The Week in Fact-Checking: Welcome the Potted-Plant-o-Meter
In the sea of commentary over who won the U.S. presidential debate on Monday, it’s almost hard to remember that one question dominated pre-debate commentary: Will the moderator fact-check the candidates? The debates chief said he probably shouldn’t; a majority of Americans thought he should. And you can guess where we stood on the matter. In the end how did Holt do? We rated him from a fact-checker’s perspective.
Quote of the week
“So has fact-checking failed? Has American politics at last reached its final destination — a desolate, dusty, God-forsaken, Cormac-McCarthian, “post-fact” landscape? We dug into the research, and we have an answer: No. However…” — Read the rest from Danielle Kurtzleben at NPR.
Finally, fact-checking is the new black
It’s been seven years since PolitiFact won the Pulitzer Prize. Thirteen years since FactCheck.org launched. The Washington Post’s Fact Checker published its first fact-check in 2007. Has the 2016 election finally made fact-checking a household word? We’re fact-checking that too.
Upholding standards among fact-checkers
The IFCN code of principles was announced two weeks ago and has already picked up several new signatories. Meanwhile, existing signatories are starting to publish on their own sites how they intend to respect it. Check out explanations by Africa Check, Full Fact andTheJournal.ie and also The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom.
Fact-checking means showing your work
When Georgia television station WRDW-12 tackled a fact-check of competing advertisements for a controversial school district proposal, they did just what your 4th-grade math teacher always told you to do: Show your work.
Jeremy Corbyn’s conference speech, fact-checked
Full Fact checked the Labour party leader’s conference speech on Twitter, and made a Moment out of it.
African Fact-Checking Award finalists unveiled
Africa Check received 130 entries from more than 20 countries across the continent for its annual fact-checking award. Finalists include a report scrutinizing a wannabe coach’s CV and a piece-by-piece factual rebuttal of a speech by the Kenyan President. The winners will be announced Nov. 10.
Patterns of deception
FlackCheck.org looked at how the two main presidential candidates in the U.S. distort the facts. Hillary Clinton misleads and withholds part of the story; Donald Trump relies heavily on hearsay. You can find all of FlackCheck’s videos on YouTube.
Garry Trudeau, not a stranger to drawing fact-related comic strips, dedicated last week’s to The Washington Post’s “Pinocchios.” Also fun: the Post’s Fact Checker Glenn Kessler interviewed on “The Daily Show.” Check it out.
You read it here first, but…
The latest Nyhan/Reifler working paper on the effect of fact-checking gets reviewed by New York Magazine, too.
Quick fact-checking links
(1) Chequeado is crowdfunding, and also translated PolitiFact’s debate fact-checking into Spanish. (2) Fact-checking doesn’t matter in elections; gender does. (3) Full Fact is hiring. (4) Do fact-checkers have an agenda? Yep. (5) Italian fact-checkers Pagella Politica are back on TV with a segment on a new RAI show. (6) There was a lot of fact-checking on Monday night, but it should have started with a check of “Donald, it’s good to be with you,”says Stephen Colbert.