Why does fact checking matter? @ImagineBelfast

Why does fact checking matter? @ImagineBelfast
by FactCheckNI
28 March 2019

As part of the Imagine! Festival of Ideas and Politics, FactCheckNI hosted a lunchtime seminar on the importance of fact checking, not only for facts’ sake but including perspectives from data science, journalism, and academic research. The proposition was that facts are a crucial but not exclusive source of information, and that by appreciating the interplay of facts, opinion, and power, we may have a better understanding of how human nature is responding to the dynamic of social media, for better and worse. Continue reading Why does fact checking matter? @ImagineBelfast

Does no one in Mid Ulster speak Irish?

CLAIM: No one in Mid Ulster speaks Irish as their first language.

CONCLUSION: Inaccurate. 440 people living in the local government district spoke Irish as their first language, according to the 2011 Census. 22,986 people have some knowledge of the Irish language in this jurisdiction. Continue reading Does no one in Mid Ulster speak Irish?

Digital verification for human rights: Amnesty International @ImagineBelfast

Digital verification for human rights: Amnesty International @ImagineBelfast
by Ferre WOUTERS for FactCheckNI
25 March 2019

At the first day of Belfast’s Imagine Festival 2019, Amnesty International held two events, both presented by Milena Marin, who leads Amnesty International’s Digital Decoders platform. It started off with a talk explaining how Amnesty is using technology to expose human rights violations, followed by a workshop where participants were acquainted with more detailed methods and tools that Amnesty uses for digital verification. Continue reading Digital verification for human rights: Amnesty International @ImagineBelfast

FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage

FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage
PRESS STATEMENT by FactCheckNI
19 March 2019

Hoaxes know no borders, especially in Europe. That’s why FactCheckNI is proud to announce the launch of FactCheckEU, a collaborative effort from 19 European fact-checking outlets to tackle disinformation and hoaxes, ahead of the 2019 European parliamentary elections in May. FactCheckNI will contribute relevant material, such as the UK’s departure from the EU. Continue reading FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage

As many appointments cancelled by hospital as patient no-shows?

CLAIM: Almost as many health appointments were cancelled by hospitals as were the result of patients not turning up.

CONCLUSION: Accurate with consideration. In 2017/18, hospitals cancelled more appointments (175,428) than patients not showing up (139,351). However, in the same period, patients cancelled notably more appointments (207,960) than hospitals did. Hospitals account for 34% and patients 66% of all appointments scheduled but not held. Continue reading As many appointments cancelled by hospital as patient no-shows?

Communal counting: The Northern Ireland census

Communal counting: The Northern Ireland census
by Ferre WOUTERS for FactCheckNI
6 March 2019

In Northern Ireland, much data are reduced to communal categories of “Protestant” and “Catholic”, for the purposes of monitoring the delivery of public services and compliance with discrimination legislation. These two religious denominations are also used as proxy for British unionist and Irish nationalist identities. For some, a Protestant-majority population provides assurance of continuation of the Union with Great Britain; for others, a Catholic-majority population means a call for a referendum for a united Ireland. Thus the decennial exercise of the Northern Ireland population census has an added sensitivity and importance. Continue reading Communal counting: The Northern Ireland census