How explanatory journalism combats misinformation on the web

by IJNet
Oct 30, 2018 in Digital Journalism

Understanding explainer articles’ importance, learning from The Economist’s chat app experiment and more in this week's Digital Media Mash Up, produced by the Center for International Media Assistance.

Can explanatory journalism cure the Internet?

Last December The Washington Post shuttered its online column “What was fake on the Internet this week.” For a little over 18 months, columnist Caitlin Dewey, with a wry smile and a wink to the fantastic urban legends our society is capable of creating and our citizens are eager to believe, humorously debunked each week’s most entertaining and outrageous online hooey. However, as she perused the Internet for outrageous claims, she realized that misinformation isn’t just an innocent manifestation of the human penchant for mystery and myth; it’s also big business. (Brookings, 2/26)

Lessons from six weeks of The Economist's experiment with chat app Line

At the end of January, The Economist started distributing its content on Line, joining the ranks of news organizations such as The Wall Street Journal, BBC and Mashable.

Now, six weeks after The Economist became active on Line, it has almost reached 100,000 subscribers (98,738 at the time of writing), after publishing 249 posts. (, 3/3)

Why STAT is the media startup to envy

Nearly four months after its launch, it’s more apparent than ever that STAT is the media startup to envy. The new national publication dedicated to covering health, medicine and science has the structural support of a traditional outlet — in this case, The Boston Globe — and a large staff that, collectively, has at least a century of journalism experience behind it. At the same time, STAT has a distinctly entrepreneurial agility and energy, and the freedom to carve out a unique voice for itself. (Columbia Journalism Review, 2/23)

Gawker staff ratifies first digital media contract for Writers Guild

Gawker’s editorial staff has ratified the first digital media contract negotiated by representatives at the Writers Guild of America East.

The WGA East said Gawker’s 99-member bargaining unit approved the contract by an overwhelming margin. The guild touted the contract as a milestone in its efforts to organize digital media workers to join the labor movement around the world. (Variety, 3/1)

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Main image CC-licensed by Flickr via Nicolas Nova.