The Week in Fact-Checking: That big, gaping partisan divide

An analysis of 10 U.S. partisan publications found that during the 2016 presidential election, popular conservative websites were far more likely to criticize fact-checking organizations than their liberal counterparts. Read about the report on

Quote of the week
“Because here’s the thing: fact-checking isn’t friendly. Nor should it be. Fact-checking developed to hold powerful people to account: it’s confrontational, and it’s like that because it has to be. If we want to change people’s minds, we should really take a different approach. Because no one likes being told they’re wrong.” — Rowland Manthorpe in Wired

ABC Fact Check is back
Australia’s ABC Fact Check closed one year ago due to budget cuts. This week — with the headline “Just when you thought it was safe to bend the truth” — it relaunched across all of ABC’s platforms in a partnership with RMIT University. The resuscitated site includes a “fact files” feature designed to explain issues rather than fact-check politicians’ statements. Read more here.

A crowd for fact-checking
Chequeado’s annual fundraiser drew in lots of people in support of the Argentine fact-checkers. (H/T Pablo M. Fernández.)

More fact-checking/verification guides
Three more for your collection: This one’s from the Stockholm School of Economics. This nice chart from students at Santa Clara University was part of a class project. And here’s a “yes or no” verification worksheet from Johnson & Wales University’s website.

You won’t believe this fake news fact-checking tip!
Writing for HuffPost, Caren Lissner offers an easy tip to determine whether a site is a fake-news factory or a legitimate news source: Notice how they correct their mistakes.

Did they really say that?
Storyzy has just launched a “quote-verifier tool” that checks quotes against a database of debatably reliable sources.  See the story in TechCrunch. 

In a fact-checked minute
Pagella Politica is trying out a new video format to reach and engage a wider audience. Check it out. (Disclosure: One half of the authors of this newsletter used to work for the Italian fact-checking website).

A fact sheet or a fact check?
A strongly worded AP collection of debunked falsehoods from President Trump is largely on point. One statement, however, is a good example of what not to fact-check. Trump’s quote, “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris,” is clearly a turn of phrase. Labeling it as a “fact check” by referring to voting results in Allegheny County? That’s poking the bear, not assessing the truth.

No, YOU are fake news
BuzzFeed verificationista Craig Silverman found a major sponsored content network was still offering its services to more than 20 fake news sites while launching an initiative to help readers flag fake news. The company’s response was, essentially, that Silverman’s articles aren’t so great either.

Stop laughing at fake news
A Florida newspaper columnist looks behind the fake-news headline, “Tainted Buffet at Jacksonville Strip Club Blamed After Severe Diarrhea Incident on Stage” and finds it’s not so funny. 

Fact-checking Hollywood
If you’re a “House of Cards” fan, you’ve probably already watched the first six episodes. So now it’s safe for you to read this spoiler-filled fact-check. … TV Guide writes about “Dr. Who” and the show’s fake-news story line.

The Week in Fact-Checking: Fact-checking isn't friendly; fund-raising for fact-checkers and more. Tweet This

Crowdfunding stunner
Full Fact’s crowdfunding campaign successfully raised £100,263 from 1,920 supporters plus one foundation — and Director Will Moy loves “every last bloody one” of them.

7 quick fact-checking links 
(1) Another terror attack, another round of fake news. (2) Will Twitter bots become a “fake news army?” (3) When Trump says “fake news,” most polled respondents think he means “stuff I don’t like.” (4) The Internet Archive has collected TV news clips of climate change coverage and uploaded corresponding fact-checks.  (5) From PolitFact: How the Trump presidency has changed fact-checking. (6) Vodafone wants to fight fake news.  (7)  Monica Lewinsky announces that she is “still here” despite fake news reports — oh, and she has a new book out.

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