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Sept. 22, 2017, 12:24 p.m.
Reporting & Production
LINK: www.atc.gr  ➚   |   Posted by: Ricardo Bilton   |   September 22, 2017

News organizations in Germany are trying to ensure that the fake news scourge that afflicted the 2016 U.S. election doesn’t spread to the German elections taking place this Sunday.

German Press Agency dpa and public service broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk plan to stay on top of potential fake news stories this weekend using Truly Media, a platform developed by tech company Athens Technology Center in Greece and German broadcaster Deutsche Welle. (Truly Media is supported in part by the Google Digital News Initiative.)

Designed to simplify the workflow of verifying photos, videos, and social media posts, Truly Media offers reporters a single verification interface that integrates with services like reverse image search site TinEye, Google Maps (for location verification), and video verification tools. It’s also designed around collaboration, both within single newsrooms and across multiple organizations. It’s particularly focused on user-generated content coming out of Facebook and Twitter, where fake news and information are most likely to emerge and spread.

The organizations aren’t alone in their efforts to stymie the spread of fake news about Germany’s elections. Germany factchecking outfit Correctiv and First Draft have teamed up on a similar effort in the country, called #WahlCheck17. But the good news is that, by most accounts, fake news hasn’t been a big problem in Germany so far. Jacques Pezet, a factchecker at Correctiv, told Poynter last week that Germany hasn’t seen a big fake news problem thanks in part to the country’s reliance on coalition politics and the overall lack of conflict among the political parties. The fake news stories that have emerged haven’t spread very far. (CNET reached a similar conclusion in its own recent story about the non-role of fake news in Germany’s election. However: “There is one dominating topic [for misinformation in Germany], and that is everything that is related to refugees, migrants, Muslims and Islam,” Jutta Kramm, head of factchecking at Correctiv Berlin, told CNET.)

This reality has resulted in few major factchecking initiatives in the country, at least compared to the U.S., and even France, where 17 organizations partnered on First Draft’s Crosscheck project, as Poynter noted.

For our Greek-speaking readers out there, here’s an interview that Athens Technology Center gave to Greece’s Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation.

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