12/17/2018

Hawaii Public Libraries Join NewsGuard in News Literacy Partnership

Hawaii Public Libraries Join NewsGuard in News Literacy Partnership

Patrons at all 51 branches in the state can now see credibility ratings of news sources they
encounter while using library computers

(Honolulu, December 17, 2018) The Hawaii State Public Library System has teamed up with
NewsGuard to spread news literacy to library patrons state-wide.

NewsGuard is a new company that uses trained journalists to rate news and information websites
using nine criteria that assess credibility and transparency. Nutrition Labels accompanying each
rating explain how the site measures up against these journalistic criteria.

With its free browser extension, NewsGuard displays its ratings next to links on search engines
and social media feeds. By installing the extension onto hundreds of computers at its 51
branches, Hawaii is giving patrons more context for the news they encounter online and helping
them build critical news literacy skills.

“We have access to more information than any other time in history. With so many people
producing content, it is important to have tools that help us make good decisions about the news
we are reading,” said State Librarian Stacey Aldrich. “Adding this service on computers used by
our library patrons continues the long tradition of librarians arming readers with more
information about what they are reading.”

With support from Microsoft Corp., which is sponsoring the NewsGuard news literacy initiative,
NewsGuard aims to improve media literacy nationwide by making its browser extension
available as a free teaching tool. The company now works with library systems representing
public libraries across the country, and is also partnering with middle schools, high schools,
universities, and educational organizations to support their news literacy efforts. The Hawaii
State Public Library System was the first to join the partnership, and it has been a leading voice
in encouraging other library systems across the United States to participate.

“Hawaii is paving the way for other libraries and educators to join our efforts,” said Sarah
Brandt, Vice President of News Literacy Outreach for NewsGuard. “By installing our browser
extension on more than 700 library computers across the state, Hawaii is recognizing the
importance of news literacy and highlighting NewsGuard as a simple yet powerful tool.”

When NewsGuard releases a new rating of a site, the rating automatically spreads to all
computers that have its browser plugin installed. Thus, when a Hawaii library patron encounters
an article from a hoax site in his or her Twitter or Facebook feed, he or she will immediately see
NewsGuard’s Red badge next to its headline, which advises readers to proceed with caution and
links to the accompanying Nutrition Label for a detailed explanation.

“NewsGuard’s goal is the same goal librarians have always had: to arm people with context
about their sources of information so that they can decide which sources to trust,” said
NewsGuard Co-CEO Steven Brill. Our hope is that the more people see our ratings, which
include detailed explanations of why we gave each rating, the better they’ll be able to make the
same kinds of judgments for themselves in the future.”

With the support of Microsoft, which is helping sponsor NewsGuard’s news literacy efforts
through its Defending Democracy Program, NewsGuard continues to expand to schools,
universities, and libraries across the country. Readers interested in bringing NewsGuard to their
school or library can visit NewsGuardTech.com or contact Sarah Brandt at
sarah.brandt@newsguardtech.com.

In addition to the news literacy program, NewsGuard expects social media and search companies
to license its ratings and reviews and integrate them into their news feeds and search results.

About Hawaii State Public Library System:
The Hawaii State Public Library System is the only statewide public library system in the United
States. With 51 branches on six islands, the Hawaii State Public Library System provides
opportunities for learning 21st Century skills and literacies, connecting people to the world of
information and ideas, and creating spaces for community engagement.

About NewsGuard:
Launched in March 2018 by media entrepreneur Steven Brill and former Wall Street Journal
publisher Gordon Crovitz, NewsGuard provides credibility ratings and detailed “Nutrition
Labels,” conducted by trained analysts with diverse backgrounds based on nine journalistic
criteria, for thousands of news and information websites. NewsGuard’s ratings are available
through NewsGuard’s browser extension for Chrome, Edge, Firefox and Safari browsers and are
displayed next to links in users’ search engine results and social media feeds. NewsGuard’s
ratings can be licensed by platforms that wish to make NewsGuard’s ratings available to their
users. For more information: www.newsguardtech.com.

Contacts:

Hawaii State Public Library System:
Mallory Fujitani
Office of the State Librarian
(808) 586-3714 or (808) 321-8972
Email: mallory.fujitani@librarieshawaii.org
Web: http://librarieshawaii.org

NewsGuard:
Steve Brill, Co-CEO: steven.brill@newsguardtech.com, 212 332 6301
Gordon Crovitz, Co-CEO: gordon.crovitz@newsguardtech.com, 212 332 6407
Sarah Brandt: sarah.brandt@newsguardtech.com, 612 440 9833

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