Organization: NUnl
Applicant: NUcheckt
Assessor: Henk van Ess
Edits made by the organization after this assessment

IFCN Staff wrote:

After the assessment, the organization made the following edits:


Published a separate page about the project, with specific information (1A & corrections policy 6A)):

www.nu.nl/nucheckt

Published article that explains more (also about the funding) (1A & 4A):

https://www.nu.nl/jaaroverzicht-2018/5649236/redactieblog-strijd-nepnieuws-gaat.html

Provide more information about the methodology (5A) & how to submit claims to fact-check (5B):

https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt/5660663/nunl-nepnieuws-beoordeelt.html

Finally, more information about (4b) as requested by the assessor is available at

www.nu.nl/colofon


Conclusion and recommendations
on 22-Oct-2018 (1 year ago)

Henk van Ess wrote:

Applicant claims to check news on a daily basis. It's not every day, but they do easily meet the criterium of at least one report a week. The statute is similar to that of other Dutch newspapers with a strict Chinese wall between news department and commercial departments. The applicant uses hyperlinks to sources by default and allows users to follow the "train of facts" easily and allows direct replies of readers.  Almost all contributions in the last three months are written by one person who isn't listed in the link applicant provided ( https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.htm). Applicant should clearly state that the current project has nothing to do with team they listed on https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.html or if they still do, include these contributors in the articles from now on. Applicant provides a link that isn't the offical contact page of their own brand. That link is https://www.nu.nl/contact.html and includes SMS/Whatsapp/Telegram contact - information that is not on the page that apllicant provided. There is not enough information available about the methodology of applicant. The variety of subjects should be monitored. In one case applicant didn't check the facts themselves, but solely depended on a press agency. Sometimes there is no editor or press agency mentioned at all as author.

on 22-Oct-2018 (1 year ago)

Henk van Ess 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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Sanoma Media Netherlands (for further info: http://www.sanoma.nl)

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

We suggest applicant makes a  page with specific information about the project. The applicant provided a generic webpage which is not "set up exclusively for the purpose of fact-checking or the distinct fact-checking project" It is the link of a media company mainly specialised in magazines (from Donald Duck to car magazines) who has also a well known news brand in the Netherlands called NU.NL - the brand of applicant. There is a page on nu.nl explaining an experiment for Facebook fact checking, see https://www.nu.nl/blog/4509129/redactieblog-waarom-nunl-helpt-met-factchecken-facebook.html , a tag "fake news", https://www.nu.nl/tag/Nepnieuws There is no specific explanation for the project NUcheckt on https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt  


done 1a marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago
Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Applicant claims to check news on a daily basis, according to the intro of each fact check. It's not every day, but they do easily meet the criterium of at least one report a week.


done_all 1b marked as Fully compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Applicant started in 2017 with debunking/checking Facebook memes. Topics are often health related - see the 10 fact checks NU.NL provided themselves.  The last 100 fact checks, over 50% were health related.  The fact checks related to health do differ in "weight": and can range from fact checking  based on commercial firms who publish a  often sloppy survey to international scientific studies. The variety of subjects is something to monitor:  NU Factcheck didn't publish a substantial number of reports about economy, politics, immigration or education. 

In one case applicant didn't check the facts themselves, but solely depended on a press agency, see https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt/5521058/nucheckt-in-bad-verbrand-niet-evenveel-calorieen-als-met-sporten.html

Sometimes there is no editor or press agency mentioned at all as fact checker, see https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt/5255645/nucheckt-zzpers-gelukkiger-dan-werknemers-in-loondienst.html



done_all 2a marked as Fully compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

All our editors work according to the journalistic principles of editorial independence, objectivity and reliability, as laid down in the Bordeaux Code --> http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_van_Bordeaux. In the attachment by e-mail our statute (in Dutch).

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf 2b - Redactieregelem... (57 KB)
Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

The statute is similar to that of other Dutch newspapers with a strict Chinese wall between news department and commercial departments. There is no evidence NU.NL has any political agenda. Applicants target group is broad and they do allow replies of readers - which helps to neutralize any possible bias.


done_all 2b marked as Fully compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Our readers must be able to check our sources themselves. In the published articles we give enough details to do so. We share links from websites of our sources, we explain why we consulted a particular expert on the topic. We do not have a published public policy, but again we work according to the Bordeaux Code.

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

The online newssite uses hyperlinks to sources by default and allows users to follow the "train of facts" easily.


done_all 3a marked as Fully compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Sanoma Media Netherlands B.V. is part of the listed Sanoma Group, a media and education company that provides information and entertainment for millions of people in many European countries. We have listed its ownership in the about section: https://www.nu.nl/colofon.html

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

There is no breakdown how Nu Factcheck is financed besides generic hyperlink to the mother company. Our advise is that Nu.nl makes a page where they explain if they receive specific funding for this project  - which started with the help of Facebook  in 2017 - or that they pay for the fact checking completely themselves as is already stated in a news article


done 4a marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

http://www.nu.nl/colofon.html

The organization has also added short biographies of the staff working on the project: https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.html available from the main page of the project https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago
For we can establish, all contributions in the last three months are written by one person who isn't listed in the link applicant provided ( https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.htm). The person is called Shannon Bakker and is listed in the Colofon as the only person for Nucheckt. Applicant should clearly state the the current project has nothing to do with the team they listed on https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.html or if they still do, include these contributors in the articles. The last 50 articles seem all to exlude any of the authors from https://www.nu.nl/blog/4930679/redacteuren-dagelijks-factchecken-nunl.html


If there is  one dedicated person that does the fact checking, applicant should include this in the evidence provided.



done 4b marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago
Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

Applicant provides a link that isn't the offical contact page of their own brand. That link is https://www.nu.nl/contact.html and includes SMS/Whatsapp/Telegram contact  - information that is not on the page that apllicant provided.


done 4c marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

The provided link is incorrect and should read https://www.nu.nl/blog/4509129/redactieblog-waarom-nunl-helpt-met-factchecken-facebook.html

That link roughly explains why they teamed up with Facebook, but doesn't include any information about what steps Nu.Nl take themselves in the editorial process.

The second link http://www.nu.nl/nucheckt/4778466/nucheckt-meld-mogelijk-nepnieuws-facebook.html is about how to report fake news yourself and doesn't reveal anything about the way Nu.nl workflow for fact checking.

We suggest that applicant explains  methodology a little better.



done 5a marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

This link provided by applicant is irrelevant because it explains how users can file suspicious news to Facebook, not to Nu.Nl. 

We found, although not provided by applicant, that Nu Factcheck does have a place where they invite readers to submit a fact check: at the end of each fact check article. There is no dedicated section for this.


done 5b marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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.

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago
Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

The link provided leads to a generic email address.


done 6a marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.

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

NUnl
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

In our work as fact checkers we have not yet come across a correction request. However, at NU.nl we have a close relationship with our readers. They can respond directly to each article, and then be in direct contact with our so called NUjij-editors. When a fix is necessary, we'll fix the error.

Henk van Ess Assessor
29-Aug-2018 (1 year ago) Updated: 1 year ago

In https://www.nu.nl/nucheckt/4829790/nucheckt-gaf-nunl-onjuist-aantal-demonstranten-baudet.html?redirect=1 Nu.nl admit themselves that they made an unlucky error, see also https://politiek.tpo.nl/2017/07/11/nu-nl-geeft-toe-we-zaten-fout-met-cijfers-demonstratie-tegen-thierry-baudet/

Although it may be true that the company didn't receive any correction requests,  online (as always) people do complain, see  https://www.ninefornews.nl/factchecken-media-besteed-rothschilds/



The interaction with readers, also on fact checking articles, is very open. This allows Nu Factcheck to change or edit small or big errors. There is no transparancy like New York Times where you can always see if an edit has been made or an error has been fixed and also when and why the edit was made.


done 6b marked as Partially compliant by Henk van Ess.