The Week in Fact-Checking: German elections, fake news for Halloween, and everyone out of the Twitter pool

German voters go to the voting booth on Sunday and “fake news” has been less of a concern. A propaganda expert tells Correctiv that bots were dormant during the campaign. Still, Motherboard found plenty of misinformation spread from both Russian and American media outlets. The Alliance for Securing Democracy created a dashboard to track the Russian efforts. Either way, the regional broadcasters decided they’ll keep their fact-checking project running for two more years.

Quote of the week
“People sometimes say that it’s too hard to know what’s true anymore. That’s just not true. These results suggest that if you pay attention to evidence you’re less likely to hold beliefs that aren’t correct.”  —  Kelly Garrett, Ohio State University, about new research on truth and perception

Riots in Jakarta blamed on fake news
Hoaxes, misinformation and disinformation plagued Indonesian elections earlier this year. Now, the widespread sharing of false information is being blamed for riots this week that injured five police officers, says the Sydney Morning Herald.

Welcome to the future of journalism research
“All the cool academics are studying fake news,” reports Nieman Lab. Of 150 papers presented at last week’s Future of Journalism Conference in Wales, the most prevalent category was “fake news.” (H/T Rasmus Kleis Nielsen.)

What happens if ALL the journalists quit Twitter?
Glenn Thrush of The New York Times is just the latest in a string of journalists who’ve sworn off Twitter. But what happens to all the misinformation if all the truth-tellers leave?

Playing fake news whack-a-mole, with success
Three staffers, 56,000 Facebook followers, 5 million page views. Those are the stats behind Alt News, a 6-month-old program that’s trying to fight rampant misinformation in India.

Harvey, Irma and Maria
What have fact-checkers learned about covering hurricanes? Unfortunately, they’re still debunking that shark picture. But after three hurricanes in four weeks, Poynter’s Daniel Funke reports that a few lessons have emerged.

Explain your job badly
Quite an effective slogan from Full Fact (who, by the way, is still hiring for a tech lead).

A decade of Pinocchios
The Washington Post Fact Checker first launched 10 years ago. To celebrate, they compiled a video of all the times their iconic rating scheme was quoted by politicians both favorably and not so favorably.

Fact-checking with the stars
The CBS television show “Madam Secretary” debuts its new season next month with a storyline about fake news. “We show how it happens, where it comes from…why it is generated and how it is used as a political weapon,” the executive producer says.

Meet the IFCN’s 2017 fellows
Journalists from Serbia and Turkey were awarded this year’s IFCN fellowship. Milka Domanovic of Istinomer (left) will travel to the U.S. to embed with PolitiFact, while Gülin Çavuş of is headed to Paris to work with France 24 Observers.

Some fact-checking fun
The “fake news dress” made a splashy debut this week, but there are plenty of other fake news products out there for you to hate. … If you haven’t seen former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s cameo appearance at the Emmy awards this week, watch it here.

SciFacts is coming to Washington, D.C.
Poynter will host a free one-day workshop on fact-checking and science reporting at the National Press Club on Oct. 17. Sign up to learn how journalists can combat misinformation on the science and health beat, and cover evolving or contradictory findings without reducing trust in the scientific method.

12 quick fact-checking links
(1) It’s official: Poland has a fake news problem. (2) Just in case you need an example of bad Photoshopped fake news. (3) Faculty members at Boston University have launched a science fact-checking podcast. H/T Michelle Amazeen. (4) PolitiFact goes to Alabama, where people tell tall tales like this. (5) How did Russians get so good at “information wars”?  (6) Fact-checking documentaries isn’t easy. Here are some tips. (7) The new Republican Partysite does not, in fact, contain news or fact-checking. Nor does Verritt’s media-bashing fake-busting column deliver the goods. (8) The idea that fact-checking can fight misinformation is “a hoax” and “bullshit,” says one academic. (9) The UK’s EU bill is still not £350m per week. (10) FT Editor Lionel Barber gave a lecture on, wait for it, “Fake news in the post-factual age.” (11) A meta-analysis of debunking studies offers tips for fact-checkers. (12) Wired goes deep inside the Snopes operation.

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