The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Democracy Fund, and the Rita Allen Foundation have announced an open call for ideas that address the question, How can we improve the flow of accurate information?
Through the Knight Prototype Fund, up to $1 million in grants of $50,000 will be awarded to technologists, journalists, designers, teachers, researchers, and others working to address concerns about the spread of misinformation and build trust in journalism. With a deadline of 5:00 p.m. on April 3, the funders are seeking ideas on topics ranging from but not limited to the role of algorithms in news consumption, methods for separating fact from fiction, building bridges across ideological divides, and strategies for ensuring that journalism organizations are perceived as authentic by the communities they serve. The grants, which will be announced in June, include a two-day training session focused on the use of prototyping to flesh out an idea.
"The spread of misinformation erodes trust in our democratic institutions and fans the flames of hyper-partisanship," said Tom Glaisyer, director of the Democracy Fund's Public Square program. "Democracy Fund is committed to supporting innovative ideas to combat viral deception and reinvigorate trust in the press. We hope this prototype fund sparks significant creativity and collaboration. Good ideas that help sort fact from fiction and promote civil dialogue can come from anywhere: rural and urban areas, red states and blue states, from the coasts and the middle of the country."