Let’s dive in: The Associated Press (A.P.) is among the most influential media outlets in the world for its massive audience and “fact-checking” role on social media. In light of a recent A.P. “fact check” that was debunked by Upward News, it’s worth identifying the people shaping this institution.
Catch up: The A.P. editor who authored the fact check — and who writes most others — previously worked at the media rating website Newsguard. The company, funded by the Department of State and the Pentagon, works to divert readers and advertisers from “unreliable” websites. The editor once targeted Upward News with a fact check that reduced our social media reach.
But there’s more: The A.P. is governed by board members with deep ties to left-wing advocacy, censorship, and government initiatives.
- Maribel Perez Wadsworth is head of the Knight Foundation, which has bankrolled Newsguard and the Global Disinformation Index, another state-funded group targeting media outlets.
- The Knight Foundation helped launch a research center that partnered with federal agencies to censor election and vaccine-related content. It also co-founded a Soros-funded think tank that lobbies against GOP efforts to curb censorship.
- Lisa DeSisto is the CEO of a group that acquired several local newspapers after receiving funds from progressive donors, including George Soros.
- Kevin Mowbray is a board member (and former chair) of the American Press Institute, which is supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and a pro-Biden billionaire’s organization.
Who pays for the A.P.? Groups that promote transgenderism, Supreme Court packing, climate initiatives, and race-based advocacy have heavily donated to the A.P. Some sponsorships are used for explicitly political goals such as covering “the intersection of race and voting.”
Why it matters: The A.P. has merged with the same political forces that journalists once held accountable. Meanwhile, its age-old reputation as an “independent” news source ensures its continued influence.