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Fact-checking coalition CrossCheck

non-profit First Draft News.

Publisher partners are mainly from France and Britain, and include the BBC, Channel 4 News, International Business Times, Bloomberg, Le Monde, BuzzFeed, La Liberation, Les Echos and Agence France-Presse.

Having more than one publisher discredit a false story renders the debunking more powerful.

Le Monde’s fact-checking team, Les Décodeurs.

All newsrooms communicate via Slack, but they use a separate, shared content-management system for flagging actual stories and social media posts that are dubiously sourced and require investigating. Currently around 60 journalists are actively using the CMS. First Draft News is expecting that number to grow to 150 in total, as more journalists are granted access.

The project was launched ahead of the first round of French elections, which kick off April 23, so all the stories flagged to date have been elections-related. But many of the French publishers hope the system will survive beyond the elections and become a permanent tool for newsrooms to throttle the spread of misinformation.

Stories are given either a “true” or “false” stamp. Some get a “caution” icon, which means a story is misleading even though it has some true elements to it, and First Draft News is currently working on a fourth category, called “attention,” and will provide additional context to stories that aren’t outright false but aren’t giving the full picture. A report is written, typically by journalists from one of the publishers that investigated the story, and can be embedded across social platforms and on publisher sites.

BBC News published a summary, “Fake News: Five French election stories debunked,”

First Draft News has assigned 12 bilingual project editors to assist with things like translation. Nine of those 12 people are interns who have journalism or communications degrees.

An intern now sits within a dozen of the newsrooms, including those of the BBC, Channel 4 News, International Business Times, Agence France-Presse and La Liberation. Some newsrooms have assigned their own project editors.
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