While you were sleeping, a new social network popped up. Jimmy Wales, co-founder of Wikipedia, has created WT Social, the WT standing for Wiki Tribune. Although it bears the Wiki name, the rookie network is not financially associated with Wikipedia.
WT: Social went live last month and currently has around 78,000 followers. It’s similar to Wikipedia in that its business model operates on donations rather than advertising. If you want to sign up for free, you’ll have to get on the waiting list. But you can pay $13 or $100 to use the network immediately.
Right now there’s not a whole lot going on at WT: Social. It’s basically a news feed with comments underneath each story. What makes it stand out is that it claims to be dedicated to fighting fake news. “[It highlights] evidence-based coverage over the focus on ‘engagement’ seen on other networks,” says Insider.
“Each story posted to the network makes prominent where the article comes from, as well as sources and references.”
Instead of using moderators to monitor the news content, WT: Social works like Wikipedia, relying on its community of users to ensure accuracy. In addition to allowing you to comment on news stories, WT: Social lets you join sub-groups, which focus the news feed on stories about more specific topics.
Wales told the Financial Times he hopes WT: Social can attract 50 million users – or even a half billion. He expects people will be willing to pay for “meaningful” content.
It will be interesting to see how WT: Social holds up against the likes of Facebook and Twitter. Others, like Vero and even Twitter’s own video app Periscope, have already tried and struggled to find footing.
“Any service that dares to encroach on the territory of Facebook or Twitter (or, for that matter, Amazon, Apple or Google) tend to be outplayed, outmaneuvered or simply bought,” says Mashable. “Facebook is even said to have systems in place that identify competing technologies, with the aim of somehow killing them off.”