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The Week in Fact-Checking: All grown up and ‘no longer a fresh-faced movement’

ROME, Italy – This week, at the fifth annual Global Fact-Checking Summit, 200 fact-checkers gathered to share best practices, demo innovative technology and discuss problems that misinformation poses to the media industry.

The conference was held at St. Stephen’s School in Rome.

In conjunction with the conference, the International Fact-Checking Network published a report that takes a look behind the curtain of several different fact-checking projects. Check out the sessions at here, tweets from the conference at #GlobalFactV and some highlights in this Poynter story.

More from Global Fact V

Jane Elizabeth, director of the American Press Institute’s accountability journalism program, discusses tips for reaching resistant audiences.

  • The IFCN tried to create a deepfake video of Mark Zuckerberg and Alex Jones — and failed. Here’s why.

Alexios Mantzarlis, director of the International Fact-Checking Network, gives opening remarks.

Research you can use

  • What makes people distrust science? It has nothing to do with politics, says a University of Amsterdam researcher.
  • A team of researchers set up a fake Facebook account to find out how we “fall for fake news.”
  • Two Indiana University researchers say that three types of biases that “make the social media ecosystem vulnerable” to misinformation.

This is how we do it

  • What can all journalists learn from their local weather forecast? How to clearly explain data and faithfully battle misinformation of social media platforms.
  • Advertisers are key but sometimes overlooked soldiers in the fight against fakery. Artificial intelligence can help warn those who “are looking to advertise on credible sites.”
  • KDVR-TV in Colorado calls their fact-checking “problem-solving” and has published “The Problem-Solvers Voting Guide” for the upcoming election.

This is bad

  • President Trump encourages Washington Post staffers to go on strike so that “fake news” will decline.
  • The Fresno Bee finds itself in the position of having to do a fact check on the Fresno Bee.
  • German media outlets fell for fake news published by a satirical magazine.

This is fun

  • “The most anticipated literary event of our time” — a “totally fake” and satirical book on the Mueller investigation — is coming soon. Read about ithere.
  • A Washington Post food columnist fact-checks the movie “Eating Animals”and tells us what the script gets wrong.
  • Now this is important: A fact check of Kenyatta’s shirt.

A closer look

  • Here’s an interesting exercise: Compare the research quality and factual resonance of two fact checks on the separation of children from their immigrant parents. FactCheck.org’s Q&A that cites agency data and eyewitnesses;  The Blaze’s “fact check” that cites conservative commentator Ben Shapiro.
  • Facebook and YouTube are now using Wikipedia in their efforts to combat misinformation. But could that backfire?
  • How should you handle lies from President Trump in a headline?

If you read one more thing

Journalism, just by being journalism, is scarily helping to spread lies by politicians, says Greg Sargent in The Washington Post.

11 quick fact-checking links

  1. It appears that CNN’s Brian Stelter has officially coined the term “truth sandwich.”
  2. Using your site’s “About” page wisely can help readers learn about your mission and set you apart from “opaque” organizations.
  3. Here’s an interview with Briony Swire-Thompson, a postdoctoral researcher at Northeastern University and her fight against misinformation.
  4. IJNET takes a look at ZimFact, Zimbabwe’s first first-checking project.
  5. WhatsApp’s misinformation problem continues to build.
  6. Google News Initiative says it will train 8,000 Indian journalists in fact-checking.
  7. The new owner of the Los Angeles Times, who also is a doctor, says “fake news is the cancer of our times” and promises to continue to fight it.
  8. The Pew Research Center found that Americans are pretty bad at telling news form opinion.
  9. The Trump administration tripled down on a four-Pinocchio falsehood that The Washington Post Fact Checker debunked.
  10. Turns out that people worry about fake news more than they’ve actually seen it.
  11. Gallup and the Knight Foundation found that Americans believe about two-thirds of news on social media is misinformation.

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