eBay founder Pierre Omidyar commits $100m to fight ‘fake news’ and hate speech

The billionaire founder of eBay is to donate $100 million to fund investigative journalism and to combat the spread of misinformation online.

Pierre Omidyar, one of the world’s richest men, aims to tackle the “global trust deficit” by giving money to projects around the world.

The funds will be dispersed over the next three years through the Omidyar Network, the philanthropic investment firm which he and his wife founded in 2004 and which has committed more than $1 billion to good causes.

The first recipients include the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the group behind last year’s release of the Panama Papers, which will receive $4.5 million.

The Anti-Defamation League will also receive a grant towards the building of a new centre in Silicon Valley to fight the growing threat posed by online trolls.

“What we’ve seen over the last 12 months particularly has been an increase in distrust – distrust in government institutions, in the media and in social media,” said Stephen King, partner at Omidyar Network.