Dealflow | March 9, 2018

NewsGuard launches with $6 million in backing to fight fake news

The team at


Steven Brill, founder of The American Lawyer and Court TV, and Gordon Crovitz, former Wall Street Journal publisher, are launching a platform to review and rate 7,500 websites featuring news and articles in the US.

“We will tell readers the Denver Post is a real newspaper and that the Denver Guardian exists only as a purveyor of fake news,” Crovitz says.

NewsGuard’s launch is backed by 18 investors, including Publicis Groupe, the Knight Foundation and Blue Haven Initiative. NewsGuard plans to hire seasoned journalists to rate each site and write up a “nutrition label” that will describe its history, subject matter, ownership, financing, editorial leadership and other factors.

The novel solution: “Using human beings who will operate under a transparent, accountable process to apply basic common sense to a growing scourge that clearly cannot be solved by algorithms,” says Brill.

NewsGuard does not intend to flag political leanings or rate sources against one another.