Omidyar Network Pledges $100M to Fight Hate Speech, Bolster Journalism

Pierre Omidyar’s charity has promised to donate $100 million to support investigative journalism and fight back against hate speech and misinformation. The eBay founder’s charity, the Omidyar Network, has named the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) as one of the first recipients in the three-year funding commitment, and is due to receive $4.5 million. The Washington-based group was behind last year’s Panama Papers investigation, which revealed undisclosed offshore banking among leaders of several countries. The Anti-Defamation League will also be among the recipients, with plans for “a state-of-the-art command center” in Silicon Valley to combat hate speech online. “We think it’s really important to act now to keep dangerous trends from becoming the norm,” Stephen King, head of the network’s civic-engagement initiative, told The Washington Post. The official announcement about the funding commitment is due to be made in Oxford, England, on Wednesday. Omidyar, the 49-year-old Iranian American whose First Look Media launched The Intercept in 2013, was said to be “very involved” in plans for the $100 million funding initiative.