Istinomer

Organization: Istinomer
Applicant: Rasa Nedeljkov
Assessor: Ivana Jeremic

Background

Istinomer is already one of the signatories with high respect among the wider public in Serbia. It's a regional pioneer when it comes to fact-checking and has as such set standards in the region's fact-checking community. With more than 70 fact-checks per year and collaboration with mainstream media, Istinomer holds a very significant role in the fight against false information in Serbia.

Assessment Conclusion

Istinomer fulfils most of the criteria necessary to renew its status as one of the signatories. It's due to the previous application process and amends they've made in the meantime. Istinomer took all the precautionary measures to preserve its objectivity and transparency as in previous years. However, as the application process has evolved through the years, there is one amend that needs to be implemented. Istinomer should demand from its journalists and fact-checkers to ask for additional comments from the people whose claims were fact-checked and ask for clarification and sources of their claims. 

on 17-Apr-2020 (3 months ago)

Ivana Jeremic assesses application as Compliant

A short summary in native publishing language

Istinomer ispunjava kriterijume za obnavljanje statusa. Delom jer je već ranije prošao kroz proces aplikacije i tom prilikom su usvojene određene izmene. Ipak, uz nov, unapređen proces, potrebno je usvojiti još jednu izmenu i za svaki fact-check kontaktirati osobu čija se izjava proverava i zatražiti više detalja o izvoru njihovih tvrdnji.

Section 1: Eligibility to be a signatory

To be eligible to be a signatory, applicants must meet these six criteria

  • 1.1 The applicant is a legally registered organization, or a distinct team or unit within a legally registered organization, and details of this are easily found on its website.
  • 1.2 The team, unit or organization is set up exclusively for the purpose of fact-checking.
  • 1.3 The applicant has published an average of at least one fact check a week over the course of the six months prior to the date of application. For applicants from countries with at least 5 or more verified signatories need to have at least a fact check a week over the twelve months of publishing track. Consult to factchecknet@poynter.org for confirmation.
  • 1.4 On average, at least 75% of the applicant’s fact checks focus on claims related to issues that, in the view of the IFCN, relate to or could have an impact on the welfare or well-being of individuals, the general public or society.
  • 1.5 The applicant’s editorial output is not, in the view of the IFCN, controlled by the state, a political party or politician.
  • 1.6 If the organization receives funding from local or foreign state or political sources, it provides a statement on its site setting out to the satisfaction of the IFCN, how it ensures its funders do not influence the findings of its reports.

Criteria 1.1
Proof you meet criteria
Please explain where on your website you set out information about your organization’s legal status and how this complies with criteria. Attach a link to the relevant page of your website.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Istinomer was established by the non profit organization Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability, CRTA. It is registered in the Serbian Registry of Public Media [Registar javnih glasila]. All these information are clearly stated in the "About" section on the Istinomer website: 

https://www.istinomer.rs/o-istinomeru/

See the link: http://pretraga.apr.gov.rs/javnaglasila/PublicMediaBasicData.aspx?beid=3715&rnd=8FD269C0FB71CA88365D1D3A23DC6BE5DC2F516A and document confirming registration.

This registry does not keep record of the purpose of certain media, including Istinomer. However, Istinomer is officially and publicly defined as a fact-checking portal, dedicated to fact-checking and rating politicians' and public officials' claims, which is Istinomer's core business. Istinomer is also publishing fact-based analysis on Serbian politics and finance as well as interviews and video features, timelines and other forms of journalistic pieces.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer is registered in Serbian Media Registry and is widely recognized as CRTA's fact-checking outlet. 


done_all 1.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 1.2
Proof you meet criteria
Please answer the following questions – (see notes in Guidelines for Application on how to answer)

 1. When and why was your fact-checking operation started?
 2. How many people work or volunteer in the organization and what are their roles?
 3. What different activities does your organization carry out?
 4. What are the goals of your fact-checking operation over the coming year?

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Online media Istinomer (Eng. Truth-o-Meter) was launched in 2009 by its founding organization CRTA as the first fact-checking platform in the region. It was established to provide the audience with an effective fact-checking mechanism for the assessment of politicians’ and public officials’ accountability based on what they are saying and promising to their constituents and how do they actually perform. Istinomer established comprehensive, precise and transparent methodology used to evaluate politicians’ and public officials’ claims in three categories: truthfulness, consistency and fulfillment of promises. It uses uniform standards and methodology for each fact-check, relying on verifiable facts only, in order to ensure the highest level of objectivity and fairness.

For the last ten years since Istinomer is established, it applied the highest professional standards and strict methodology in fact-checking in order to ensure impartialness and objectivity and to preserve credibility. Istinomer strives to rate as many different politicians and public officials and we evaluated 73 different claims in 2019.

Istinomer disclosed many facts on accountability in the work of public officials and institutions through providing the public in Serbia with access to credible information on key political developments and issues of public importance. Istinomer also tries to provide a simple explanation for its conclusions and tend to be open to readers in cases when it is impossible to give a rating, mostly due to the lack of official data.

Besides fact-checking, Istinomer became recognized for its in-depth analyses of major developments and issues of public importance, as well as for video fact-checks, interviews and innovative visual presentations of its findings in the online and digital sphere.

Istinomer team includes 8 journalists, a project coordinator and media analyst and their biographies are published within Impressum on Istinomer website (see the link https://www.istinomer.rs/redakcija/)

This year, Istinomer's goal is to reach a broader audience and to encourage media outlets on national, local and regional level to use Istinomer’s fact-checking content as a source of information in its reporting.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer completely fulfils IFCN's criteria. In their about section readers could easily find more about Istinomer, information such as when and why it was established, but also who are the people behind the outlet. In 2020 they've set a feasible goal - to reach a broader public and cooperate with other media, a very much needed cooperation in today's world. 


done_all 1.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 1.3
Proof you meet criteria
- The applicant has published an average of at least one fact check a week over the course of the six months prior to the date of application.
- For applicants from countries with at least 5 or more verified signatories need to have at least a fact check a week over the twelve months of publishing track.
- Consult to factchecknet@poynter.org for confirmation.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Istinomer is making effort to fact-check the claims that are referring to the facts in the public interest. Therefore, focus is on public officials, since they have the opportunity to exercise power and to use public funds, so they should be accountable to the public. Besides public officials, Istinomer team also rates different opposition politicians’ statements and collects their promises, particularly during the election campaign. Political affiliations of the people Istinomer evaluates play no role in its fact checks, but verifiable facts only. During last three months, Istinomer has been reporting and fact/checking the statements on the unemployment rate, GDP growth, average salary rates, capital investments, threats to media freedoms, issues and challenges facing underrepresented groups, and other key issues of public importance.

Files Attached
insert_drive_file Published fact-check... (8 KB)
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

In the last three months, Istinomer has regularly published fact-checks, sometimes even a couple of fact-checks per week. The relevant topics they've chosen range from economy, health, media, political system etc. 


done_all 1.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 1.4
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will assess compliance through a review of the fact checks published over the previous three months. No additional information required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

In the last three months, Istinomer has published relevant fact-checks on various topics. The topics vary from week to week and reflect the current events in the country.


done_all 1.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 1.5
Proof you meet criteria
Please explain any commercial, financial and/or institutional relationship your organization has to the state, politicians or political parties in the country or countries you cover. Also explain funding or support received from foreign as well as local state or political actors over the previous financial year.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Istinomer is initiative of the nongovernmental organization Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability, CRTA, which can be seen in registration document attached bellow. Since it was established, Istinomer received funds from projects CRTA was awarded by international donors and non profit organizations interested in strengthening democracy and accountability in Serbia. In order to preserve its credibility and non-partisanship and ensure unbiased reporting CRTA does not apply for any public funds in Serbia, i.e. funds from state or local budgets.

In the "About" section (https://www.istinomer.rs/o-istinomeru), Istinomer published the list of donors for the last two years and the amount of money it was granted by each donor. In 2018, Istinomer's work was supported by the projects from the German foreign ministry (48.666 euro), Czech foreign ministry (27.550 euro), Irex ( 24. 260 USD) and Internews (19 746 USD). In 2019, Istinomer work was supported with grants from Czech foreign ministry ( 34 420 EUR) and Internews (9. 955 USD). Also, part of Istinomer’s funding was provided by the institutional grant that Rockefeller Brothers Fund granted to CRTA (9.000 USD). Funds were used for operational costs of Istinomer, video production, organization of training for journalists, conferences, panel discussions and other events.

Within "About" page the link to the CRTA's site is also provided, where all the financial audit reports of CRTA can be found - http://crta.rs/sr/ko-smo-mi/ (page bottom)

Having in mind that most of independent media outlets in Serbia, which receive funds for different projects from international donors, are regularly being labeled as traitors and mercenaries in the tabloid press and by the public officials, Istinomer's policy is to not publish the name of the donor bellow every text. This serves only to avoid any doubts in Istinomer's objectivity, as it develops the editorial policy independently, and chose the projects that want to apply for and make a pitch with its own ideas. No donor has ever requested or even suggested what articles or fact checks Istinomer should publish. On the other hand, Istinomer is transparent about the sources of funding and all the financial reports of CRTA are public, as already explained.

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf 1a 2 - Istinomer_s r... (923 KB)
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer has provided relevant and credible information about their donors. The same information is available to the public as well in the "about section" on their website. The section reveals how much money they've received in the last two years together with the donor's name. Financial reports are also available, with more details.


done_all 1.5 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 1.6
Proof you meet criteria
If you confirmed the organization receives funding from local or foreign state or political sources, provide a link to where on your website you set out how you ensure the editorial independence of your work.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

With their team being publicly exposed and their strict rules on fact-checking process and choice of topics, it seems like Istinomer has taken all precautionary measures to ensure objectivity and independence of their work no matter who their donors are. 


done_all 1.6 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Section 2: A commitment to Non-partisanship and Fairness

To be compliant on nonpartisanship and fairness, applicants must meet these five criteria

  • 2.1 The applicant fact-checks using the same high standards of evidence and judgement for equivalent claims regardless of who made the claim.
  • 2.2 The applicant does not unduly concentrate its fact-checking on any one side, considers the reach and importance of claims it selects to check and publishes a short statement on its website to set out how it selects claims to check.
  • 2.3 The applicant discloses in its fact checks relevant interests of the sources it quotes where the reader might reasonably conclude those interests could influence the accuracy of the evidence provided. It also discloses in its fact checks any commercial or other such relationships it has that a member of the public might reasonably conclude could influence the findings of the fact check.
  • 2.4 The applicant is not as an organization affiliated with nor declares or shows support for any party, any politician or political candidate, nor does it advocate for or against any policy positions on any issues save for transparency and accuracy in public debate.
  • 2.5 The applicant sets out its policy on non-partisanship for staff on its site. Save for the issues of accuracy and transparency, the applicant’s staff do not get involved in advocacy or publicise their views on policy issues the organization might fact check in such a way as might lead a reasonable member of the public to see the organization’s work as biased.

Criteria 2.1
Proof you meet criteria
Please share links to 10 fact checks published over the past year that you believe demonstrate your non-partisanship.
Please briefly explain how the fact checks selected show that (I) you use the same high standards of evidence for equivalent claims, (II) follow the same essential process for every fact check and (III) let the evidence dictate your conclusions.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

For the last ten years since Istinomer is established, it applied the highest professional standards and strict methodology in fact-checking in order to ensure impartialness and objectivity and to preserve credibility. Istinomer strives to rate as many different politicians and public officials and it evaluated 73 different claims in 2019. However, Istinomer team is also aware that more then others fact checks the claims of the current President Aleksandar Vucic, who was Prime Minister twice before his presidency. This is due to the fact that he is the most powerful person in the country and that he delivers public speeches on regular basis, presenting numerous facts that need to be examined for the sake of public interest.

Istinomer team of fact-checkers tends to use video materials to have original citations whenever possible in order to avoid misquoting and misinterpretation. When this is not possible, verbatim quotations published in different media outlets are being used. Journalists of Istinomer always contact people they rate in order to request further information about the given statement, whether it be comment or data. This way they also have the opportunity to react in case their statement was misquoted or taken out of context. 

Journalists also contact responsible institutions in a search for data and use publicly available information and databases (both local and international), as well as FOI requests to obtain certain documents, contracts, etc.

Istinomer is open and honest about the sources in our articles - it names the source for every fact, every number and note when it was obtained (if this is relevant, as some figures may change over time). 

Istinomer team analyzes reports of domestic and international institutions and think thanks, search credible databases and consult experts in different fields, university professors, NGOs. No conclusion in the fact checks could be made based on unnamed sources, as Istinomer use on-the-record sources and official documents.

Selection of the clams for the fact checks is made at the editorial meetings. Istinomer team usually chooses recent claims, important statements where there is a strong public interest and never fact check claims only to prove someone was wrong. Istinomer examines something if journalists believe there is a demand for verified facts on a certain topic.

Istinomer also has internal procedures regarding methodology that explain steps in creation of Istinomer's fact checks. These internal procedures oblige Istinomer journalists: to contact the actor for comment and/or data, to always refer to official information/research/statistical data (when possible), to contact the expert (individual or organization) for more information about the researched topic, to follow the copyright rules (especially for photos) etc.

Below you may find examples of 10 fact checks published in 2019:

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/plate-medicinskih-sestara-od-50-000-do-54-000-dinara/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/za-vreme-djilasa-studio-b-nijednom-nije-pozvao-nikoga-iz-sns-a/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/najmanje-35-istih-imena-na-spisku-podrske-protestima/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/niko-nije-promenio-vise-stranaka-od-marinike-tepic/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/ove-godine-samo-dva-mafijaska-ubistva-u-beogradu/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/moj-otac-nema-nikakve-veze-sa-firmom-gim/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/gradjani-izglasali-da-se-stari-savski-most-premesti-na-usce/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/imamo-ubedljivo-najjeftiniju-struju-u-evropi/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/prosle-godine-u-beogradu-bilo-30-kriminalnih-ubistava-2012-i-2013-po-sest/

https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/na-protestu-13-aprila-bilo-izmedju-7-400-i-7-500-ljudi/

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

In all provided articles the same criteria have been used. Unfortunately, most of the articles refer to the claims made by current public officials. It shows another problem in Serban media scene where opposition leaders do not get enough space in media. That being said it's no wonder ruling party officials occupy the attention of fact-checkers more. 


done_all 2.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 2.2
Proof you meet criteria
Please share a link to a place on your website where you explain how you select claims to check, explaining how you ensure you do not unduly concentrate your fact-checking on any one side, and how you consider the reach and importance of the claims you select to check.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer's criteria and methodology are published on their website and easily accessible to their readers. 


done_all 2.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 2.3
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will assess compliance through a review of the fact checks published over the previous year. No additional information required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Based on the review of Istinomer fact-checks I may say that they reflect the methodology published on their website. 


done_all 2.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 2.4
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will assess compliance through a review of the fact checks published over the previous year. No additional information required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

All the sources and information, quotes etc. have been cited in all the articles. The proofs vary from fact-check to fact-check, but there is always more than one source provided. 


done_all 2.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 2.5
Proof you meet criteria
Please share a link to a place on your website where you publish a statement setting out your policy on non-partisanship for staff and how it ensures the organization meets this criteria.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

https://www.istinomer.rs/o-istinomeru/

Istinomer is a member of the Press council, an independent, self-regulatory body that brings together publishers, owners of print and online media, news agencies and media professionals. As a member organization Istinomer is obliged to respect and to actively promote the Serbian Journalists' Code of Ethics. This code sets high standards for professional reporting, giving concrete guidelines necessary to ensure objectivity and fairness. One of the most important sections of the Code, section III, refers to the prevention of corruption and conflict of interest, including prevention from direct involvement of journalists in political parties and advocacy organizations:

“Work in PR and marketing agencies, lobbying agencies, public bodies and institutions, and political parties, is incompatible with the profession.

Guidelines:

• Participation in a political, electoral or a media campaign (political parties / companies, and other) cannot be performed simultaneously with journalistic / editorial work. The political activity of the family members of journalists / editors could also cause real or apparent conflict of interest.”

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

There is a strict rule for Istinomer team members when it comes to their non-partisanship policies. The rules are available to Istinomer's readers in their about section. Besides that, Istinomer is a member of the Press council.


done_all 2.5 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Section 3: A commitment to Standards and Transparency of Sources

To be compliant on sources, applicants must meet these four criteria

  • 3.1 The applicant identifies the source of all significant evidence used in their fact checks, providing relevant links where the source is available online, in such a way that users can replicate their work if they wish. In cases where identifying the source would compromise the source’s personal security, the applicant provides as much detail as compatible with the source’s safety.
  • 3.2 The applicant uses the best available primary, not secondary, sources of evidence wherever suitable primary sources are available. Where suitable primary sources are not available, the applicant explains the use of a secondary source.
  • 3.3 The applicant checks all key elements of claims against more than one named source of evidence save where the one source is the only source relevant on the topic.
  • 3.4 The applicant identifies in its fact checks the relevant interests of the sources it uses where the reader might reasonably conclude those interests could influence the accuracy of the evidence provided.

Criteria 3.1
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the applicant’s use of sources in a randomised sample of its fact checks to assess compliance. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer provides links and proofs used in their fact-checks so their readers can easily fact-check the claims by themselves too. They also publish parts of the documents used. 


done_all 3.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 3.2
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the applicant’s use of sources in a randomised sample of its fact checks to assess compliance. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their sources vary and are always cited properly.  Their credibility and relevance are usually explained in an understandable way. 


done_all 3.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 3.3
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the applicant’s use of sources in a randomised sample of its fact checks to assess compliance. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The claims and sources are cross-checked through the use of documents, other sources claimed, experts comments and publicly available information. 


done_all 3.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 3.4
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the applicant’s use of sources in a randomised sample of its fact checks to assess compliance. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The sources are named, and it's obvious what side they represent. 


done_all 3.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Section 4: A commitment to Transparency of Funding & Organization

To be compliant on funding and organization, applicants must meet these five criteria

  • 4.1 Applicants that are independent organizations have a page on their website detailing each source of funding accounting for 5% or more of total revenue for its previous financial year. This page also sets out the legal form in which the organization is registered (e.g. as a non-profit, as a company etc).
  • 4.2 Applicants that are the fact-checking section or unit of a media house or other parent organization make a statement on ownership.
  • 4.3 A statement on the applicant’s website sets out the applicant’s organizational structure and makes clear how and by whom editorial control is exercised.
  • 4.4 A page on the applicant’s website details the professional biography of all those who, according to the organizational structure and play a significant part in its editorial output.
  • 4.5 The applicant provides easy means on its website and/or via social media for users to communicate with the editorial team.

Criteria 4.1
Proof you meet criteria
Please confirm whether you are an ‘independent organization’
or ‘the fact-checking section or unit of a media house or other parent organization’ and share proof of this organizational status.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Istinomer is fact-checking initiative of the non governmental organization Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability, CRTA, which can be seen in registration document attached bellow.

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf 1a 2 - Istinomer_s r... (923 KB)
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer is an independent media outlet founded by NGO. 


done_all 4.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 4.2
Proof you meet criteria
If your organization is an “independent organization”, please share a link to the page on your website where you detail your funding and indicate the legal form in which the organization is registered (e.g. as a non-profit, as a company etc).
If your organization is “the fact-checking section or unit of a media house or other parent organization”, please share a link to the statement on your website about your ownership.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

In their about section, they explain their relationship with CRTA, the founder, and details on their funding. Together with information on their donors and money, they've linked CRTA's financial records with more detailed information. 


done_all 4.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 4.3
Proof you meet criteria
Please share a link to where on your website you set out your organizational structure, making clear how and by whom editorial control is exercised.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their team members are named, so it's easily accessible to their readers. Their methodology of picking and working on certain topics is explained within their about page. 


done_all 4.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 4.4
Proof you meet criteria
Please share a link to where on your website you set out the professional biographies of those who play a significant part in your organization’s editorial output.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Biographies of their team members are published in the Impressum. 


done_all 4.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 4.5
Proof you meet criteria
Please share a link to where on your website you encourage users to communicate with your editorial team.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The rules on leaving comments and sending proposals for fact-checks are visible to all users. 


done_all 4.5 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Section 5: A commitment to Standards and Transparency of Methodology

To be compliant on methodology, applicants must meet these six criteria

  • 5.1 The applicant publishes on its website a statement about the methodology it uses to select, research, write and publish its fact checks.
  • 5.2 The applicant selects claims to check based primarily on the reach and importance of the claims, and where possible explains the reason for choosing the claim to check.
  • 5.3 The applicant sets out in its fact checks relevant evidence that appears to support the claim as well as relevant evidence that appears to undermine it.
  • 5.4 The applicant in its fact checks assesses the merits of the evidence found using the same high standards applied to evidence on equivalent claims, regardless of who made the claim.
  • 5.5 The applicant seeks where possible to contact those who made the claim to seek supporting evidence, noting that (I) this is often not possible with online claims, (II) if the person who makes the claim fails to reply in a timely way this should not impede the fact check, (III) if a speaker adds caveats to the claim, the fact-checker should be free to continue with checking the original claim, (IV) fact-checkers may not wish to contact the person who made the claim for safety or other legitimate reasons.
  • 5.6 The applicant encourages users to send in claims to check, while making it clear what readers can legitimately expect will be fact-checked and what isn’t fact-checkable.

Criteria 5.1
Proof you meet criteria
Please provide a link to the statement on your website that explains the methodology you use to select, research, write and publish your fact checks.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

There are three main criteria Istinomer team is using for selecting statements for fact-checking and evaluation: that the statement contains verifiable fact, that it has been published in a number of different media and that is of public interest.

Istinomer readers may find the general explanation on how Istinomer works and more details on our methodology and rating system in the 'About' section. Istinomer has three categories of ratings - truthfulness (scale from true to false), consistency (scale from consistent to inconsistent) and promises (scale from promise kept to not even started). All the ratings are followed by short and simple explanation, which enable readers to understand core methodology. 

https://www.istinomer.rs/o-istinomeru/

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The criteria and methodology are explained in details in Istinomer about section.


done_all 5.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 5.2
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the methodology used in a randomised sample of your fact checks to assess compliance with these criteria. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The fact-checks I've reviewed fully reflect the criteria they claim to use. However, it's not explained within the fact-check what is the reason for checking the specific claim.


done_all 5.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 5.3
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the methodology used in a randomised sample of your fact checks to assess compliance with these criteria. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer is using various sources while explaining them to their readers. The sources vary from those supporting the claim and those undermining them. 


done_all 5.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 5.4
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the methodology used in a randomised sample of your fact checks to assess compliance with these criteria. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The same merits were applied, however, it's visible that claims made by ruling party members present the majority of fact-checked claims. 


done_all 5.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 5.5
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the methodology used in a randomised sample of your fact checks to assess compliance with these criteria. No additional evidence is required.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

By randomly choosing fact-checks to review, and not many corrections being made after publishing, it seems that the claims were chosen objectively and were quoted properly. However, I think that in accordance with the new rules IFCN has imposed,  it should become a practice to ask for additional comments people who originally made the claim.


done_all 5.5 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 5.6
Proof you meet criteria
Please describe how you encourage users to send in claims to check, while making it clear what readers can legitimately expect will be fact-checked and what isn’t fact-checkable. Include links where appropriate. If you do not allow this, explain why.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

"Proveri me!" (Fact-check Me!) extension for web browsers enables readers of the most popular and most influential Serbian news portals to easily and with just one click communicate with Istinomer journalists and to suggest specific politicians’ and public officials’ statements or potentially false information from news and media articles for the Istinomer fact-checking. (https://www.istinomer.rs/o-fektcekingu/proveri-me/)

Also, as a result of established cooperation with the Danas daily (danas.rs) and cable network, TV N1 (rs.n1info.com) Istinomer team succeed to post the "Istinomer button" on these websites and provide their readers with easy to use fact-checking function. Every page on Danas and N1 websites has a field readers can use to propose the topics and statements to Istinomer team. Although, this is a handy solution for readers, in many cases they still fail to send proper statements for fact-checking, that fit our criteria and methodology. They either don't send quotes or send quotes where people are expressing their point of view, which we do not fact check. Therefore, most demands that are in accordance with our methodology that we receive from our readers come through email or social media channels - Facebook and Twitter.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Istinomer promotes the option of submitting a fact-check proposals on their website, and through their partnership with N1 and Danas. 


done_all 5.6 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Section 6: A commitment to an Open & Honest Corrections Policy

To be compliant on corrections policy, applicants must meet these five criteria

  • 6.1 The applicant has a corrections or complaints policy that is easily visible and accessible on the organization’s website or frequently referenced in broadcasts.
  • 6.2 The policy sets out clear definitions of what it does and does not cover, how major mistakes, especially those requiring revised conclusions of a fact check, are handled, and the fact that some complaints may justify no response. This policy is adhered to scrupulously.
  • 6.3 Where credible evidence is provided that the applicant has made a mistake worthy of correction, the applicant makes a correction openly and transparently, seeking as far as possible to ensure that users of the original see the correction and the corrected version.
  • 6.4 The applicant, if an existing signatory, should either on its corrections/complaints page or on the page where it declares itself an IFCN signatory inform users that if they believe the signatory is violating the IFCN Code, they may inform the IFCN, with a link to the IFCN site.
  • 6.5 If the applicant is the fact-checking unit of a media company, it is a requirement of signatory status that the parent media company has and adheres to an open and honest corrections policy.

Criteria 6.1
Proof you meet criteria
Please provide a link to where you publish on your website your corrections or complaints policy. If you are primarily a broadcaster, please provide evidence you frequently reference your corrections policy in broadcasts.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The correction policy has been easily accessible to all the readers. 


done_all 6.1 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 6.2
Proof you meet criteria
The assessor will review the corrections policy to verify it meets critera. No additional information needed.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Their correction policy is clear and when it comes to any amends in the articles they should be visible to the public. 


done_all 6.2 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 6.3
Proof you meet criteria
Please provide a short statement about how the policy was adhered to over the previous year (or six months if this is the first application) including evidence of two examples of the responses provided by the applicant to a correction request over the previous year. Where no correction request has been made in the previous year, you must state this in your application, which will be publicly available in the assessment if your application is successful.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Istinomer has publicly admitted we may make mistake in our work, but would never miss the opportunity to correct inaccurate or imprecise article after the mistake was done. Istinomer team is also committed to respecting Serbian Journalists' Code of Ethics in order to maintain the highest professional standards, including those on correction policy. (see the link http://www.istinomer.rs/o-istinomeru) Istinomer is obliged to respect the Law on Public Information and Media, which envisaged procedures for corrections in detail, which it fully respects.

Istinomer is transparent about all the changes after the text was published and therefore it always adds a note at the end of the text explaining what was amended - whether it was false information or additional data was inserted for some reason.

For example, in the evaluation of the claim gave by the finance minister Sinisa Mali, Istinomer team added a detailed explanation of changes that were done within the article. Link to the fact-check - https://www.istinomer.rs/izjava/trecu-godinu-zaredom-imamo-suficit-javni-dug-je-506-odsto/


Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The amends are visible to the public, they include a date and the reason for changes, together with a detailed explanation of how the mistake was made and how it was corrected. 


done_all 6.3 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 6.4
Proof you meet criteria
If you are an existing signatory, please provide a link to show where on your site you inform users that if they believe you are violating the IFCN Code, they may inform the IFCN of this, with a link to the complaints page on the IFCN site.

Istinomer
01-Apr-2020 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Within Istinomer's about section, readers are informed that the outlet is an IFCN signatory and how they can complain in case they think the outlet is a violating the IFCN code.


done_all 6.4 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.

Criteria 6.5
Proof you meet criteria
If you are the fact-checking unit of a media company, please provide a link to the parent media company’s honest and open corrections policy and provide evidence that it adheres to this.

Ivana Jeremic Assessor
12-Apr-2020 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

n/a


done_all 6.5 marked as Compliant by Ivana Jeremic.