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“Fake News.” It’s been used to discredit the media and cast doubt over its role. Bad practices do exist. But driving those practices are dwindling ad-revenues that are often tied to how many users look at their content. So publishers often have to try shady tactics in order to juice their numbers. Civil wants to change all that.
What is Civil?
Civil is a decentralized marketplace for journalism.
It seeks to provide an alternative funding mechanism for journalism that is based on the quality produced rather than third-party interest. This means the news is not subject to commercial interests but is rewarded for its accuracy.
It enables small companies and individual journalists to get paid more frequently incentivizing content that people - rather than advertisers - really want.
How does it work?
Civil is made up of those who write the stories, those who read them and those who vote on the content. This third category requires users to hold Civil's CVL token. Users purchase these tokens and can then vote for journalism that they like.
The publisher is then credited directly from the audience, creating a new revenue stream without the need to build it themselves.
Did you know?
Crypto podcast ZigZag is based on the Civil network and have interviewed ConsenSys founder Joseph Lubin about the promise of Civil.
What are Civil newsrooms?
Civil newsrooms are slightly different from regular ones. Each and every article produced is archived on the Ethereum blockchain, preventing any article from being changed or tampered with. It then makes all articles available to everyone who is part of the Civil network. In addition, by signing up to the Civil newsroom programme, small publishers can receive grants to help them develop their storytelling abilities.
To support news on them, you can:
💸 Pledge - a donation of any amount as a tip.
💰 Sponsorship - recurring payment, like a membership, that uses smart contracts.
What are the advantages of Civil?
🏦 Editorial independence - Writers are not subject to commercial interests.
💱 Crypto - It allows for easier crypto integration, providing a new funding source.
😎 User control - Civil token holders can hold the journalism to account.
🔑 Protected - There is a constitution designed to help protect the network.
What are the disadvantages?
👨👩👦👦 Centralized board - There is a Civil Council which is a last resort to decide matters if they are disputed. While this may be necessary, it reduces the level of decentralization within the platform.
👮 Control - Token holders have control over the journalism which means those with a large supply have a bigger influence. Civil claim there are limits to ownership but the tokens will be available on the open market.
What is the Civil Foundation?
It is a non-profit organization designed to support the Civil network. It will fund journalism directly by providing grants and will also conduct research into the Civil ecosystem. It will also work with the community to help enforce ethical journalism.
Did you know?
In October, 2017, Civil announced it had received $5 million in funding from ConsenSys.
Civil has had its hiccups. An initial token sale didn't quite go so well, and it's having to compete with large companies who are entrenched into every aspect of journalism currently. It will take a seismic shift to completely change the ad-funded model.
But they’re giving it a go. If it does work, it could spearhead a new era of responsible and accurate journalism.