Fact-check report

Course Code and Name: MSJ 4152 Investigative Journalism II

Project Name:Fact-checking report

Project Date: Spring 2023

Project Description:As the final assignment of the Investigative Journalism II course, students were given the task to prepare a fact-check report with proper formatting of mainstream media fact-check reports after finding any news or incident that went viral on Facebook or social media.

In this course, our team had to conduct a fact-check on the surrounding news of ‘Brazil’s last World Cup victory celebration bus being discovered.’ Our investigation successfully debunked the information as false. This project provided insights into the realm of, misinformation, malinformation and disinformation, offering journalism students a crucial learning experience. Understanding the nuances of verifying news sources and discerning truth from falsehood is pivotal in today’s media landscape.

Project Justification: Working on the Fact-Check Report project in the Investigative Journalism II course has strengthened my skills and understanding of verifying the mechanism of information or its source. This task, centred on debunking misinformation surrounding Brazil’s World Cup victory celebration, was essential in comprehending the complexities of misinformation, malinformation, and disinformation prevalent in social media.

It might be a very minor subject matter that we verified in the course but at large, amid this diluted digital sphere there is an infodemic going on. However, understanding the basics of scrutinising sources and validating information through this course has been helpful for me as a rookie journalist who just has started his career in the news industry. This project sharpened my ability to discern credible sources, enhancing my fact-checking and verification skills.

Moreover, it deepened my hold on the evolving media landscape emphasizing the need for ethical reporting and factual accuracy amidst the proliferation of misleading information. Now I believe that the tools and methods I learned will be useful in maintaining the trustworthiness of the audience of the media outlet I work – delivering only accurate news.

Learnings and Outcomes (Self-reflection):

  • Developed an understanding of the complexities of debunking false viral news on social media using fact-checking tools.
  • Developed skills in scrutinizing and verifying information sources.
  • Acquired skills for evaluating images and claims, distinguishing fact from fabricated content.
  • Learned using reverse image search for authenticating content sources.
  • Strengthened awareness of misinformation’s impact on social platforms.
  • Learned to craft a detailed fact-checking report for real-world application.

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