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Fabrice Florin
Executive Director
Newstrust
Mill Valley, CA

http://www.newstrust.net
fab@newstrust.net
775 East Blithedale (#320)
Mill Valley, CA 94941
Work: (415) 388-6688


"The consolidation of mainstream media, combined with the rise of opinion news and the explosion of new media outlets, have created a serious problem for democracy: many people feel they can no longer trust the news media to deliver the information they need as citizens . . . .[t]hough we are non-profit and initially funded through donations, we plan to run the venture as a sustainable business, and to generate revenue in the online market to support this project. Revenue streams include license fees and revenue shares from our partners, as well as memberships, online advertising, and content transactions from our own site."
Fabrice Florin, at the Newstrust website

Summary:
Non-profit effort to allow users to measure the quality of news stories

NewsTrust is a California-based non-profit which began in 2005 developing an online social network to help people identify quality journalism - or "news you can trust." As of February, 2006, the service was still in "beta".

"Our members will rate the news online, based on journalistic quality, rather than popularity or ideology," says Fabrice Florin, director and founder. "Our free website and news feed will feature the best and the worst news of the day, selected from thousands of blogs and mainstream media."

FROM THE WEBSITE:

    "In a culture where critical thinking skills are increasingly being drowned out by ideological and market forces, NewsTrust offers a unique opportunity for citizens to collaboratively search for truth online, through reasonable inquiry rather than impulse or blind faith. By enabling the "wisdom of the crowds," we expect this community-based online network to bring about broad scale social change.

    "A recent market study shows strong interest in NewsTrust across party lines, and latest tests show that citizen reviewers using our tools can evaluate the news as reliably as experienced journalists. Based on this feedback, we are now completing development of our first pilot, for a private launch in a couple weeks. Our initiative is rapidly gaining momentum with concerned citizens, educators and journalists, and we have already signed up thousands of volunteers for this project. Given this encouraging response, we anticipate steady growth as soon as NewsTrust launches publicly in 2006."

NewsTrust is led by Florin, a former journalist and a digital media pioneer at Apple and Macromedia. The team includes award-winning journalist and media executive Rory O'Connor and former Lucasfilm product manager David Fox. Our advisors include Dan Gillmor, Howard Rheingold and other digital media innovators from organizations like Google, Harvard, MoveOn and others. Based in Mill Valley, Calif., NewsTrust is a non-profit project funded through grants and private donations and sponsored by The Global Center, an educational foundation based in Manhattan. So far, $250k has been invested.

"Though we are non-profit and initially funded through donations, we plan to run the venture as a sustainable business, and to generate revenue in the online market to support this project. Revenue streams include license fees and revenue shares from our partners, as well as memberships, online advertising, and content transactions from our own site," says Florin.

With a 25-year track record in digital media, Florin has developed a wide range of leading-edge products and services in the fields of education, entertainment, journalism and technology. A former journalist and a digital media pioneer at Apple and Macromedia, Fabrice founded NewsTrust to help citizens make informed decisions based on quality journalism. As executive director for this non-profit venture, he is donating his full-time management services on a pro-bono basis.

Fabrice’s previous venture, Handtap, is a best-of-breed provider of multimedia content for mobile phones. Handtap has joined forces with market leader GoComics to offer a wide range of popular comics for your phone, featuring Garfield, Doonesbury and many more. Handtap animations, wallpapers, and applications are sold by the top US carriers, as well as leading distributors worldwide.

As Macromedia's VP of online entertainment, Fabrice launched shockwave.com, a popular web site featuring games, cartoons, music and greetings. Fabrice led content and web teams at this major entertainment destination, publishing hundreds of top-rated titles, such as South Park, Dilbert and Frogger. Before joining Macromedia, Fabrice was president of Zenda Studio, an award-winning software and game developer. There, he created innovative user interfaces and software environments for market leaders including Disney, Electronic Arts, Microsoft, Philips and Sony.

Fabrice was executive producer at Apple Computer, where he produced widely acclaimed educational CD-ROM titles and interactive TV applications, honored with four US patents. As founding member of Apple's Multimedia Lab, he pioneered the use of multimedia and produced groundbreaking education titles with partners ranging from Lucasfilm and National Geographic to the BBC and Smithsonian. Before joining Apple, Fabrice was president of Videowest, an innovative TV production studio, where he created a new genre of video journalism, widely distributed on outlets ranging from ABC to MTV and public TV. Fabrice produced and directed many acclaimed TV specials, such as Hackers, a classic documentary about the midnight programmers that created the personal computer revolution.