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Elon Musk targets journalistic credibility with plans for Pravda rating site

As many sites draw their attention to tackling fake news and questioning the credibility of ‘journalists’, Tesla’s Elon Musk might have the answer. Taking to Twitter, Musk proposed that writers should be rated on their credibility, outlining plans for a new website, dubbed Pravda, to do exactly that.

This comes as a direct response to media reports surrounding his electric car company, and has since been applauded by fans on his social media accounts. Blogging site Electrek is highlighted by Musk as the main culprit, as he criticised its coverage of Tesla car crashes and pricing of its vehicles.

“The holier-than-thou hypocrisy of big media companies who lay claim to the truth, but publish only enough to sugarcoat the lie, is why the public no longer respects them,” reads the first in Musk’s Twitter rant. “Going to create a site where the public can rate the core truth of any article & track the credibility score over time of each journalist, editor & publication. Thinking of calling it Pravda …”

Musk explains that the point of such as site, that might instead take the name of “youreright.com”, is to redirect journalists’ priorities from maximising clicks and advertising dollars towards maintaining credibility. “Even if some of the public doesn’t care about the credibility score, the journalists, editors & publications will. It is how they define themselves,” continues Musk.

While vocal response has been fairly divisive over the effort, critiquing Musk for potentially undermining genuine criticism with a system that could be manipulated in a similar respect to other aggregate sites, 88 percent of 635,000 followers have already voted in favour of Musk’s media credibility rating site, that also flags propaganda botnets.

KitGuru Says: No matter whether you’re for or against Musk’s effort to clean up the lazy writing of some journalists, the numbers themselves showcase how disillusioned the public is with the current state of media sites. How much Pravda would help is debatable, but it’s clear that something needs to happen in order to restore good practices and the public’s faith. Would you use a site like Pravda?

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