Maharat Foundation

Organization: Maharat Foundation
Applicant: Roula Mikhael
Assessor: Naglaa Elemary

Background

Maharat is a NGO working in Lebanon. Its activities include training for journalists, advocating freedom of expression and independent journalism which is important in Lebanon, a highly polarised society.

Maharat has a fact-checking section which verifies claims related to Covid-19 but also to lebanese politicians from different factions.

Maharat is already a signatory of IFCN.

Assessment Conclusion

The application was first assessed as "Compliant with changes required". The changes were minor.

As all required changes are now implemented by the applicant, we re-assessed the application as "Compliant".

on 30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago)

Naglaa Elemary assesses application as Compliant

A short summary in native publishing language

بعد إدخال كل التعديلات المطلوبة ، تمت مراجعة الطلب ومن ثم قبوله. 

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago)

Maharat-news About Us Section (https://www.maharat-news.com/about-us) that shows as well in the footer of the home page, includes that Maharat-news is incubated by Maharat Foundation, with a hyperlink to Maharat Foundation's website (http://www.maharatfoundation.org/who-we-are), where it is explicitly mentioned that Maharat Foundation is a non governmental organization (number of registration 226/2006). This complies with the criteria that Maharat-news Fact-o-meter is within a legally registered organization. (Registration certificate of NGO attached)

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf Factual Certificate_... (2 MB) About Us.png (157 KB) About Maharat (NGO).... (110 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The site of the main organisation states clearly the legal status of Maharat. 


done_all 1.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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?

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

1- Maharat-News started its work on fact checking in 2019, particularly after Maharat Foundation organized a conference on Fake news and Media Viability in April 2018. Conversations were initiated with other factchecking platforms hosted in this event including Politifact and Lupas. Maharat-news built on the best practices shared in order to draft a methodology that is relevant to the Lebanese context. The publishing started to be frequent and consistent starting September 2019. Our factchecking initiative emanated from the need for evidence based journalism in Lebanon since mainstream media are affiliated with politicians and business men which leads to biased coverage and lack of accountability. Media Development, Accountability and Media Literacy are core goals in Maharat Foundation strategic work. This was the reason behind launching a fact checking operation with maharat-news incubated by Maharat Foundation. 

2- Two full time journalists working as fact checkers, one social media expert, one data analyst, one senior editor, one supervising editor

3- Training journalists on factchecking, Debates, conferences and webinars on Media Viability, Support to independent media platforms in the MENA region through Maharat's Digital Media Viability lab (digitalmediaviability.com), Media Information Literacy Programs, Supporting media faculties to rethink journalism, Advocacy to reform media laws in lebanon, Developing tailored software and exploring use of AI in factchecking. (Maharat joined AI Collab Challenge this year) 

4- We will continue to factcheck rumors related to Covid 19, currently mostly related to the vaccines, and we will focus as well on factchecking statements of politicians in a period that is critical for Lebanon democratic process since elections are supposed to occur in 2022. We are partnering with the Lebanese Association for Democratic Elections to factcheck statements of candidates during the preparation for the electoral campaigns. 

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Applicant answered all questions giving details of the operation. The same information is available on the website.


done_all 1.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We published 44 factchecks in the past 6 months with an average of at least one factcheck a week. (List of factchecks with URLs and dates of publishing attached)

Files Attached
description Fact-checks Sheets.x... (67 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

By consulting the website, it is clear that the applicant has published an average of one fact- check per week over the last 6 months prior to the application.


done_all 1.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Most of claims are of public interest.


done_all 1.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Our organization has no relationship whatsoever with the state, politicians or political parties in Lebanon and the MENA. However, we have funding from foreign agencies and we mention explicitly in the About us section in English  (http://www.maharatfoundation.org/en/about/who-we-are)  and Arabic here http://maharatfoundation.org/who-we-are the below:

Maharat Foundation receives financial support to implement its projects according to its strategic plan from a group of donors especially United Nations development agencies such as UNICEF and UNDP and international institutions such as Hivos, Internews and Deutsche Welle Akademie. However, receiving financial support does not mean that Maharat changes its mission and priorities according to the donors. Donors do not interfere in Maharat's strategy and ways of implementation including editorial content.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The funding is mentioned in the English section. However, it doesn't exist in the Arabic version. It needs to be added in order to comply with the transparency criterion for Arabic users. 


Update:


The applicant made the required changes. All details are now available in Arabic.


done_all 1.5 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Editorial Independence is a main prerequisite for the work in our organization. All Maharat’s staff members sign, as an annex to their contracts, a Code of Conduct that includes provisions to prevent and protect against sexual exploitation and abuse in Lebanon as well as to ensure they will not take part in different engagements including Active participation in partisan politics or active affiliation with political groupings and/or armed groups which might compromise their neutrality.

Furthermore our fact-o-meter methodology published on our website ensures that as we factcheck statements not political parties or political figures. We ensure our journalists are not members or supporters of political parties and are trained on our methodology in order to factcheck only statements and not opinions. (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter)

ويعتمد هذا القسم خطا تحريريا محايدا، يقوم بالتحقق من تصاريح المسؤولين ولا يستهدف اشخاصا معينين او احزابا سياسية معينة. تحرص منصتنا على ان لا يكون من بين فريقها التحريري اعضاء او داعمين لاحزاب سياسية. وهي توفر لهم التدريب اللازم على منهجية العمل القائمة على التحقق من الوقائع وليس الأراء. تقوم منهجية التحريرعلى التأكد من الحقائق على مستويات عدة وفق سير العمل المعتمد في غرفة التحرير وكذلك اثناء تحرير الخبر عبر الاعتماد على مصادر متعددة ومتنوعة وموثوقة.

Furthermore the editorial flow of work ensures many levels of factchecking sources and information. In addition Maharat-news editorial policy includes a non partisanship paragraph as below:

تسعى مھارات نیوز الى تقدیم الحقائق بعیدا عن ایة انتماءات سیاسیة، حزبیة أو طائفیة حیث یترك الصحافیون العاملون في

.الموقع آرائھم الخاصة جانباً ویعملون بكل تجرد على تحقیق مبادئ الاستقلالیة والشفافیة

من ھذا المنطلق على الصحافیین العاملین في الموقع تجنب التعبیر عن أرائھم السیاسیة علناً وتجنب المشاركة العامة في العمل

.السیاسي

كما علیھم تجنب التعبیر عن الآراء السیاسیة على وسائل التواصل الاجتماعي. یمكنھم مشاركة مقالات اواي محتوى صحافي

.آخر، شرط الا یكون المحتوى مؤید أو معارض لشخصیة أو منصبًا سیاسیًا

یمكن للصحافیين المشاركة في الانتخابات كناخبین، لأن ذلك من حق المواطنین في الادلاء بآرائھم على ان تكون عملیة الاقتراع غیر علنیة والا یشاركوا في حملات انتخابیة او في دعم مرشحین سیاسیین معینین

Maharat Foundation
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Editorial Independence is a main prerequisite for the work in our organization. All Maharat’s staff members sign, as an annex to their contracts, a Code of Conduct that includes provisions to prevent and protect against sexual exploitation and abuse in Lebanon as well as to ensure they will not take part in different engagements including Active participation in partisan politics or active affiliation with political groupings and/or armed groups which might compromise their neutrality.

Furthermore our fact-o-meter methodology published on our website ensures that as we factcheck statements not political parties or political figures. We ensure our journalists are not members or supporters of political parties and are trained on our methodology in order to factcheck only statements and not opinions. (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter) (screenshot attached)

ويعتمد هذا القسم خطا تحريريا محايدا، يقوم بالتحقق من تصاريح المسؤولين ولا يستهدف اشخاصا معينين او احزابا سياسية معينة. تحرص منصتنا على ان لا يكون من بين فريقها التحريري اعضاء او داعمين لاحزاب سياسية. وهي توفر لهم التدريب اللازم على منهجية العمل القائمة على التحقق من الوقائع وليس الأراء. تقوم منهجية التحريرعلى التأكد من الحقائق على مستويات عدة وفق سير العمل المعتمد في غرفة التحرير وكذلك اثناء تحرير الخبر عبر الاعتماد على مصادر متعددة ومتنوعة وموثوقة.

Furthermore the editorial flow of work ensures many levels of factchecking sources and information. In addition Maharat-news editorial policy includes a non partisanship paragraph as below: A clear paragraph is reflected in the about us section of maharat-news: https://www.maharat-news.com/about-us . However it is to note that we only have an arabic version of maharat-news. (screenshot attached) 

تسعى مھارات نیوز الى تقدیم الحقائق بعیدا عن ایة انتماءات سیاسیة، حزبیة أو طائفیة حیث یترك الصحافیون العاملون في

.الموقع آرائھم الخاصة جانباً ویعملون بكل تجرد على تحقیق مبادئ الاستقلالیة والشفافیة

من ھذا المنطلق على الصحافیین العاملین في الموقع تجنب التعبیر عن أرائھم السیاسیة علناً وتجنب المشاركة العامة في العمل

.السیاسي

كما علیھم تجنب التعبیر عن الآراء السیاسیة على وسائل التواصل الاجتماعي. یمكنھم مشاركة مقالات اواي محتوى صحافي

.آخر، شرط الا یكون المحتوى مؤید أو معارض لشخصیة أو منصبًا سیاسیًا

یمكن للصحافیين المشاركة في الانتخابات كناخبین، لأن ذلك من حق المواطنین في الادلاء بآرائھم على ان تكون عملیة الاقتراع غیر علنیة والا یشاركوا في حملات انتخابیة او في دعم مرشحین سیاسیین معینین

Files Attached
Impartiality - About... (96 KB) Impartiality - About... (96 KB) Impartiality - Fact-... (37 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The policy mentioned above is not stated on the website in its two versions, Arabic and English.

It has to be added either in the section"who we are" or in a seperate one.


cancel 1.6 marked as Request change by Naglaa Elemary.
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago)

The policy mentioned above is not stated on the website in its two versions, Arabic and English.

It has to be added either in the section"who we are" or in a seperate one.


Update


The policy was added as required. 


done_all 1.6 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The past year's focus was on covid 19 related rumors that our monitoring team was collecting from social media, media and WhatsApp groups. The covid 19 rumors were selected for factchecking according to their medium or high impact as well as to their outreach and the influence of the person sharing the rumor (doctor, influential..). The results of the factchecking were used in a media bulletin that included tips for journalists (http://maharatfoundation.info/media/1875/lebanon-media-rumor-bulletin-8.pdf as well as on social media for the public to increase awareness on the importance of factchecking. 

As for other factchecking, we worked on selecting statements from different political parties, acknowledging the existence of a divided society in Lebanon, and making sure we cover all political sides. For example while factchecking statements from health public actors, we did not select only the statements that would be scored as false, on the contrary the rating was diverse between true false and half true; which shows that we use the same standards of evidence for the claims, despite the lack of trust in public actors in Lebanon. (First 3 links below). 

The other links below show that we select different political parties for factchecking for example the Lebanese forces leader, the future movement, the free patriotic movement, Amal, all representing the diverse political landscape. 

The selection included as well misinformation circulated by the media as well as by private actors that might have a high impact such as hospitals.

Also in all our factchecking we use evidence from reliable sources whenever this evidence is available; In few cases we rely on experts opinions whom we have previously identified in the newsroom as independent with credible scientific published record.


https://maharat-news.com/covidrumor10 (A statement by the parliamentary health committee about timeline for vaccines arrival to Lebanon) False

https://maharat-news.com/Vaccinesandprivatesectors (Factchecking a statement of minister of health on selling Pfizer to private sector) Half true

https://maharat-news.com/seconddosedelay (Factchecking a statement about delaying second dose) True

https://www.maharat-news.com/requiredreserves (Factchecking a statement by the Lebanese Forces Political Leader about the reserves) True

https://maharat-news.com/sputniklightenteringlebanon (A statement by Future Movement about Sputnik Light) False

https://maharat-news.com/covidrumor36 (Statements by Ali Hassan Khalil from Amal Movement and Ibrahim Kanaan for Free Patriotic movement about exclusivity of vaccines) False

https://www.maharat-news.com/coronawater (A statement of the minister of interior about swimming risks during covid) (False)

https://www.maharat-news.com/imflebanon, https://www.maharat-news.com/newmethodofvaccination (Factchecking claims by the media) 

https://www.maharat-news.com/immunitytestpostvaccination & https://www.maharat-news.com/covidrumor53 (Factchecking hospitals (Private Sector)




Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We marked this criterion "compliant" despite some weaknesses in the methodology in some stories. These weaknesses don't appear to jeopardise the overall process.


done_all 2.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Here is the link for our Methodology that explains how we select claims: https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter

Files Attached
Claims Selection.png (113 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The applicant provided the required link 


done_all 2.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We marked this criterion as compliant with a recommendation that the applicant works more on thus point in the futire in order to improve the used methodology.


done_all 2.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

From the review, we believe that the applicant meets this requirement.


done_all 2.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The applicant provided the required evidence 


done_all 2.5 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The stories include most of the relevant links. 


done_all 3.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The applicant uses primary sources in most of the claims.


done_all 3.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Most of the claims are fact-checked using more than one source 


done_all 3.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago


Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We marked this criterion as "compliant". However we recommend that identifying the interests of sources should be more practiced.


done_all 3.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Fact-o-meter is a fact checking section of maharat-news incubated by Maharat Foundation, a non profit NGO working on the promotion of freedom of expression and media development. Proof of registration attached. 

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf Factual Certificate_... (2 MB) picture_as_pdf Factual Certificate_... (2 MB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The applicant provided the required evidence


done_all 4.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

A link of the statement on maharat-news: https://www.maharat-news.com/about-us 

Files Attached
About Us.png (69 KB) About Us.png (69 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The funding is mentioned only in the English section. It is required to add a translation to the Arabic version as Arabic is the main language of the fact-checking section


Update

The applicant added the Arabic version 


done_all 4.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The methodology section published on our website (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter) includes a paragraph on the factchecking team and the workflow:

It includes the name of the 2 full time journalists working on factometer, their workflow, editorial meeting and editing supervisor. 

فريق التحقق من المعلومات

يتألف فريق التحقق من المعلومات من الصحافيين لورا رحال وبلال ياسين ، وهما خريجا كلية الاعلام ، خضعا لدورات تدربيية عدة حول التحقق من المعلومات واستخدام أدوات التحقق المفتوحة.

تقوم المديرة التنفيذية لمؤسسة مهارات رلى مخايل بالاشراف على التحرير

يقوم فريق التحقق في مهارات نيوز برصد المعلومات المتداولة على مواقع التواصل الاجتماعي وفي الاعلام وفي بيانات وتصريحات السياسيين، وذلك بهدف مواكبة النقاش العام والاتجاهات بغية اختيار التصاريح التي يمكن التحقق منها وفق المنهجية المعتمدة. ويتم الاتفاق على التصاريح التي سيتم التحقق منها في اجتماع تحرير يومي ترأسه المشرفة على التحرير

Files Attached
Team & Workflow.png (49 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Evidence is provided.


done_all 4.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Roula Mikhael Bio hyperlinked in the methodology part (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter). Link to her bio: https://www.maharat-news.com/media/3803/رلى-مخايل.pdf 

Maharat Foundation
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago)

Roula Mikhael Bio hyperlinked in the methodology part (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter). Link to her bio: https://www.maharat-news.com/media/3803/رلى-مخايل.pdf 

Files Attached
Roula Bio Arabic.png (418 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The bio is published on  the Arabic website in English. It needs to be available in Arabic.


cancel 4.4 marked as Request change by Naglaa Elemary.
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Evidence provided


done_all 4.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Also in the methodology section there is a paragraph encouraging users to send us their suggestions for claims they would like to factcheck and an email that they can address the editorial team through:

https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter 

Files Attached
Communication with R... (51 KB)
Maharat Foundation
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago)

Also in the methodology section there is a paragraph encouraging users to send us their suggestions for claims they would like to factcheck and an email that they can address the editorial team through:

https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter 

Files Attached
Social Media Account... (39 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The section mentions only the email address. Other details for the social media platforms are not included despite being mentioned by the applicant in the application. They need to be added.


cancel 4.5 marked as Request change by Naglaa Elemary.
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

The section mentions only the email address. Other details for the social media platforms are not included despite being mentioned by the applicant in the application. They need to be added.


Update


Changes were done as required 


done_all 4.5 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Evidence provided


done_all 5.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

The review of the sample confirms the importance of the claims.


done_all 5.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Evidence provided


done_all 5.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Same standards applied


done_all 5.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We marked this criterion as "compliant ". However we recommend that the applicant in the future puts more efforts in contacting the persons who made the claims in order to better understand their arguments.


done_all 5.5 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

We encourage users to send factcheck on all the platforms that we use including on our website (methodology part) as well as on social media. Our journalists and team receive as well factchecks on their WhatsApp especially when we work on media literacy projects and we use fact-o-meter an example on factchecking. It was the case in "The Rooted in Trust" Project that we implemented from October 2020 till February 2021. We built a database of rumors (around 1700 rumors collected in 5 months) from local communities through our local monitors who used social listening techniques and monitoring tools. The rumors that were selected for factchecking (due to specific criteria related to impact, outreach and source) were fact-checked and distributed back in the same channels were they circulated including WhatsApp groups. This has increased the interaction between our teams and local communities sending us any information they wanted to check its accuracy. The link to our methodology (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter) states clearly what the of statements can be fact-checked and we always try to explain to our communities that we cannot factcheck opinion.

Maharat Foundation
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago)

We encourage users to send factcheck on all the platforms that we use including on our website (methodology part) as well as on social media. Our journalists and team receive as well factchecks on their WhatsApp especially when we work on media literacy projects and we use fact-o-meter an example on factchecking. It was the case in "The Rooted in Trust" Project that we implemented from October 2020 till February 2021. We built a database of rumors (around 1700 rumors collected in 5 months) from local communities through our local monitors who used social listening techniques and monitoring tools. The rumors that were selected for factchecking (due to specific criteria related to impact, outreach and source) were fact-checked and distributed back in the same channels were they circulated including WhatsApp groups. This has increased the interaction between our teams and local communities sending us any information they wanted to check its accuracy. The link to our methodology (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter) states clearly what the of statements can be fact-checked and we always try to explain to our communities that we cannot factcheck opinion.

Files Attached
Claims - SM.png (62 KB) Claims - SM.png (62 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Although the applicant says they encourage users to send claims using social media, this is not mentioned on the website and needs to be added with marking clearly which platforms and all relevant details.


cancel 5.6 marked as Request change by Naglaa Elemary.
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
30-Jun-2021 (3 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Although the applicant says they encourage users to send claims using social media, this is not mentioned on the website and needs to be added with marking clearly which platforms and all relevant details.


Update

Required changes were made.


done_all 5.6 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Also a part in the methodology (https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter). The correction policy clears how the correction is made in a transparent way adding the date of the correction. Also background information can be added with a mention as well. Only typing mistakes are corrected without a mention. Also users are encouraged to send evidence to be used for correction:

سياسة التصحيح أو التحديث

للمنصة سياسة شفافة في ما يخص تصحيح، تعديل او تحديث للتص الاصلي، حيث يتم تحديث النص بالمعلومات الجديدة، وتتم الاشارة الى اي اضافة او تعديل على النص الاصلي وتاريخ التحديث.

يوضح التصحيح المعلومات الصحيحة التي تمت إضافتها إلى التقرير. إذا لزم الأمر، فإنه يكرر المعلومات غير الصحيحة للإشارة الى المعلومات الموردة سابقا. كما يشار صراحة الى تأثير التصحيح على التصنيف فيما لو أثرت المعلومات المضافة على نتيجة التحقق. يتم ذلك عبر اضافة فقرة على التقرير بعنوان تصحيح مع شرح للمعلومات الاضافية وتأثيرها على التصنيف.

كما نقوم بتصحيح الأخطاء المطبعية والأخطاء النحوية والأخطاء الإملائية وغيرها من الأخطاء الصغيرة التي يمكن ان ترد في التقارير عند التنبه لها دون الاشارة الى انه تم تصحيح هذه الاخطاء المطبعية.

من الممكن ايضا ان نضيف معلومات إلى التقارير بعد نشرها، ليس كتصحيح وإنما كخدمة للقراء. تتضمن الأمثلة ردًا من المتحدث الذي تلقيناه بعد النشر، أو الأخبار العاجلة او التطورات ذات الصلة بالتحقق التي تستجد بعد النشر.

كما نستقبل اقتراح القراء للتصحيح او التحديث التي نتلقاها على البريد الالكتروني: factometer@maharat-news.com 

Files Attached
Correction Policy.pn... (81 KB) Correction Policy.pn... (81 KB)
Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Evidence provided


done_all 6.1 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

Evidence provided


done_all 6.2 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

No correction request was received during the past year. Here is a link for an addition that was made on an article and referred to the date and information added to the article: https://www.maharat-news.com/eurobonds

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

We have marked this criterion as "compliant" although there was no correction made as per the applicant's statement. 


done_all 6.3 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Also in the last sentence of the methodology: https://www.maharat-news.com/fact-o-meter 

يذكر ان قسم التحقق من المعلومات في maharat-news هو عضو في الشبكة الدولية للتحقق من المعلومات IFCN. يمكنم تقديم شكوى على موقع الشبكة اذا اعتقدتم ان قسم التحقق في maharat-news يخرق مبادئ IFCN التي يمكن الاطلاع عليها على موقع الشبكة.

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

Evidence provided.


done_all 6.4 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.

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.

Maharat Foundation
31-May-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 4 months ago

NA

Naglaa Elemary Assessor
15-Jun-2021 (4 months ago) Updated: 3 months ago

NA


done_all 6.5 marked as Compliant by Naglaa Elemary.