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New Fact- Checking Platform Against “Fake News” in Catalonia

The establishment of Catalonia’s first service aims to face propaganda and coercion

March 26th, 2019
Paraskevi Stringa, News from Berlin

A team of journalists based on Barcelona have taken the initiative to create a digital fact-checking service, as the fake news in Catalan politics constitutes a serious matter in the political zone. Inspired by an award-winning Mexican website, Verificat is the first “independent and not-for-profit” platform of its kind in Catalonia.

The role of this platform is to impede the spread of misinformation which has become a threat to democracy around the world.

The first three months, the project will concentrate on the Barcelona mayoral election and trial a seven-point fact-verification plan. They intend to check claims made by candidates against official or specialist statistics, as well as curb the spread of any fake news on social networks that is judged to have been designed to confuse or manipulate local voters.

Verificat is led by foreign correspondents in Latin America, who all studied journalism at the Autonomous University of Barcelona, assisted by verified data expert group Storydata. They also propose to encourage candidates to cite the sources of their assertions more clearly before ultimately classifying each statement as true, misleading, false or unverifiable.

References

Berlin Global, News from Berlin