Full Fact

Organization: Full Fact
Applicant: Joël Reland
Assessor: Sarphan Uzunoğlu
Conclusion and recommendations
on 31-May-2019 (3 months ago)

Sarphan Uzunoğlu wrote:

I think that Full Fact is a transparent and well-operating fact-checking institution.

Their web site and social network accounts are managed objectively and they are loyal to their methodology.

They are very transparent about their income model and methodology. They need to work more on making their corrections more visible on their web sites and they should let people send their claims in an easier way from their websites through a form or some module alike rather than an e-mail.

I think their request should be accepted.

on 31-May-2019 (3 months ago)

Sarphan Uzunoğlu 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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)
Full Fact is a registered charity (no. 1158683) and a non-profit company (no. 6975984) limited by guarantee and registered in England and Wales.
Files Attached
picture_as_pdf Full Fact charity re... (8 MB)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago)

The document provided proves that Full Fact is a registered charity in England and Wales. The document is official and verifiable.


done_all 1a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago)

They publish reports several times a week, sometimes more than once a day. They are really active in comparison to many other fact-checking platforms.


done_all 1b marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

Full Fact is a registered charity so we are legally required to be ‘objective, ‘balanced’, and to observe ‘strict political neutrality’. We monitor media, politicians and pressure groups across the political spectrum.

When publishing roundups (multiple claims from a TV show/debate), if we check a claim from a member of the government, we ensure that we also check one from the member of the official opposition (and vice versa). We also ensure that we do not only check claims from one person in a roundup, and aim for balance from across the debate.

Our policy is to attempt to contact the claimant about their evidence before writing.

We link to primary sources for our factual assertions.

We seek guidance from neutral external experts on particularly complex or specialist topics.

We operate a two-tier factchecker process so all articles go through two people. All factchecks and updates/corrections are reviewed by a senior researcher before publication and our director if the topic is politically sensitive.

Reviewing is restricted to experienced factcheckers. Our six week training programme covers statistics, impartiality, polling and surveys, making graphs, and good communication. Please see attached our reviewing checklist, which is not exhaustive.

Factchecks have a standardised claim and conclusion intended to guide not dictate readers’ conclusions.

Examples of our factchecking:

Claims made by the Conservative party:

Do conservative councils recycle more than Labour ones? - 16 April 2019

Prime Minister’s pension claims don’t adjust for inflation - 9 April 2019

Claims made by the Labour party:

3. Do Labour councils cost you £350 less in council tax? - 10 April 2019

4. Have 200,000 nurses quit the NHS? - 4 April 2019

Claims made by supporters of the UK remaining in the EU:

5. This image on the costs of Brexit is very misleading - 29 March

6. There almost certainly weren’t a million people on the People’s Vote march - 25 March

Claims made by supporters of the UK leaving the EU:

7. Does the public want no deal? - 10 April

8. Is the government prepared for no deal Brexit? - 9 April

Claims made by the media:

9. Front page error from the Times about how much private schools save taxpayers - May 2019

Live factchecking of political debates:

10. https://twitter.com/i/moments/1126117365790519296 (a collection of tweets from our live factchecking of Prime Minister’s Questions) - May 2019

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago)

Even if they are working on a very tense environment, considering what politics in the UK is like now, they seem to be keeping their balanced position.

Their policy to attempt to contact the claimant about their evidence before writing seems to be practised regularly.

The way thay explained their fact-checking processes in part of their report named "How we worked out the figures" is satisfactory about their non-partisan methods.


done_all 2a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

We have rigorous safeguards in place to ensure our neutrality. These have been carefully constructed based on advice from our board and examples ranging from Amnesty International to the BBC.

We have a cross-party board of trustees, which has no involvement in day-to-day editorial decisions (these are the responsibility of the Director).

We have strict operating guidelines and because of our charity status we operate within a legal framework that obliges us to be non-partisan.

Our staff handbook states that staff may not reveal publicly how they vote or express support for any political party, or express a view for or against any policy which is currently a matter of party political debate, including on social media. Actively campaigning for a party or seeking nomination as a party candidate in local or national election, or as an independent, is incompatible with working at Full Fact. All staff must complete a declaration of personal interests before they start work here.

Full Fact does not express opinions on the topics we check. From time to time we express opinions on matters that directly affect our work (such as statistics policy, our experience of using the press regulator, or freedom of information policy).

Files Attached
description Declaration of Perso... (16 KB)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their board members seem to provide diversity and nonpartisan character.

They seem to have a nonpartisan and clean publication strategy both in their website and their social network accounts.

The document they provided regarding nonpartisanship of their members is also satisfactory.


done_all 2b marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

We draw on publicly available information, such as statistics or primary research, to assess the validity of claims. For some topics, such as foreign affairs or defence, there is a lack of independent or unclassified sources, so we are unable to factcheck those claims.

We link to primary sources for all factual assertions. We prefer to link to the data tables, legal document, or relevant page of a PDF report — rather than a press release or summary of a statistical release.

We prefer to link to a specific table rather than a directory of tables, where possible (the user interface of some public information websites does not always allow for as granular a link as we would like). For example, NHS Digital gives only the option of linking directly to a downloadable spreadsheet, or to a directory of spreadsheets, some of which are not relevant to a reader seeking to follow our analysis.

We also use anchor links when linking to parliamentary records, where possible.

Please see https://fullfact.org/finder/. The finder tool empowers people to do independent research round a topic rather than just following links we provide in a factcheck. It provides a guide to the key sources of information and a brief description of some of the variables each data source would be able to provide, so readers don’t have to navigate blind.

Occasionally we seek information /advice from external experts. We will name them and their organisation (if applicable). We normally quote them for their informed judgement and where relevant provide a primary source.

Information about which sources we use is visible on our website: https://fullfact.org/about/frequently-asked-questions/

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

They draw on publicly available information and they link to web pages or reports that are relevant to their fact checks.

They are very specific in their references (instead of big charts or tables, they enable access to specific table that provides data about relevant subject).

Data sources they used in 10 different cases I examined seem to go to reliable sources.


done_all 3a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

They are surprisingly transparent about the sources of income they have. They are one of the most transparent fact-checking organizations I've seen so far. They did very well in this category.


done_all 4a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

All the staff is linked and their bios are visible in the website.

Their team page is also accessible for readers.


done_all 4b marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)
Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their contact button is visible both in desktop and mobile version.

They enabled digital and traditional ways of communication for their readers.

Very satisfactory.


done_all 4c marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

Please see our FAQs page (https://fullfact.org/about/frequently-asked-questions). Especially: 

1. "How do you factcheck?";

2. Section entitled "ABOUT FACTCHECKING";

3. "What kind of sources do you use?";

4. "Why don't you have ratings?"

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their fact-checking methodology is publicly accessible for readers, journalists and experts on their website in FAQ section.

Looking at the subtitles they provided, it is possible to get a clear understanding of their methodology.




done_all 5a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

On our contact page, we invite readers to submit claims across multiple platforms, under the heading "Got a claim for us to check?" (https://fullfact.org/about/contact). This section also explains what claims we are able to check, including a link to our FAQs page for more information on what kind of claims we can check.

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

They have a publicly visible contact page. They enable their readers to submit their story ideas/claims through social networks and e-mail. A form box might have functioned better in this case.


done 5b marked as Partially compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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.

Full Fact
22-May-2019 (3 months ago)

https://fullfact.org/about/feedback/                          

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

They have a feedback section where the way they operate feedbacks are transparent and understandable. 

They explained the feedback evaluation process fairly and clearly as well.

Section seems satisfactory for IFCN's criterions.


done_all 6a marked as Fully compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.

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

Sarphan Uzunoğlu Assessor
30-May-2019 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

They don't have a specific page on their website for corrections and it is not accessible.

The institution should have a specific part on their website for these corrections to be listed.


done 6b marked as Partially compliant by Sarphan Uzunoğlu.