The so-called “fact-checking” website Snopes.com is reportedly on the verge of financial collapse.
Its founder and owner, David Mikkelson, has been accused of using company cash to fund his contentious divorce and to pay for fancy vacations with his new wife, a former escort and porn actress.
The financial situation has apparently become so dire that Snopes owner David Mikkelson launched a crowd-funding website to solicit donations.
Snopes Founder David Mikkelson with his new wife, Snopes staff member Elyssa Young
The site now has a page pointing to a site called SaveSnopes, which claims it is “in danger of closing its doors. So, for the first time in our history, we are turning to you, our readership, for help.” The reason? The free-to-use Snopes site has no sponsors, outside investors, or funding. It’s only source of revenue is online advertising. But that funding stream has been cut off:
SNOPES COMMUNITY: WE NEED YOUR HELP
Snopes is in Danger of Shuttering
Snopes, which began as a small one-person effort in 1994 and has since become one of the Internet’s oldest and most popular fact-checking sites, is in danger of closing its doors. So, for the first time in our history, we are turning to you, our readership, for help.
Since our inception, we have always been a self-sustaining site that provides a free service to the online world: we’ve had no sponsors, no outside investors or funding, and no source of revenue other than that provided by online advertising. Unfortunately, we have been cut off from our historic source of advertising income.
We had previously contracted with an outside vendor to provide certain services for Snopes. That contractual relationship ended earlier this year, but the vendor will not acknowledge the change in contractual status and continues to essentially hold the Snopes web site hostage. Although we maintain editorial control (for now), the vendor will not relinquish the site’s hosting to our control, so we cannot modify the site, develop it, or — most crucially — place advertising on it. The vendor continues to insert their own ads and has been withholding the advertising revenue from us.
According to London’s Daily Mail. Readers contributed more than $500,000 in just the first 24 hours. Note the post reveals absolutely nothing about Mikkelson’s lifestyle or spending habits.
As WND has reported, Snopes has been around since 1995. It is sometimes cited by other “fact-checking” sites to support their claims. Facebook has even indicated it plans to use Snopes as one of its arbiters of “fake news.” The site has been criticized by conservatives for a left-leaning bias and admits it has no standard procedure for fact-checking.
In a nasty divorce situation, Barbara Mikkelson sold her 50-percent equity in Bardav to Proper Media in July 2016. David Mikkelson claims it’s being held hostage by an outside vendor. But under the surface, there’s a fight between contending ownership groups.
Snopes staff, led by David Mikkelson, continues to “maintain editorial control” but Proper Media controls everything else, including ad revenue. The vendor will not relinquish the site’s hosting and continues to insert their own ads and has been withholding the advertising revenue.
Looks like sweet revenge from a scorned wife to me. According to a lawsuit between Snopes’ parent company, Bardav, and Proper Media, David Mikkelson has “engaged in a lengthy scheme of concealment and subterfuge to gain control of the company and to drain its profits.”
The lawsuit also accuses David Mikkelson of misusing Bardav funds for legal fees related to his divorce. He used the company to pay for travel expenses from when he went on a honeymoon to Asia with his new bride…Snopes employee and former hooker and porn star Elyssa Young.
Young, who was a Las Vegas escort until at least 2015, charged $500 for her services. She also starred in porn films as “Erin O’Bryn.”
What a mess people make out of their lives. Sad.
What happens when the fact checker gets fact checked? Snopes has been busted lying on numerous occasions. And Facebook uses them to ban accounts? Must see!!
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