An open letter to YouTube’s CEO from the world’s fact checkers

An open letter to YouTube’s CEO from the world’s fact checkers
12 January 2022

Ms Susan Wojcicki,

It’s been almost two years since the COVID-19 pandemic started. The world has seen time and time again how destructive disinformation and misinformation can be for social harmony, democracy, and public health; too many lives and livelihoods have been ruined, and far too many people have lost loved ones to disinformation. As an international network of fact-checking organizations, we monitor how lies spread online — and everyday, we see that YouTube is one of the major conduits of online disinformation and misinformation worldwide. This is a significant concern among our global fact-checking community. Continue reading An open letter to YouTube’s CEO from the world’s fact checkers

How-to: Reverse image search

Take a brief moment to check viral images online before you share them. This can help stop the spread of misinformation/disinformation. There are many online search engines and tools which will point to the origins of images you see on social media channels and elsewhere on the web. As fact checkers these are often our “go to” tools when considering an image. 

Images are a quick, easy, and shareable way to communicate a message online. At FactCheckNI we often see them  reappear some time later because of a renewed interest in the topic that the image is associated with. We also see them used out of context (e.g. a different time and/or place) in misleading ways.

Here’s a worked example of how we checked an image that was widely shared.  Continue reading How-to: Reverse image search

Empowered citizens should Think Check Share

Empowered citizens should Think Check Share
28 June 2021

One of FactCheckNI’s aims is to promote a culture of factual accountability amongst citizens, with an attitude of critical thinking and active verification. This applies to what we all see on social media platforms as well as what we read in newspapers, hear on broadcast media or pick up from everyday conversations. Continue reading Empowered citizens should Think Check Share

Online rumours and misinformation in Northern Ireland

Online rumours and misinformation in Northern Ireland
by Dr Orna YOUNG
13 May 2021

Recent events in Northern Ireland have resulted in a renewed focus on the role of online rumours and false information in increasing inter-communal tensions and violence, particularly in interface areas of Belfast and specific areas of L~Derry. In Northern Ireland, where political, social and economic debate is often delineated along lines of perceived communal affiliation, false information and rumours have the potential to increase communal division and alienate communities from political processes and debates. Continue reading Online rumours and misinformation in Northern Ireland

Disinformation in a pandemic: sharing fact checkers’ experiences

Disinformation in a pandemic: sharing fact checkers’ experiences
23 March 2021

As part of the Imagine! Belfast Festival of Ideas and Politics, editors from three fact-checking organisations across these isles shared their experiences of work during the pandemic — Claire Milne (Full Fact), Christine Bohan (TheJournal.ie), and Allan Leonard (FactCheckNI). The event was hosted by Ciaran Hanna from InsideIreland.ie. Continue reading Disinformation in a pandemic: sharing fact checkers’ experiences

COVID-19 conspiracy theories: how to have ‘the talk’ 

COVID-19 conspiracy theories: how to have ‘the talk’
by Dr Orna YOUNG
11 December 2020

Any discussion of COVID-19 and the development and introduction of vaccines to combat it invariably gives rise to talk about conspiracy theories. “Is it part of a global ‘plandemic?’ Are the vaccines being introduced to track us?” We have all seen these types of comments and discussions taking place online. Continue reading COVID-19 conspiracy theories: how to have ‘the talk’