EUNOMIA provides a dedicated instance powered by Mastodon to enhance the user experience of Blasting News readers. The trial EUNOMIA environment is built on the so-called Vertical Channels which are online communities of engaged users around specific topics. Currently, Blasting News readers can discuss EUNOMIA articles featuring in Covid-19 pandemic and Tokyo 2020 Olympics channels.
Vertical Channels are supported by a unique technology developed at Blasting News that thematically aggregates editorially curated news. In this way, readers can stay informed around the topics of their interest without endless scrolling. Thanks to EUNOMIA, Blasting News dedicated channels now feature a button that links directly to a discussion environment, powered by Mastodon.
Blasting News readers can comment, share and endorse posts as they would do on any social media network. Yet, EUNOMIA environment provides its users the opportunity to rate the reliability of the information provided in an article actively participating on the content assessment. In this context, EUNOMIA readers prioritise trusts over likes having a say on what is communicated on online environments. Furthermore, EUNOMIA supports this trustworthiness assessment with dedicated tools such as the history of a post in the EUNOMIA environment, how certain characteristics have changed over time, the account age and the connections indicating potential trolls.
Furthermore, you can have the EUNOMIA app on your phone so you don’t miss the ongoing discussions. EUNOMIA DC is available on google play and App store.
Apart from the technical value of the trial for the development of the EUNOMIA solution, there are three main kinds of value that this approach is likely to generate: business value for Blasting News as an online publisher, business value for the publishing industry, societal value for the user community.
Let’s examine them in turn.
Business value for Blasting News as an online publisher
Blasting News places its utmost focus on the trustworthiness of its content. It has already been deemed a reliable and trustworthy source by NewsGuard, the international organization established to restore trust and accountability in the news industry. Now, it further expands on its success story of its original and innovative civic journalism concept, which promotes freedom of thought and self-expression of non-professional authors, by introducing a ground-breaking comments facility for its thematic groups’ discussion sections.
EUNOMIA environment provides a comments section to Blasting News readers that allows:
- Rich and dynamic interaction with other readers in a familiar social media style that breaks away from the typical static comments section
- Extended functionality supporting users themselves to evaluate the trustworthiness of posts, third-party content and comments
Business value for the publishing industry
Many digital publishers, such as online newspapers and magazines, are in a tenuous relationship with the leading social media providers that nowadays serve as primary marketing tools. In exchange for getting access to audiences, these organizations allow social media to use their content to attract more users and advertisers. However, traditional media companies cannot control who, at what rate, and in what way will display ads alongside their content. They cannot impose rules and stopping mechanisms to advertising that might affect the credibility of their content.
EUNOMIA “nudges” readers to become lifetime and engaged members of a permanent, decentralized and privacy respectful supporting community.
The combined use of EUNOMIA with Mastodon offers digital publishers a true ownership of their social media experience. They can decide how their social media platform is used and how the aggregated use of its content can be monetized. Furthermore, the code is open source and free, guaranteeing control over the platform infrastructure.
Societal value creation
EUNOMIA enhances the potential of co-regulating the quality of digital content encouraging its users to assess themselves content trustworthiness. EUNOMIA supports users in this process providing dedicated tools enabling them for example to look into the provenance of online content, recognise the tone of language among other characteristics.
Overall, this is an excellent example of micro co-regulation, as is the use of blockchain technology in establishing the integrity of the data sharing. Unlike the current regulatory scenario applied to centralised social media such as Twitter or Facebook – who have to choose between absolute inclusivity or taking on the role of publishers and editors – future EUNOMIA-powered social media players can remain neutral platforms allowing their users to take ownership of their content and its trustworthiness.