“The Internet had the great characteristic of allowing everybody to be a publisher, but that was also the worst thing; everybody could become a publisher. From the point of view of news consumers, that meant it had become virtually impossible for people to tell the difference between a generally reliable … and generally trustworthy site, versus an untrustworthy site.”
– Gordon Crovitz, NewsGuard
Guest: Gordon Crovitz, NewsGuard
What are the dangers of an open Web where anyone can be a publisher? How do misinformation sites harm reputable news publishers? How are current economic and geopolitical conditions impacting the online information ecosystem? What is a News Nutrition Label and, if consumers can’t tell the difference, how are publishers of quality journalism distinguished from misinformation, hoax and pink slime news sites? How has programmatic advertising contributed to the misinformation crisis and how can advertisers ensure site integrity when buying ad space?
In the Season 2 premiere of News Take, News/Media Alliance VP, Research & Insights, Rebecca Frank sits down with Gordon Crovitz, co-founder and co-CEO of NewsGuard, about how his company is working to mitigate threats from online misinformation sites, which are often indistinguishable from real news sites. Gordon explains how the online environment has enabled the rampant spread of fake news and mis- and disinformation via hoax, pink slime and other sites that publish false and potentially harmful misinformation. He then shares how publishers, consumers, advertisers and other businesses, and government agencies can improve their awareness and identification of these sites to minimize their impact. In addition, he describes how news publishers can use NewsGuard’s Nutrition Labels to promote their credibility, both with readers as sources of accurate and trustworthy information, as well as with marketers as brand safe environments for their advertising.
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Gordon Crovitz is co-founder and Co-CEO of NewsGuard, which counters misinformation online on behalf of news consumers, brands and democracies. NewsGuard analysts rate and create Nutrition Labels for news and information websites, using basic, apolitical criteria of journalistic practice. Its ratings and labels are used by news-literacy partners including technology companies such as Microsoft and libraries, schools and misinformation researchers.
Gordon was publisher of The Wall Street Journal, where he was also the Rule of Law and Information Age columnist, and spent nearly 30 years at Dow Jones and the Journal, based in New York, Hong Kong and Brussels. He was CEO of learning company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He was co-founder of Press+ (sold to RR Donnelley), a technology company that enables publishers to generate digital subscription revenues. Crovitz graduated from the University of Chicago and received law degrees from Oxford University and Yale Law School.
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Members of the News/Media Alliance staff have contributed to this post.