Nov 3, 2017 - Economy

Scoop: Steve Brill's new start-up

Founder of American Lawyer Steven Brill in 2001. Photo: Ed Bailey / AP

Steve Brill — founder of American Lawyer, Court TV, Brill's Content, and the Yale Journalism Initiative — has almost finished raising $6 million to launch News Guard, which will rate news content so search and social-media platforms can help their users know what to trust.

Why it matters: Brill has a long track record of successful journalistic start-ups. And he's attacking one of the biggest problems in media today: News consumers have trouble distinguishing between credible content and fake news, and the tech platforms have done little to help them.

Startup details:

Rating will be done by "qualified, accountable human beings," not algorithms.Brill's co-CEO will be Gordon Crovitz, a Wall Street Journal columnist and former publisher of the paper.They'll hire 40-60 journalists, who will be "well-paid."They expect to have a product for U.S. users by mid-2018.The business model: NewsGuard will charge a license fee for platforms and aggregators, who will make it available to users.The company will create brand awareness by giving browser versions free to news literacy groups, school systems, etc.

Go deeper