Jan 23, 2023
Under the title “How do fact-checkers assess media outlets work?”, and with the participation of more than 120 participants via Zoom and 500 viewers on Facebook, the Arab Fact-Checkers Network (AFCN) from ARIJ on January 23, 2023, hosted three fact-checkers from 3 fact-checking initiatives from three different Arab countries: Dina Ibrahim, Director of Akhbar Meter Project from Egypt, Arwa Kooli, Editor-in-Chief of the TuniFact Platform from Tunisia and Hussein Al-Sharif, a journalist specialising in fact-checking at Maharat Foundation in Lebanon, at the first webinar of SA7 Project in 2023.
Moderated by AFCN Manager, Saja Mortada, the trainers provided in an interactive two-hour session how to monitor/evaluate the work of the media outlets, by presenting numerous case studies and examples from 3 Arab fact-checking initiatives specialising in the field. Trainers shared with the audience a number of instances and examples in which public critical thinking contributes to reducing propaganda practised by the media and the role of fact-checking organisations in correcting intentional and unintended errors made by the media.
The trainers also shared with the attendees a range of challenges faced by them, including access to information, legal challenges and conflicts of sources, as well as the agendas of the various media, which significantly affect the format and content of the news. The session was highly interactive between lecturers and the participants who asked critical questions about the relationship between the fact-checkers and media outlets mishaps.
Al-Azizi Abdelmajid, a reporter from Morocco, stated that he had benefited from the session and the expertise of the trainers, stressing the importance of knowing the methodology of fact-checking in the newsrooms.
For his part, Saber Ayari, from TuniFact platform, thanked the lecturers for dealing with different media publications and clarifying the relationship between the fact-checker and media mistakes.
The SA7 project aims to enhance the best practices, methodologies and tools for fact-checking in the Arab region, specifically in 4 countries facing political, economic and security challenges where the public confidence is declining in the media: Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine and Iraq.