put money forward for a project that is still in the making, the outputs yet intangible and the scope a rather difficult to scale. Mr Wales is convinced that asking people for involvement, starting global and then scaling down to reach local communities is the way forward.

Despite journalists being taught that objectivity is impossible, we should not stop trying. However, neutrality is non-negotiable. Treating each other well is non-negotiable. WikiTribune is about fun, doing things differently and doing things that matter. Jimmy Wales' vision of modern, high-quality journalism is when readers come to understand that they are an essential part of it by being involved and contributing.

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