Check Your Fact

Organization: Check Your Fact
Applicant: Aislinn Murphy
Assessor: Margot Susca
Conclusion and recommendations
on 21-Feb-2020 (3 months ago)

Margot Susca wrote:

The site is clear on its organization, ownership, methodology and it clearly states it will fact check claims from both sides of the aisle, and it does. 

I note two areas for review: 

First, it may wish to make a better cycle between its staff bylines and staff bios. If you click on a staffer's byline, it would be helpful to be linked back to that writer/fact checker's bio. More information is provided in the notes under that section. 

Second, as for corrections, there is not a public page or sidebar for corrections, in part, because the applicant said it has not had to issue a correction in the last year. I would recommend a public-facing corrections page, where a web user could find information about clarifications (where an UPDATE has been issued on this site) and corrections, once they are needed. 

on 21-Feb-2020 (3 months ago)

Margot Susca recommended Accept


Section 1: Organization

Criterion 1a
Proof of registration
Evidence required: Please provide evidence that the signatory is a legally-registered organization set up exclusively for the purpose of fact-checking or the distinct fact-checking project of a recognized media house or research institution.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

Check Your Fact (CYF) is a dedicated fact-checking site operated by the newsroom of Washington, DC-based The Daily Caller, as explained prominently on the site's 'About Us' page. CYF's website is registered to The Daily Caller (TDC). As supporting documents CYF shared a 'Certificate of Status' for TDC's corporate registration in Delaware, first incorporated in 2009, as well as its own privacy policy and terms of service, both of which identify it as a project of TDC. 

http://checkyourfact.com/

http://checkyourfact.com/privacy-policy

http://checkyourfact.com/terms-of-service 

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf THE DAILY CALLER, IN... (78 KB)
Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 1b
Archive
Evidence required: Insert a link to the archive of fact checks published in the previous three months. If you do not collect all fact checks in one place, please explain how the fact-checking is conducted by your organization.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

From October to December, approximately 160 articles were published on Check Your Fact

You can view all of our fact checks on our website: http://checkyourfact.com/

They are also housed on The Daily Caller website: http://dailycaller.com/  

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1b marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Section 2: Nonpartisanship and Fairness

Criterion 2a
Body of work sample
Evidence required: Please share links to ten fact checks that better represent the scope and consistency of your fact-checking. Provide a short explanation of how your organization strives to maintain coherent standards across fact checks.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

Check Your Fact pursues a non-partisan mission of fact-checking public figures on both sides of the political spectrum. To ensure this, our writers have built out social media feeds on Tweetdeck (Twitter) and CrowdTangle (Facebook) that track the statements made by both conservatives and liberals.

Scanning sources across the political spectrum allows us to keep our claim selection neutral.

We have one feed that tracks what Republican members of Congress are tweeting and another that follows the tweets of Democratic members; one that tracks conservative advocacy groups and another that follows liberal ones; etc. On Facebook, we have separate feeds for right-wing and left-wing pages.

We avoid fact-checking opinions or claims with ambiguous wording, and generally focus on claims that follow the news cycle, have been shared widely on social media, or have been made by prominent public figures.

Once a claim is chosen, we ensure that every article is balanced. Check Your Fact has a dedicated editor who scrutinizes each article for fairness, ensuring that opposing viewpoints and all relevant context are represented.

We often reach out to experts to make sure our research is thorough and fair, and as a matter of course, we always contact the person who made the claim if the verdict appears to be false or unsubstantiated.

More information on our process can be found here:

http://checkyourfact.com/methodology

FACT CHECK: 5 CLAIMS FROM TRUMP’S CLIMATE CHANGE TWEETS 

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/09/06/fact-check-donald-trump-climate-change-cnn-town-hall-tweets/

FACT CHECK: 3 CLAIMS FROM THE 7TH DEMOCRATIC PRIMARY DEBATE

https://checkyourfact.com/2020/01/15/fact-check-three-claims-seventh-democratic-debate-elections-north-korea-childcare-warren-biden-sanders/

FACT CHECK: IS MACKENZIE BEZOS THE RICHEST WOMAN IN THE WORLD?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/12/24/fact-check-mackenzie-bezos-richest-woman-forbes-bloomberg-billionaires/

FACT CHECK: VIDEO CLAIMS TO SHOW JOE BIDEN MAKING A RACIST REMARK

https://checkyourfact.com/2020/01/03/fact-check-video-joe-biden-racist-remark/

FACT CHECK: IS FINLAND INTRODUCING 4-DAY WORK WEEKS AND 6-HOUR WORK DAYS?

https://checkyourfact.com/2020/01/09/fact-check-sun-finland-four-day-six-hour-work-week-finland/

FACT CHECK: DO THESE IMAGES SHOW THE UKRAINE WHISTLEBLOWER POSING WITH DEMOCRATS?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/11/29/fact-check-ukraine-whistleblower-alex-soros-pelosi-schumer-clinton-warren/

FACT CHECK: DOES CHINA PRODUCE 90% OF GLOBAL CARBON EMISSIONS?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/12/18/fact-check-china-global-carbon-emissions-90-percent/

FACT CHECK: WAS TRUMP GOLFING DURING THE AL-BAGHDADI RAID?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/11/01/fact-check-donald-trump-baghdadi-golf-palmer-report/

FACT CHECK: DOES BETO O’ROURKE HAVE A CRIMINAL RECORD THAT PREVENTS HIM FROM BUYING GUNS?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/09/24/fact-check-beto-orourke-criminal-record-gun/

FACT CHECK: DO ONLY 25% OF AMERICANS SUPPORT IMPEACHMENT, AS TRUMP CLAIMS?

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/10/16/fact-check-president-donald-trump-poll-25-percent-support-impeachment/ 

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Compliant. 


done_all 2a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 2b
Nonpartisanship policy
Evidence required: Please share evidence of your policy preventing staff from direct involvement in political parties and advocacy organizations. Please also indicate the policy your organization has as a whole regarding advocacy and supporting political candidates.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

As a news outlet, we mandate that our employees do not advocate for individual politicians or candidates. Doing so would violate our journalistic code of ethics and make reporting the news in a non-biased way impossible.

More information on our nonpartisanship and fairness can be found here:

https://checkyourfact.com/about-us

https://checkyourfact.com/fairness

Our writer’s agreement specifically addresses this point:

"Political Activities -- Writer agrees not to partake in any partisan political activity or other issue advocacy during the term of this Agreement. Writer understands that any such political activity or advocacy could cause others to question their independence as a reporter."

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf Writing & Video Agre... (307 KB)
Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Website states: "Our mission is a non-partisan one. We're loyal to neither people nor parties -- only the truth. And while the fact-checking industry continues to grow, there are still countless assertions that go unchecked. We exist to fill in the gaps."


done_all 2b marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Section 3: Transparency of Sources

Criterion 3a
Sources Policy
Please share a brief and public explanation (500 words max) of how sources are provided in enough detail that readers could replicate the fact check. If you have a public policy on how you find and use sources for your fact-checking, it should be shared here.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

Each fact check is heavily dependent on reputable, primary sources.

Source material is hyperlinked extensively within the body of the article, and where a link is not available, the article tells readers where the information came from and the qualifications of the institution or individual who provided the content.

Check Your Fact also uses graphs and charts to clearly illustrate the verdict. The data is not only sourced within the graph, but also in the text of the fact check.

To help the reader understand the verdict, we put the most relevant information at the top – we summarize the gist of the article before delving into the details, and then try to establish the claim as early as possible.

For clarity, our lede sentence always states the claim that we have decided to fact check, followed by the verdict shortly thereafter.

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Compliant. In one fact check I reviewed about the 9th Democratic debate, the fact check site used information from the New York Civil Liberties Union, and it created a chart to fact check a candidate's claim. 


done_all 3a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Section 4: Transparency of Funding & Organization

Criterion 4a
Funding Sources
Evidence required: Please link to the section where you publicly list your sources of funding (including, if they exist, any rules around which types of funding you do or don't accept), or a statement on ownership if you are the branch of an established media organization or research institution.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

https://checkyourfact.com/about-us 

Check Your Fact is a for-profit subsidiary wholly owned by The Daily Caller, Inc. Majority owners of The Daily Caller, Inc. are co-founder and publisher Neil Patel and co-founder Tucker Carlson.

The Daily Caller’s fact-checking team is funded by The Daily Caller’s general news budget, as well as revenue generated through advertising. Expenditures for Check Your Fact include employee salaries and website maintenance.

Decisions about what to investigate, as well as our conclusions, are guided only by our journalists. Check Your Fact exercises editorial independence over the creation of fact check content.

The Daily Caller has a licensing agreement with The Daily Caller News Foundation, a Delaware 501(c)(3) non-profit news organization. TheDCNF is a separate legal entity from The Daily Caller (The latest Form 990 can be found here.).

All content created by TheDCNF is available in full, free of charge to any reputable publisher that can provide a large audience. TheDCNF currently has over 250 publishers signed onto its free license to run its content on their sites.

The Daily Caller is one of these 250 licensees and does run content created by TheDCNF. The Daily Caller gets this content on the same terms as all other licensees with no special preference.

TheDCNF receives funding from individual donations and grants from non-profit foundations. DCNF contributors to Check Your Fact are supported by a $100,000 grant from the Searle Freedom Trust for investigative reporting.

The following statement can be found on TheDCNF website: "Editorial independence is central to TheDCNF’s mission of providing honest, balanced and ethical journalism. TheDCNF does not participate in or accept any support for lobbying activities. It does not accept any government funding or funds earmarked for advocacy. All editorial decisions are made exclusively by editors, with no direction from donors. A donation does not provide for any specific reporting, editorial review, or preview of unpublished stories."

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf 2018 Public Copy Exe... (3 MB)
Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Its website clearly states: "Check Your Fact is a for-profit subsidiary wholly owned by The Daily Caller, Inc. Majority owners of The Daily Caller, Inc. are co-founder and publisher Neil Patel and co-founder Tucker Carlson.

The Daily Caller’s fact-checking team is funded by The Daily Caller’s general news budget, as well as revenue generated through advertising. Expenditures for Check Your Fact include employee salaries and website maintenance."


done_all 4a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 4b
Staff
Evidence required: Please link to the section detailing all authors and key actors behind your fact-checking project with their biographies. You can also list the name and bios of the members of the editorial board, pool of experts, advisory board, etc. if your organization has those.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

https://checkyourfact.com/staff 

Check Your Fact is managed by Geoff Ingersoll, The Daily Caller's editor-in-chief.

The Daily Caller employs a dedicated fact check editor, Aislinn Murphy, as well as reporters Trevor Schakohl and Elias Atienza.

Check Your Fact also has one frequent contributor who is employed by The Daily Caller News Foundation: Brad Sylvester.

Fact checks may be performed by The Daily Caller staff and other freelance journalists who are thoroughly vetted by The Daily Caller's editorial team.

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Staff ad bios are listed on the site. 

I think it could increase transparency to have a link to each author's work from their byline; ie. a user could click on the byline and be taken to their full bio. I have included a screen shot of one of the fact checks on the site; were I to click on the name there of the fact checker (as an example Elias Atienza, it does not give me any information about him/them). 

That part of the site does allow a user to link to staffers' Twitter pages; I found that useful and shows complementary work on social media. I included a second screen shot for review. 

I have electronically circled that byline in purple to show. That may be helpful though I offer it as a suggestion, I do not believe it makes the organization non- or even partially-compliant. 

Files Attached
Screen Shot 2020-02-... (227 KB)
done_all 4b marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 4c
Contact
Evidence required: Please link to the section where readers can get in touch with the organization.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

http://checkyourfact.com/contact

We also encourage our readers to contact us on our methodology page, as well as at the bottom of each article.

http://checkyourfact.com/methodology  

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

I sent email at 2:45 p.m. Feb. 10 checking in on reception to the publicly-facing email. I received a response  one minute later. 


done_all 4c marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Section 5: Transparency of Methodology

Criterion 5a
Detailed Methodology
Evidence required: Please link to a section or article detailing the steps you follow for your fact-checking work.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)
Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

States how and why it chooses to fact check what it does, and the site clearly explains the process and methods by which they seek to address a claim and then tag it as false or true. 


done_all 5a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 5b
Claim submissions
Evidence required: Please link to the page or process through which readers can submit claims to fact-check. If you do not allow this, please briefly explain why.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

http://checkyourfact.com/contact

http://checkyourfact.com/methodology

We encourage our readers to send us feedback, including recommendations on future fact-checks.

You may contact one of our reporters, or send an email to the fact-check editor, Aislinn Murphy: aislinn@dailycaller.com.

What makes a good fact check? We avoid fact-checking opinions or claims that are overly broad. For example, “Assault rifles are used in most school shootings” can be readily fact-checked, whereas “Banning assault weapons would stop school shootings” is something we leave the public to debate.  

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Compliant. 


done_all 5b marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Section 6: Open & Honest Corrections Policy

Criterion 6a
Corrections policy
Evidence required: Please link to the page with your policy to address corrections. If it is not public, please share your organization's handbook.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

http://checkyourfact.com/corrections

While our job is to ascertain the truth, we will occasionally make mistakes. When we do, we commit to hastily correcting our errors so that our readers can get the real story. If you spot an error, please alert us via our tip line.

The prominence of our correction will be commensurate to the gravity of the error. Typos will be corrected without fanfare, minor corrections will be noted at the bottom of the article and major factual corrections will be noted at the top. 

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Readers can submit emails to a "tip line" to alert about corrections. 


done_all 6a marked as Fully compliant by Margot Susca.

Criterion 6b
Examples of corrections
Evidence required: Please provide two examples of a correction made, or correction requests handled, in the past year.

Check Your Fact
24-Jan-2020 (4 months ago)

Check Your Fact has not had to issue a correction over the last year.

We updated a fact check we published about an interaction between a BART transit officer and a commuter to include a comment from a legal expert of our own volition.

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/11/12/fact-check-bart-transit-police-arrest-man-sandwich/ 

"UPDATE (11/13/19): A comment from criminal defense attorney Rabin Nabizadeh of Summit Defense has been added to the article."

“In this case, the officer observed an infraction and proceeded to attempt to issue a citation,” said Rabin Nabizadeh, an attorney at the California-based Summit Defense law firm, in an email to the DCNF. “Once the individual refused to provide his identification, the officer was within his rights to detain the individual and even formally arrest him for a violation of the far more serious Misdemeanor.”

The update did not necessitate in a change in verdict.

We also updated a fact check we published on former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) supervisor Thomas Kilbride.

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/01/17/fact-check-thousands-killed-illegal-immigrants-2003/

Kilbride claimed: “thousands” of civilians have been killed by illegal immigrants since 2003.

The article was rated unsubstantiated because immigration experts told us that it is very likely that illegal immigrants have killed thousands but statistics on murders by illegal immigrants are limited. Government data suggests that thousands of illegal immigrants have been convicted of homicide over the span of decades. (An ‘unsubstantiated’ verdict is used when there is conflicting data, experts disagree on a matter, etc.)

Cato Institute’s Alex Nowrasteh (a source used in the article) reached out to Check Your Fact after publication to clarify his previous comments. We added an editor's note to inform readers add his clarification and add information from a 2011 government report on homicide convictions.

"EDITOR’S NOTE: After publication of this article, the Cato Institute’s Alex Nowrasteh clarified that while he was skeptical that thousands of American citizens have been killed by illegal immigrants since 2003, he thought that it is very likely that thousands of civilians – including other illegal immigrants – have been killed. We also added information from a 2011 government report on homicide convictions of illegal aliens in custody during fiscal year 2008."

The update did not necessitate a change in verdict.

Margot Susca Assessor
10-Feb-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

I list as partially compliant because the site has not had to issue a correction in the last year, though it noted two times in 2019 it had to provide web UPDATEs, which read like clarifications. If IFCN wishes for sites to have a public repository of fact check corrections issued, it may wish to specify this as an issue for this applicant. I did not see one page for corrections. 


done 6b marked as Partially compliant by Margot Susca.