News with no strings attached? The Real News Network receives neither government nor corporate support to run its newsrooms in Toronto and New York. This week, the site features the riveting ‘Winter Soldier’ testimony in which U.S. veterans describe everyday harassment, mistreatment and killing of Iraqi citizens by American troops. Meanwhile ProPublica – a U.S.-based news website supported entirely by donations – has recently appointed an editorial board of senior U.S. journalists to oversee the largest news staff in American journalism dedicated solely to investigative journalism. Will these sites survive outside a traditional business model – and fulfill their promise to deliver ‘real news?’ In the accompanying video, RNN’s Paul Jay makes his pitch to the public (click “More”).

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Patricia W. Elliott is a magazine journalist and assistant professor at the School of Journalism, University of Regina. You can visit her at patriciaelliott.ca.