For Immediate Release — Sep. 28, 2022
Lindsay Taylor, Consumer Marketing Manager

The Seattle Times and the University of Washington launch monthly column on promoting healthy public discourse

SEATTLE — The Seattle Times and the University of Washington's Center for an Informed Public are collaborating to produce a monthly column with advice, insights and updates on identifying misinformation, finding factual information and what's being done to promote healthy civic discussions.

The Center for an Informed Public is a multidisciplinary research center with a mission to resist strategic misinformation, promote an informed society and strengthen democratic discourse. Experts from the CIP will write monthly columns that will appear Sundays as part of The Seattle Times Save the Free Press initiative. The Save the Free Press Initiative, launched in 2019 by Publisher Frank Blethen, seeks to inform the public about the journalism crisis and advocate for solutions. This initiative includes a weekly newsletter, a website and columns appearing regularly in the Opinion section.

"The experts at the University of Washington are an incredible resource,” said Brier Dudley, Free Press editor at The Seattle Times. “Sharing their insights and advice really dovetails with our initiative, which is ultimately about keeping Americans informed and sustaining our democracy."

“We are excited to partner with The Seattle Times. We share the common goal of promoting healthy civic discourse,” said Dr. Jevin West, associate professor at UW’s Information School who served as CIP Founding Director from 2019 to 2021. “Through this column, we hope to share from our research some of the challenges to healthy discourse in our current media system, the implications of widespread misinformation and disinformation and what we can all do to become better consumers, producers and sharers of information online.”

“I’m really looking forward to broadening our Save the Free Press Initiative with these columns,” Dudley added. “We not only need to save the local press system, but we also need to help people understand and navigate the evolving media world so they aren't bamboozled by truly fake news."

Look for the monthly column in print and online in The Seattle Times’ Opinion section beginning October 2. The column, and other Save the Free Press content, is available for other newspapers to publish. For more information on the CIP, please visit


The Seattle Times serves the Northwest with independent, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalism, as the region’s most trusted news media company, dedicated to public service. The Seattle Times is the most-visited digital information source in Washington state and the second-largest newspaper on the West Coast. The Seattle Times Content Studio is a division of the Advertising department that serves as a creative agency for brands and produces editorial content that is supported by advertising. Founded in 1896 by Alden J. Blethen, The Seattle Times’ stewardship is now led by the Blethen family’s fourth and fifth generations, whose stewardship also includes The Yakima Herald-Republic and The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.