Overcoming closed borders: opening up fact-checking solutions
Interview with Giovanni ZAGNI (Director, Pagella Politica)
by Allan LEONARD
24 November 2020
“I haven’t seen some of my colleagues in six months,” remarked Giovanni Zagni, director of Pagella Politica, based in Milan. Conducting this interview via Zoom was a salutary reminder of unprecedented times in which we are living — never before have so many people globally have had to attempt to conduct their work, commerce, research, and collaboration remotely. Fact checkers may be more accustomed to applying their digital skills from anywhere — online access permitting — but remote camaraderie is a new phenomenon. Continue reading Overcoming closed borders: opening up fact-checking solutions
CLAIM: The PSNI are to pilot a Snapchat social media platform initiative to monitor social mitigation compliance in Northern Ireland.
CONCLUSION: INACCURATE. The PSNI have no plans to introduce any monitoring scheme on any social media platform. Complaints about social mitigation compliance can be registered on the PSNI website. Continue reading Is the PSNI rolling out a Snapchat scheme to monitor social mitigation compliance?
CLAIM: Social media posts are circulating showing supermarket shelves that have been covered over or taped off to prevent customers purchasing certain items. Reference is made to this happening in Belfast and Northern Ireland.
CONCLUSION: INACCURATE. At the time of writing, Wales is the only part of the UK that has restricted the sale of non-essential items in supermarkets. There is no indication that this model of restriction will be introduced in Northern Ireland. Continue reading Are Northern Ireland retailers covering up non-essential items from sale?
CLAIM: Wearing face masks can cause harmful levels of reduced oxygen.
CONCLUSION: INACCURATE. Face masks have no impact on oxygen levels. Continue reading Can face masks cause harmful levels of reduced oxygen?
- Three sets of figures regarding numbers of deaths attributed to COVID-19 are collated which crucially vary in their timeliness.
- We now know that COVID-19 was not the cause of death for one in 10 people who had symptoms of the virus mentioned on their death certificate.
- Conversely, 90% of people whose death certificate mentions COVID-19 were killed by it.
Continue reading The accuracy of COVID-19 death statistics
Group screening takes samples from multiple people, mixes them together, and tests them as one. People within a group that test positive are individually retested, or an algorithm is used to identify positive individuals.
Pros: Fewer tests to process; more people tested; lower cost; detection of asymptomatic cases.
Cons: It is not efficient when the infection rate is high. Continue reading What is group screening for COVID-19?