Citizen-generated Fact-checking Platforms: Outgrowing failing Media Infrastructures
Speaker: Tomás Dodds
Moderator: Christian Christensen
December 10th, 2020, 18:00-18:35 CET
Written by Olha Kotielnikova
Keywords: Media, Fact-Checking, Protests, Chile
Short annotation, summary
When the Chilean protests started, citizens had to oppose the violence from the side of the government. State repressions unfolded towards citizens and consequently produced a grasp of political support and solidarity. Trying to be active, Chileans were faced with a problem of identifying and combating disinformation coming from both bots and the top of the national government.
The project or approach to be discussed in the session
Chile-Registra created a database, firstly, to store the photos and videos of the protests including military and police abuses and secondly, to identify the creators of these visuals.
Fast-check initiative based on Instagram relied on volunteers to check the information about the protests.
Evidence of impact
After 4 days of the protest (very quickly), the Chile-Registra started gathering the data.
Fact-check gained over 100,000 followers during the first active month.
People ended up enjoying simple bullet points performed by Fact-check volunteers rather than long-reads by professional journalists.
Limitations, risks of the approach provided by the speaker
Since human rights violations arose from social media platforms, not everything could be published immediately but Chile-Registra stored the information for the future.
Monopolised journalism has little trust in voluntary media-projects like the Chile-Registra.
In Fact-check, the capacity of professionalism is limited since it is based on volunteer support.
1. Fact-check and Chile-Registra identify the shortcomings of journalism and try to assist it.
2. The initiatives are not only pseudo-journalistic projects but they function as transparency devices.
3. They are calling citizens to participate, to be sources, producers and fact-checkers and proving citizens can organise themselves in a fight against the government.