New website seeks to hold journalists accountable

Oct 31, 2011
A Wikipedia-style website launched on Monday which provides information about the journalists behind the bylines. News Transparency is a creation of Ira Stoll, the founder of another website called FutureOfCapitalism.com and the former managing editor of the now defunct New York Sun.

A Wikipedia-style website launched on Monday which provides information about the journalists behind the bylines.

News Transparency is a creation of Ira Stoll, the founder of another website called FutureOfCapitalism.com and the former managing editor of the now defunct New York Sun.

In a statement on its home page, newstransparency.com, the website said its goal is to help users "find out more about the people who produce the news" and "hold them accountable, the same way that journalists hold other powerful institutions accountable, by posting reviews and sharing information."

News Transparency features an alphabetical list of hundreds of journalists and invites users to edit their profiles, which include basic biographical information such as age, education, current employer and work history.

The profiles also includes links to a journalist's social media accounts, articles written about them, their political party affiliation, their charitable donations and their "professional" and "personal" networks.

"Today, polls show public distrust of the media at a record level, and academic research shows that roughly half of newspaper stories contain errors," News Transparency said.

"This site aims to improve the accuracy, quality, and transparency of journalism by making it easier to find out about the individual human beings who produce the news -- human beings with opinions, relationships, history, and agendas," it said.

"That information should help readers, viewers, and listeners put what they are reading in better context, and it may even prompt some improvements by the journalists," it added.

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