NewsMobile FACT CHECKER

Organization: NewsMobile
Applicant: Saurabh Shukla
Assessor: Kanchan Kaur
Conclusion and recommendations
on 31-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)

Kanchan Kaur wrote:

The applicant is a division of the legally-registered World Mobile News Network. It regularly, at an average of about one or two fact-checks per week, publishes reports that evaluate distinct claims.

The applicant demonstrates that its fact checks cover a variety of subjects and do not concentrate on one side of the topic they fact-check. It has publicly declared a code of ethics/conduct on its website. It prevents its employees from taking sides, too. Key sources are usually referenced and it has a clear sourcing policy.

The applicant is a division of a media house which funds it. Its website provides in great detail all the people in the team, with their biographies.

Readers can easily reach out to the applicant. It has a clear Contact page, which lists an email address and a WhatsApp number. Its fact-checking methodology is explained clearly, in a separate page and it invites its readers to send claims.

It has a clear corrections policy. Its website explains how major mistakes are corrected within a time frame, though it does not have a public page listing corrections made.

The application may be accepted.

on 31-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)

Kanchan Kaur 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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

We have a special section on NM Fact Checker (http://newsmobile.in/articles/category/nm-fact-checker/), wherein we debunk fake news by putting verified facts before the readers. When we come across a claim or it is brought to our notice, we check it for factual accuracy. Our platform also features breaking news, exclusive stories and user-generated content, selected by our team. We started independent fact-checking in January 2017, when fake news started not only misleading but influencing people.

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf incorporation certif... (213 KB)
Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)

The applicant is a division of the legally-registered World Mobile News Network.


done_all 1a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

NewsMobile has a separate landing page for Fact Checks (http://newsmobile.in/articles/category/nm-fact-checker/) and we also have a Corrections Editor who works independent of our newsroom.

http://newsmobile.in/articles/category/nm-fact-checker/

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant regularly, at an average of about one or two fact-checks per week publishes reports that evaluate distinct claims. 


done_all 1b marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

We have been consistent with fact-checking and busting fake news despite having limited resources and we work very passionately to uphold the truth.

We have added a Form called ‘FAKE NEWS BUSTER’ for fact-checking on all fact checks to make it easy for the reader to file a fact check claim.


http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/05/06/raga-was-not-drinking-beer-on-board-before-addressing-a-rally-heres-the-truth/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/19/pm-modi-didnt-share-a-meal-with-pak-pm-imran-khan-heres-the-fact-check/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/26/pm-modis-wife-did-not-urge-voters-to-vote-against-him-heres-the-fact-check/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/07/27/these-pictures-of-earth-were-not-sent-by-chandrayaan-2/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/24/the-woman-in-this-viral-picture-is-not-ragas-wife-heres-the-truth/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/26/fact-checked-raga-didnt-eat-chips-at-martyrs-home/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/18/fact-checked-sundar-pichai-did-not-cast-his-vote-in-tn-this-elections-heres-the-truth/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/15/fact-checked-this-picture-is-not-from-namos-rally-in-kolkata/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/03/22/fact-checked-voters-will-not-have-to-pay-rs-350-if-they-do-not-cast-their-vote/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/15/fact-checked-no-wing-commander-abhinandan-never-made-this-appeal/

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/08/21/smriti-mandhana-didnt-become-the-first-women-cricketer-to-score-double-century-in-odi/

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant demonstrates that its fact checks cover a variety of subjects and do not concentrate on one side of the topic they fact-check.  


done_all 2a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

This has been complied with as suggested by the assessor please see the NewsMobile code of conduct which has been put out on our website.

http://newsmobile.in/about-us/

Our journalists are objective while reporting and we have the policy to ensure that our team is not affiliated to any political party or an advocacy group and are fair and transparent in their editorial opinion.

This forms part of the NewsMobile Code of Conduct which is signed by our employees.

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf NEWSMOBILE CODE OF C... (369 KB) NEWSMOBILE CODE OF C... (477 KB)
Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant has publicly declared a code of ethics/conduct on their website. The applicant has provided a copy of the code that employees sign when they join.


done_all 2b marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago


Please see our response to 5A we have also listed our methodology and an Editors note is also put out on the Fact Check mentioned by the assessor.

We debunk fake news by giving verified facts before the readers. When we come across a claim or it is brought to our notice, we check it for factual accuracy. Our platform also features breaking news, exclusive stories and user-generated content selected by our team. In the four years of our existence, we found that fake news is spreading more than the accurate news, harming people and setting off reactions. We started independent fact-checking in January 2017, when fake news started not only misleading but influencing people. If a correction has been brought to our notice we have gone ahead and rectified the stories after verifying the claims.

Through our modest means, NM fact-check team comprises of young journalists trained by Google news labs and our senior journalists, have followed the following methodology to fact check stories that appear in NM Fact Checker section.

NewsMobile’s efforts to bust fake news during Indian Elections 2019 were also featured in a special BBC world show the Click (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkBV2KtgDUA ).

NewsMobile Editor-in-Chief Saurabh Shukla was also featured on a special show on India’s national radio station All India Radio which is heard by millions of people. Where he spoke about efforts of NewsMobile, IFCN and Facebook to curb fake news. (https://soundcloud.com/newsmobile-1/newsmobile-editor-in-chief-saurabh-shukla-at-air-speaking-about-busting-fake-news/s-d5G0k)

How We Fact Check

• Importance of the story: How important is the story, and can it create a potentially dangerous situation, the likelihood of a communal riot or can it harm a community, or can it create panic in communities.

• Tracking the source: We track the source of the claim and then cross-check with multiple sources. If a public figure or person of authority has made the claim then we reach out to them directly to confirm the claim. If there is video evidence, publicly available transcript, report or data we take a deep-dive approach to find the exact quote and context. If need be, we contact the organisation that has published the reports to understand the disclaimer.

• Use Tools/technology: We use Google and other tools like Google Reverse Image Search to knock down and derail fake claims. We sift through reams of data and databases to support a claim or debunk a claim. If there is not enough data to take a clear stand, we say that too.

• Panel of Domain Experts: This is often important because as a news organisation we do not claim expertise in every field. However, we have a network of domain experts who understand our commitment to factual accuracy and help us maintain high standards.

• Preparing a fact sheet.

• And then a fact-based story is put out.

• Correction Policy: Facts and truth are at the centre of NewsMobile’s Editorial policy, our team of journalists have broken stories on corruption at high places questioned those in power and we are fearless, unbiased and objective. We have an impeccable record as a credible media outlet. However, as a responsible Media outlet, we are open to corrections. We invite readers to write to us at editor@newsmobile.in with a date and link to the story and we fact-check the claim and correct it.

• Correction Advisory: While we have been very particular about correcting the inadvertent errors right from the word go, irrespective of whether it was pointed out by our readers, our network of experts, competition or by our own team members, we have recently started adding an ‘editor’s note’ at the end of stories that has been corrected. This is in the interest of transparency and in tandem with the global best practices.

•Fact-Checking Hotline: We have a Fact Check Alert number for WhatsApp +91-8826800707. Readers are invited to forward a new story or a message on social media that they would like to get fact-checked. They can also e-mail it at editor@newsmobile.in with the title Fact Check and our Fact-Checking team will check the story and publish the truth.

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

In the applicant's reports, key sources are usually referenced. The applicant has explained its sourcing policy.


done_all 3a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)

http://newsmobile.in/about-us/

www.newsmobile.in (NewsMobile) is the news and content platform of World Mobile News Network Pvt Ltd, a private limited company registered in India. Our funding was provided by our co-founders who are senior journalists and media academics from their personal savings.

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant is a division of a media house and has declared that its funding comes from the media house. 


done_all 4a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

http://newsmobile.in/about-us/


THE TEAM

Dr SC SHUKLA

Editorial Director and Co-Founder

The Founder Principal of Delhi College and Arts and Commerce founded the biggest ever nursery of journalists in India where he mentored some of the best known young journalists in India. Credibility, integrity and fact-checking are the mantras he provided us for NewsMobile and its young team. He is the conscience keeper and disciplinarian to our wayward gang of newshounds and techies.


SAURABH SHUKLA

Editor in Chief and Co-Founder

Saurabh has over twenty years of journalism experience. He has been known for his fearless journalism. He has interviewed many global leaders, during an interview, he asked Donald Trump to apologise for his anti-women remarks. He broke the Dawood tapes, the first exclusive tapes on India’s most wanted fugitive.

He has exposed corruption in high places. His expose on Indian connection on Iraq’s oil for food scandal forced the resignation of India’s then Foreign Minister K.Natwar Singh.

He has been known for his credible journalism. He has served in leadership roles in Top Indian media organisations The India Today Group, Indian Express and Hindustan Times. He is been quoted in the New York Times and The Guardian and has been a commentator for many global channels. He has spoken on Fact checking at prominent forums like the Harvard University and MIT.

Email: saurabh@newsmobile.in


ABHEET RAGHAV

Senior News Editor

He is passionate about fair and transparent reporting. Whenever a claim is made he leaves no stone unturned in identifying the source. He is working with NewsMobile for last four years. He underwent Google training for identifying and checking fake news and utilizes it to fact-check.

Email: abheet@newsmobile.in


KSHIPRA NARAIN

Editor Special Projects

She joined online media two years ago after spending a decade in the corporate world. She is particular about getting the facts right and ensures that everyone on the team follows the practice of fair and non-partisan reporting.

Email: kshipra@newsmobile.in


SHWETA MISHRA

Assistant Editor

Shweta is a journalism graduate from India’s top college- Lady Shri Ram College (University of Delhi). She has been working with NewsMobile as a news writer & a Fact Checker. She underwent Google training for identifying and checking the fake news.

Email: shwetamishra9497@gmail.com


PRASHASTI ARORA

Assistant Editor 

Prashasti is a journalism graduate from Lady Shri Ram College. She strongly believes in the need and merits of delving deeper into stories and gaining alternative perspectives. She underwent the 'Facebook Journalism Project' which focuses on digital video training. Prior to NewsMobile, she had a stint with The Economic Times as a digital content producer.

Email: prashasti1232@gmail.com


RASHI HARSHA

Fact-Checker

Rashi Harsha is a journalism graduate from India’s top college Inderprastha College for Women (Delhi University). She has been working with NewsMobile as a Fact Checker. She underwent Google training for identifying and checking the fake news.

Email: rashiharsha22@gmail.com


NEHA PARASHAR

Correction Editor

She is a Journalism graduate and management graduate from Symbiosis University Pune. She has a keen eye for copy editing and fact-checking. As a consultant, Neha helps NewsMobile fact-check news stories and ensure credible and error-free news stories.

(In order to ensure objectivity and transparency we have a corrections Editor who works independently of our newsroom)


PRADEEP SINGH

Technical Director

PK, as he is fondly called, is a tech war veteran from the Silicon Valley and IIT Delhi. He provides the tech edge for our fact-checking. He keeps the tech fundas up to speed and delivers on our crazy ideas of creating different content with cutting-edge technology.


Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant's website provides in great detail all the people in the team, with their biographies. 


done_all 4b marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)
Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Readers can easily reach out to the applicant. It has a clear Contact page, which lists an email address and a WhatsApp number. 


done_all 4c marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

http://newsmobile.in/about-us/

As advised by the Assessor Ms Kanchan Kaur we have created a separate section on how we fact check which gives details of our methodology. 

http://newsmobile.in/how-we-fact-check/ 

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/04/15/fact-checked-no-wing-commander-abhinandan-never-made-this-appeal/  (Please see the Editor's note)

How We Fact Check

Importance of the story: How important is the story, and can it create a potentially dangerous situation, the likelihood of a communal riot or can it harm a community, or can it create panic in communities.

Tracking the source: We track the source of the claim and then cross-check with multiple sources. If a public figure or person of authority has made the claim then we reach out to them directly to confirm the claim. If there is video evidence, publicly available transcript, report or data we take a deep-dive approach to find the exact quote and context. If need be, we contact the organisation that has published the reports to understand the disclaimer.

Use Tools/technology: We use Google and other tools like Google Reverse Image Search to knock down and derail fake claims. We sift through reams of data and databases to support a claim or debunk a claim. If there is not enough data to take a clear stand, we say that too

Panel of Experts: This is often important because as a news organisation we do not claim expertise in every field. However, we have a network of experts who understand our commitment to factual accuracy and help us maintain high standards

Preparing a fact sheet.

And then a fact-based story is put out.

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant's fact-checking methodology is explained clearly, in a separate page.  


done_all 5a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant very clearly invites its readers to send claims. It does so at the end of each fact-check. It also has a small form for them to fill up to send claims, apart from a WhatsApp number. It does not, however, indicate the frequency of reader-submitted fact checks published. 


done_all 5b marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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.

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago)

http://newsmobile.in/about-us/

Fact-Checking Hotline: We have a Fact Check Alert number for WhatsApp +91-8826800707. Readers are invited to forward a new story or a message on social media that they would like to get fact-checked. They can also e-mail it at editor@newsmobile.in with the title Fact Check and our Fact-Checking team will check the story and publish the truth.

Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant's website explains, in a separate section, how major mistakes are corrected. It also provides a time frame. 


done_all 6a marked as Fully compliant by Kanchan Kaur.

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

NewsMobile
22-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago


Please see the example of a correction made to a Fact Check. We will work with our technical team to get public page on the corrections made. 

http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/07/03/pm-modi-didnt-visit-manmohan-singh-to-seek-advice-ahead-of-the-union-budget/ (Please see at the bottom of the story)


We have an external correction editor who does an independent review and advises us on corrections to be made in addition we also have advertised our correction policy on the website so the readers can approach us. Apart from that readers also send us corrections via e-mail or WhatsApp.


1) http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/10/21/maharashtra-and-haryana-election-trail-all-you-need-to-know/ (Please see at the bottom of the story)

2) http://newsmobile.in/articles/2019/02/27/iaf-strike-live-updates-training-camp-in-balakot-destroyed-over-300-terrorists-eliminated/ (Please see the attachment)  



Files Attached
Screenshot 2019-10-2... (20 KB)
Kanchan Kaur Assessor
24-Oct-2019 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The applicant does not have a public page listing corrections made, but has committed to have one. It has provided one example of a correction made.  


done 6b marked as Partially compliant by Kanchan Kaur.