They Are NOT Broke—Snopes’ GoFundMe Is a Scam To Fund a Dirty Divorce

Tuesday, July 25, 2017
By Paul Martin

The fact checking website, Snopes, has launched a GoFundMe, claiming to be broke. But if we look behind the scenes, we see what’s really going on.

By Matt Agorist
July 24, 2017

Snopes is in trouble. According to a self-launched fundraiser, the ostensible fact-checking website, founded in 1994, is on the financial ropes and needs your support to stay open. A GoFundMe for the supposed hoax-debunking site has since been set up and is going viral. If it continues raising money at this current rate, it will easily surpass its goal of $500,000 by the end of the day.

While Twitter followers flock en masse to throw money at David Mikkelson, one of the controlling partners in the Snopes business, they’d do well to understand why it is he has no money.

Snopes, as a business, is not broke. David Mikkelson — who’s been accused of defrauding the website to pay for prostitution — is broke.

Snopes’ estimated value is in the tens of millions, with a daily revenue intake around five figures — a day. They are currently ranked in the top 2,600 websites globally as well as being in the top 700 domestically. The behemoth ‘fact-checker’ is nowhere near being broke.

However, thanks to a dirty divorce between David Mikkelson and his ex-wife Barbara Mikkelson, the company has turned into a glorious shit show.

If you read their GoFundMe page, David alleges the site is being “held hostage” by a “vendor” it contracted with in 2015 and ended its ties with this spring. He claims that the Snopes site and this “vendor” are engaged in a legal battle that could eliminate their “financial means to continue operating the site and paying our staff (not to mention covering our legal fees) in the meanwhile.”

However, as the Nieman Lab at Harvard University reports, that legal battle seems to be an argument between Snopes co-founder David Mikkelson and his ex-wife, Barbara Mikkelson, over control of the company.

The “vendor” mentioned in the GoFundMe is Proper Media, Barbara’s side of the Snopes business venture she began after the divorce in 2015.

Essentially, David Mikkelson is begging for money to fight his ex-wife for control over their fact-checking empire. He even notes this on the GoFundMe page, “(not to mention covering our legal fees).”

As Nieman Lab notes, Snopes parent company Bardav, Inc. and the vendor, Proper Media, filed complaints against each other over issues stemming from that contract termination. Snopes alleges that Proper Media continues to control the advertising on, and is withholding revenue from those ads from the Snopes team. Proper Media, meanwhile, alleges that David Mikkelson “has engaged in a lengthy scheme of concealment and subterfuge to gain control of the company and to drain its profits.”

The Rest…HERE

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