Credibility Indicators

Winning Back Reader Trust Starts with Establishing Credibility

Readers Often Look to the Wrong Signals for Credibility

Introducing Civil Credibility Indicators

Our goal is to provide greater transparency into the reporting process. We’ve identified the following four credibility indicators to help readers better assess information as it’s reported — each of which will be highlighted as applicable to a given article. Writers will be able to select the indicators that apply to their piece, and the selections will be verified by their editors.

What Our Credibility Indicator Dashboard Looks Like

Credibility indicator

We want to inspire more reader confidence that the information presented is factual and thoroughly reported. We want to encourage our community to read with a well-trained eye, to be unafraid to ask critical, probing questions of journalism, on Civil’s platform and beyond. Was an article reported locally or from afar? Where does the information cited come from? Is this original reporting, secondhand analysis, or both?

Civil readers will be more empowered to follow up on sources and independently verify information, instead of simply being told by someone else that they should trust a given article. As a result, we believe that Citizens will feel more confident acting on information from a given article — whether that’s simply sharing it with their friends and family, or changing their vote on a given issue due to newly discovered information.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on these Credibility Indicators, and the role we hope they’ll play in promoting greater media literacy worldwide. Do our research and insights resonate with your own experience? Would you use these criteria to evaluate articles you read in the future? Sound off in the comments section below, or get in touch with us directly.