First Misinformation Newsstand Erected in Midtown Manhattan Aims to Educate News Consumers About The Dangers of Disinformation in the Lead-up to Midterms
The Columbia Journalism Review, the media industry’s leading press criticism publication, unveiled a first-of-its-kind newsstand in Manhattan to educate voters on how to identify disinformation. The stand is outfitted with false stories taken from the Internet and printed on newspapers and magazines that mirror the design of legitimate publications. The newsstand is located on the corner of 42 Street and Sixth Avenue, the busiest corner of Bryant Park.
“We embarked on this initiative to help people spot disinformation,” said Kyle Pope, editor and publisher of the Columbia Journalism Review. “For the first time, we’re taking false stories from the digital space into the physical space and placing it directly in the hands of real people. It makes these stories tangible in a way that forces you to think about the source of the information.”
The project, created by agency partner TBWA\Chiat\Day New York, transforms a New York City newsstand, loading it with real-looking newspapers and magazines. Inside, CJR has developed an educational reader’s guide that offers tips for recognizing disinformation in the news. The guide will also be available online.
The Fake-Info Newsstand was inspired by “Real Journalism Matters,” an ad campaign, also developed by CJR and TBWA/Chiat/Day New York, that debuted earlier this year. The campaign was featured in the New York Times with a full-page ad, as well as in the most recent print issues of CJR. It was recognized with the 2018 Silver Clio Award.
“Eighty percent of Americans believe that false news is hurting the country, but only 30% can identify disinformation,” said Chris Beresford-Hill, Chief Creative Officer of TBWA\Chiat\Day New York. “Seeing these outrageous stories elevated to the front pages of what appear to be reputable publications should be jarring, and remind people of the dangers of misinformation, especially as we head into the midterms. The newsstand and its contents emphasize the crucial importance of well-sourced news, and the trusted journalists and outlets that produce it.”
Started in 1961, the Columbia Journalism Review is published by the Columbia Journalism School and is the world leader in press criticism and reporting. In addition to its print magazine, which was a finalist this year for a National Magazine Award, CJR also publishes on the web at www.cjr.org, as well as a daily email newsletter and a weekly podcast. It provides fast-turn analysis and deep reporting on the tech companies and social media platforms that are shaping the media landscape; covers state and local journalism through its United States Project; and publishes in-depth academic research in partnership with the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism.
About Columbia Journalism School
For more than a century, the Columbia Journalism School has been preparing journalists in programs that stress academic rigor, ethics, journalistic inquiry, and professional practice. Founded with a gift from Joseph Pulitzer, the school opened in 1912 and offers a Master of Science, a Master of Arts, a Master of Science in Data Journalism, a joint Master of Science degree in Computer Science and Journalism, the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Communications. It houses the Columbia Journalism Review, the Brown Institute for Media Innovation, the Tow Center for Digital Journalism, the Ira A. Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights, and the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma. The school also administers many of the leading journalism awards, including the Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards, the Maria Moors Cabot Prizes, the John Chancellor Award, the John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Journalism, Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma, the Paul Tobenkin Memorial Award, and the Mike Berger Awards. Journalism.columbia.edu
Chantal De Soto