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The endgame of Craigslist founder’s $85 million in donations to journalism

By Quartz

Craig Newmark is using his wealth to try to restore trust in journalismRead full story

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  • How do we support, and propagate, truth in a post-modern, social media-connected world?

    “The end point will be when there is a collection of news publications that are trustworthy and maintain the trustworthiness given the testing performed by networks of fact checkers.”

  • Akshat Rathi
    Akshat RathiSenior reporter at Quartz

    Like many tech billionaires, Craig Newmark is investing in journalism to save it. But he has a theory of change that's unlike others.

  • James Cakmak
    James CakmakEntrepreneur | Tech Analyst

    The fact checkers component is scary. Who polices the fact checkers? I think he would be better served in investing in platforms that show a commitment to quality and the truth to ease the burden on ad dollars (impressions), which is the source of hyperbole. Those platforms can then afford to directly monetize with their readers who value the content through subscriptions. The freemium model simply doesn’t work in the way it was intended anymore. Sure it will again later when readers coalesce around

    The fact checkers component is scary. Who polices the fact checkers? I think he would be better served in investing in platforms that show a commitment to quality and the truth to ease the burden on ad dollars (impressions), which is the source of hyperbole. Those platforms can then afford to directly monetize with their readers who value the content through subscriptions. The freemium model simply doesn’t work in the way it was intended anymore. Sure it will again later when readers coalesce around quality, but not now.

    Where Craigslist was ahead of his time was on privacy. He understood the need to protect it. Well, until Google and Facebook turned things on its head by choosing to monetize the data itself rather than the content.

  • Max Lockie
    Max LockiePlatform Editor at Quartz

    I just think that his money is misplaced. He's giving it to people who mean well and care about journalism, but in general I think this is one of those "dancing about architecture" scenarios and the best way to spend money to support journalism is to give money to people actually doing journalism that you want to support. To be brutally honest, I don't think giving $25 million to Columbia University is going to do a damn thing to improve journalism in America.

  • Anthony Duignan-Cabrera
    Anthony Duignan-CabreraCEO at ADC Strategy

    Charity is a balm not a cure. All the philanthropists in the world won't save journalism without fixing the main problem, a revenue model undermined by the Duopoly.

  • Craig Newmark has wonderful intent. Unfortunately, there is too much attention being paid to saving the dying business model of journalism, rather on rebuilding the countervailing force of journalistic “sunlight” as a disinfectant to corrupt power.

    At least one of the people Craig is backing does not appear to be as committed to reviving journalism as to perpetuating the status quo online.

  • Chris McCauley
    Chris McCauleySoftware Engineer

    I agree that his opinion which Internet company like google, facebook have to grow journalism.

    His donation is respectful.

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