News & Updates

The Trust Project's Sally Lehrman

A big week for the Trust Project

Since our official launch of the Trust Indicators on Nov. 16, it’s been an exciting ride. Director Sally Lehrman took a rare moment to reflect on this milestone in a LinkedIn article. In it, she poses the question that started it all: Could we use algorithms to help people find trustworthy journalism instead of cat videos and police mug shots? A few years, and an international collaboration of 75+ news organizations later, the answer is a resounding yes.

The Trust Project Indicators on devices

Leading News Outlets Establish Transparency Standards to Help Readers Identify Trustworthy News Sources

Media Contact Deborah Lohse | SCU Media Communications | | 408-554-5121  Leading News Outlets Establish Transparency Standards to Help Readers Identify Trustworthy News Sources Google, Facebook, Bing and Twitter to use these “Trust Indicators” to highlight credible journalism SANTA CLARA, Calif., Nov. 16, 2017 —   At a time when the public’s trust in news is declining in much of the world, the news industry is launching a new set of transparency standards that help people easily assess the quality and reliability of journalism. Leading media companies representing dozens of news sites have begun to display Trust Indicators, which provide …

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Trust Project Receives Funding to Develop Trust in Media

As part of an initiative to rebuild trust in journalism, The Knight Foundation has provided $100,000 of funding to the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics’ Trust Project. As reported in Forbes, the Trust Project is “developing open-source software toolkits to help newsrooms convey their commitment to ethics, independence and inclusive, accurate reporting to the public.” Stories about the funding are also writtten in The Miami Herald and EContent. In a recent article for, Sally Lehrman, director of Journalism Ethics, discusses the Trust Project’s efforts to hold news accountable and to “try to move the whole field in the direction of improving quality, rather than …

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The Founding of the Trust Project

Journalism Ethics Director Sally Lehrman talks with Richard Gingras, vice president of news at Google, and Craig Newmark, founder of craigslist, about their inspiration for supporting and helping to shape the Ethics Center’s Trust Project.  The project is creating tools for readers to recognize trustworthy reporting and for platforms such as Google to identify and feature high quality journalism. The panel also discusses the problem of fake facts and other challenges to supporting an informed public.

Stories with Transparency

In a blog post for the Institute for Nonprofit News, Gabriel Hongsdusit wrote about the work that Sally Lehrman is doing with the Trust Project. “The Trust Project is providing actionable solutions to help newsrooms foster deeper audience engagement and highlight the competency, ethics and dependability of their work,” wrote Hongsdusit. Lehrman and the Trust Project have also been mentioned in a recent story in Nieman Reports.

The Fight Against Fake News

In an article for Fox 26 News, Sally Lehrman describes the efforts of the Trust Project to provide transparency regarding the media. “We hope that our trust indicators become the new standard, that’s what we’re aiming for,” said Lehrman. “It’s more about creating transparency of what are the workings behind the news, what goes into a quality story.” (Photo credit: Terry Johnston)

Developing Indicators of Trust

In an article for AP by Arek Sarkissian, Sally Lehrman comments on the work The Trust Project is doing to restore trust in the media. “What we hope to do is elevate the quality of journalism that you will see online,” Lehrman said. “With all of the fake news you see out there, people didn’t know where to turn to. The project will help readers become better informed.” Lehrman also discusses the work of The Trust Project in greater detail in this interview with Watershed Media.

Distrust in the Media

In a KALW program, Sally Lehrman participated on a panel discussing America’s continued and increasing distrust in the media and how the economics of journalism might be undermining our trust in the press. “We look to these basic traditional types of news organizations for information but we’re also getting information through these mediums and news distribution platforms…such as Facebook, and Google search and Twitter,” Lehrman said. “So that’s why it’s important to think about where are we really getting our information because it’s coming from the news organizations that are producing it, but then it can be distributed through a lot …

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Tackling the Fake News Problem

In a BBC article by Jane Wakefield, Sally Lehrman discusses the growing concern about fake news on Facebook and Twitter, and how the Trust Project is working to come up with tools to improve trust in the mainstream media. “We don’t know enough yet to know how [fake news] affected the election but we do know that fake news travels rapidly and it can change the conversation, not just by misinforming people but by focusing attention on something that may not be the issue,” Lehrman said. “I would be concerned if we relied on Google, Facebook and Twitter to solve the problem …

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Cracking Down on Fake News

Sally Lehrman, director of Journalism Ethics, has been quoted in multiple publications, such as The Guardian and  The Gospel Herald regarding her leadership of The Trust Project, an organization that seeks to restore trust in the media by establishing indicators of accuracy and truthfulness in news sources. The Trust Project was also referenced in a  Forbes article on fake news. “In today’s burgeoning and chaotic news ecosystem, it is difficult to parse truth from falsehood, wisdom from spin… We have seen a decline in trust in the media over a period of decades and the polarization across what types of media are trusted,” Lehrman said. ( ©  Milan …

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