Craig Newmark and citizen journalism

Ever since we ran across this interview with craigslist founder Craig Newmark, we’ve been bugging him for more information about his interest in “citizen journalism.” A cup of coffee and a couple of chats later, we’ve come away with this: Newmark is intently interested in advancing the citizen journalism movement. Although his plans are still sketchy, he’ll likely start with a personal financial investment. But his interest may eventually come to involve craigslist itself.

“As a consumer of news, I’ve learned that there’s too much important stuff which isn’t printed or which is distorted on the way out,” he told us. “One example being news out of the White House. We need to fix it.”

“We, meaning the public, need to evolve a trusted institution with lots of fact-checking that we can trust and that we can prove does provide honest news.”

Newmark said his own role would be behind-the-scenes: “I want to help other people do the real work. I’m no news man. I’m not much of a businessman. I’m just one persistent nerd.”

The full interview with Newmark will appear soon in the Mercury News.