Star joins Facebook and Cronkite School to build trust and fight misinformation

The Kansas City Star is partnering with Facebook and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication to strengthen transparency and trust between news providers and consumers.

The Facebook Journalism Project is the initial funder of the project “to battle misinformation and help the public find new ways of engaging with the news,” according to an announcement Tuesday from Arizona State University, which is home to the Cronkite School.

McClatchy is the first media partner, and The Star is the first of three McClatchy newspapers to participate. The other two will be announced later.

“We’re very pleased that Kansas City has been chosen as the launching pad for what promises to be a terrific partnership,” said Mike Fannin, editor and vice president of The Star. “We see this project as another plateau in our continuing efforts to better serve readers.”

The Facebook Journalism Project grew out of a working group at ASU this spring of experts from around the world to fight misinformation.

“The launch of News Co/Lab at ASU is a great step forward in accelerating the growth of news and media literacy,” said Campbell Brown, Facebook’s head of news partnerships.

The first project “will help newsrooms work with their communities to develop innovations that increase transparency, engagement, mutual understanding and respect,” ASU said in its announcement.

“We are delighted to partner with Arizona State University’s Cronkite School and Facebook to develop innovative ways to strengthen news literacy and build trust between citizens and newsrooms,” said Craig Forman, president and chief executive officer of McClatchy. “We know that local news is essential to thriving communities, and the results of this timely and important collaboration will guide not only McClatchy newsrooms, but also serve as a best-practices template for the media industry.”

Cronkite News, the student news division of Arizona PBS, will be a test bed for lab experiments.

Matt Campbell: 816-234-4902, @MattCampbellKC