INGO, Stockholm / FOKUS / 2018
Fokus is an in-depth news magazine in Sweden that believes quality journalism can make the world a more truthful place. In an era of fake news and click bait there is a risk that quality journalism and in-depth articles fades away in our social feed and don’t get the attention it deserves. Fokus wanted to change this by giving people a chance to promote their favorite in-depth stories.
“Read proof sharing” is a plug-in that measures your scrolling speed in combination with time spent on each article. This means you can only share once you’ve actually read the whole story. When the articles are shared in social media, they will feature a ”I’ve read it”-badge so other people can see that you read beyond the headline. We also released the plug-in as open source giving other publications or news outlets a chance for free to join the fight against fake news culture.
Click bait, poor journalism and fake news has been ruining our culture for too long. Even intellectual people fake their knowledge and spread articles/news they haven’t read nor understood. And there hasn’t been any way to divide the fakers from the non-fakers yet. To get people to appreciate quality journalism and manifest Fokus real news and value we realized that just spreading information about the problem wouldn’t be enough. The social currency, likes, shares etc of content is a part of the problem. We had to invent a new currency that was worth more than the current one. That made the old one useless. Separating diamonds from coal. The real from the fake.
Fokus launched the plug-in on their own news site fokus.se. Next to all sharing buttons we implemented our own Read Proof-button. Once you’ve read the whole story the button became shareable and you could share the article on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn with Read Proof Sharing. If you just glimpsed at the headline or skimmed the article the sharing-button would encourage you to read more.
When launched, Read Proof immediately sparked a dialogue with dozens of Swedish and international news publications. ”Read proof” sharing is available all of Fokus articles online.
Their readers can pride themselves with reading before sharing. We’re working on an open source plug-in if other news outlets want to install it as well. Fokus is in discussion with both international and national news outlets about this.