16 years ago, Wales co-founded Wikipedia, one of the largest source of information on the planet. Now, he wants to take things few steps further to wage war against the increasing fake news on the internet.
Like the work of a typical newsroom, Wikitribune will feature stories by professional journalists, after their articles are fact-checked by volunteers. That way the platform will ensure maximum possible transparency about the sources of information for each piece.
“If we have a community guiding the work and we have people who are paying to be monthly supporters we can do the numbers and say, well for this many monthly supporters we can hire another journalist,” Wales told Wired.
“Which means if a group wants us to hire a journalist on a particular topic, whatever that might be, then we can do that.”
Wikitribune, which has already went live, has 28 days until the campaign for volunteers and crowdfunding ends. And it will be interesting to see just how many people buy into Wales’ vision.
The site will apparently operate in a similar way to Wikipedia, but pages won’t go live until a trusted volunteer approves it or any changes made to it. The ad-free site is asking supporters to sign up and make monthly contributions to fund. The site states:
Wikitribune is transparent about the way it operates and will publish its financials regularly. With Wikitribune your support will have more impact as most of the funds are used for paying journalists rather than expensive offices.
On that note, if we don’t reach our goal, of 10 journalists hired, we will refund all our supporters – minus transaction fees.
At time of publishing this article, 5146 supporters appear to have pledged cash to the project and 2 out of 10 journalists have been hired. You can learn more about the project and the progress HERE.