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API Summit on Fact-Checking the 2016 Elections: What’s New and What’s Next

The American Press Institute will hold its second, invitation-only Thought Leader Summit on fact-checking and accountability journalism on Dec. 3 at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.

The event, “Fact-Checking the 2016 Elections: What’s New and What’s Next,” comes as news and political organizations across the U.S. are preparing for primary elections in early 2016. Discussions will focus on changes in the fact-checking landscape since the 2012 presidential elections and even the 2014 midterms.

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This type of political accountability reporting has seen tremendous growth over the past several years, according to research published earlier this year by the American Press Institute. Developments and changes in technology, audiences, platforms and impact have occurred with that growth.

During the summit, experts in the fields of journalism and politics, research and technology will gather to discuss:

  • New technologies for more efficient and accurate fact-checking
  • Building fact-checking’s exposure and accountability
  • Including audiences in fact-checking
  • Productive responses to critiques of fact-checking

Like other API summits, the fact-checking summit’s interactive format encourages all attendees to be active participants, sharing their expertise and experiences while gaining insights they can usein their own organizations. A report on important themes and top ideas will be issued after the event.

Dozens of media organization will be represented at the summit, including the Washington Post, NPR, PolitiFact, FactCheck.org, Mother Jones, McClatchy DC, The Conversation US, Sunlight Foundation, Snopes, Arizona Republic, Des Moines Register, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, WAMU, E.W. Scripps and ProPublica. Scholars from the University of Texas-Arlington, and Duke, Virginia Wesleyan, Washington and Lee, and Exeter universities also will attend.

The first fact-checking summit was held in December 2014, almost a year after the launch of API’s Fact-Checking Project. The program is funded through grants from the Democracy Fund, Rita Allen Foundation, and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. The funds support research to improve political fact-checking, assistance for news organizations in improving and increasing fact-checking practices, and contributions to public debates on the topic.

API’s Thought Leader Summits are designed to facilitate peer learning among leaders in the industry. We identify participants from organizations committed to and advancement of the summit’s topic area; and strive for a diverse group of experiences, skill sets and backgrounds, to make these events successful.  

Though space is limited, we welcome all ideas and recommendations. For more information about the fact-checking program, contact Jane Elizabeth, senior research project manager, jane.elizabeth@pressinstitute.org. You can also sign up for API’s weekly newsletter on fact-checking, truth-telling and accountability.

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