Reuters

Organization: Reuters
Applicant: Hazel Baker
Assessor: Julie Homchick Crowe

Background

Reuters Fact Check has been operating officially since January 2020 but fact checking has been a part of its parent media company for much longer. Reuters is a highly respected global media outlet with headquarters in the US and ties to Canada and the UK.

Assessment Conclusion

Reuters Fact Check is an exemplary fact checking service. They demonstrate a fair and balanced approach in applying their standards and criteria in their fact-checks and remain non-partisan in their work. I recommend that they receive their renewal so they can continue to be part of the IFCN.

on 20-May-2021 (5 months ago)

Julie Homchick Crowe assesses application as Compliant

A short summary in native publishing language

The assessor requested a minor change and Reuters provided documentation of it. Overall, the assessor finds Reuters Fact Check compliant and recommends their renewal.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Reuters News is part of Thomson Reuters, a corporation listed on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges. Further details about Thomson Reuters, including Annual Reports, are available here: https://www.thomsonreuters.com/en/about-us.html
This page is directly linked to from the Reuters Fact Check "About Us" page. A link to the "About Us" page is carried on all fact checks. 
A footer that sits on the Reuters.com homepage and the Reuters.com/fact-check landing page also carries the following information: "Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV".  A link to the Thomson Reuters homepage is provided.

Files Attached
ReutersHomePage_foot... (37 KB)
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago)

Reuters News is a unit within Thomas Reuters and these details are easily found on their website.


done_all 1.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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?

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

1. "Reuters Fact Check" began work in January 2020, but prior to this date Reuters was routinely fact-checking claims as part of its core newsgathering efforts. The Fact Check team was a natural extension of the user-generated content newsgathering team, which specialises in the verification of material posted on social media and regularly encounters misleading content. The Fact Check team was created to give an outlet for this information and to respond to a growing awareness of the threat posed by misinformation. 

2. Reuters Fact Check comprises of one head of fact-checking, two senior fact-checking producers and ten fact-checking producers. The team receives additional reporting, editing, legal and business support from many other teams within Reuters News.

3. Reuters Fact Check is purely focused on the identification, research and publishing of articles relating to claims appearing on digital platforms.

4. Reuters Fact Check aims to publish in more regions and languages, respond even more closely to concerns and confusion detected in the regions we serve and further make use of its extensive body of fact-checks to identify patterns and recurring issues.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters News operates as a global news outlet with offices in the United States, Canada and the UK. While fact-checking had long been a part of Reuters' newsgathering efforts, the rise of online misinformation in recent years led to an increased need for a focus on fact-checking and so they developed "Reuters Fact Check" in response to this need.

With its headquarters in the US, Reuters News is operating within a highly fragmented political climate that is to some degree driven by misinformation online. The US has two primary political parties - Democrats and Republicans - that are highly oppositional to each other in terms of policies and values. Issues that have been particularly susceptible to misinformation in the last year are: the COVID-19 pandemic and political claims about candidates (particularly when those candidates are Democrats, like recently elected Joe Biden or former candidate Hilary Clinton). Former president Donald Trump would regularly share misinformation online and many believe he contributed to the increase in misinformation sharing among the public.

Reuters Fact Check appears to be set up exclusively for fact checking - even though fact checking has been a part of Reuters News before January 2020, Reuters Fact Check is now a distinct project with the specific intention of combating misinformation online.


done_all 1.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

March 1 2020 through February 28 2021

1. 5 March 2021

“Every election year has a disease” examined

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-election-year-diseases/partly-false-claim-every-election-year-has-a-disease-idUSKBN20S2X0

2. 13 March 2021

Map does not accurately show states that have declared a state of emergency due to the outbreak of coronavirus

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-coronavirus-camps/partly-false-claim-this-map-shows-all-states-currently-in-a-state-of-emergency-due-to-the-covid-19-pandemic-as-well-as-covid-19-camps-idUSKBN210363

3. 17 March 2021

New coronavirus is not the same as a common cold

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-coronavirus-common-cold/false-claim-the-new-coronavirus-is-a-common-cold-idUSKBN2142MC

4. 26 March 2020

A list of eight coronavirus-related “facts” examined

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-coronavirus-eight-facts/partly-false-claim-a-list-of-eight-coronavirus-related-facts-idUSKBN21D3EY

5. 1 April 2020

Saddam Hussein did not speak about the coronavirus

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-hussein-coronavirus/false-claim-saddam-hussein-spoke-about-coronavirus-idUSKBN21J65J

6. 7 April 2020

Harvard professor was not arrested for selling the new coronavirus to China

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-harvard-doctor-arrested-cor/false-headline-claim-harvard-doctor-arrested-for-creating-and-selling-the-new-coronavirus-to-china-idUSKBN21P292

7. 14 April 2020

US not slowly introducing martial law

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-coronavirus-introducing-mar/false-claim-u-s-coronavirus-response-slowly-introducing-martial-law-idUSKCN21W250

8. 24 April 2020

Michigan governor did not authorise lethal force to maintain lockdown

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-whitmer-lethal-force/false-claim-michigan-governor-gretchen-whitmer-authorizes-lethal-force-to-maintain-state-lockdown-idUSKCN2262C1

9. 29 April 2020

Bill Gates did not refuse to vaccinate his children

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-bill-gates-vaccinate-childr/false-claim-bill-gates-refused-to-vaccinate-his-children-idUSKBN22B26Z

10. 4 May 2020

Japanese Nobel laureate did not say the coronavirus was manufactured

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-japanese-nobel-coronavirus/false-claim-japanese-nobel-laureate-tasuku-honjo-said-coronavirus-was-manufactured-idUSKBN22G1XE

11. 12 May 2020

Coronavirus infections are not cases of lung damage casued by 5G

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-radiation-pneumonitis/false-claim-coronavirus-infections-are-actually-cases-of-lung-inflammation-caused-by-5g-idUSKBN22O2Y1

12. 26 May 2020

Video shared on social media is edited version of Joe Biden’s appearance on The View

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-biden-theview/fact-check-video-shared-on-social-media-is-edited-version-of-joe-bidens-appearance-on-the-view-idUSKBN2322U4

13. 27 May 2020

Rapper Kanye West did not predict coronavirus outbreak

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-kanye-lockdown/fact-check-rapper-kanye-west-did-not-predict-coronavirus-outbreak-idUSKBN23334J

14. 01 June 2020

Washington, D.C. did not have a city-wide blackout on June 1, 2020

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-dc-blackout-protests/factcheckwashingtond-c-did-not-have-a-city-wide-blackoutat-1-a-m-on-june-1-2020-idUSKBN2383OK

15. 10 June 2020

Deaths of six police officers did not occur during recent protests

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-death-police-protests/fact-check-death-of-six-police-officers-did-not-occur-during-recent-protests-idUSKBN23H28F

16. 17 June 2020

Trump tweet on Candace Owens is fake

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-candace-owens/fact-check-trump-tweet-on-candace-owens-is-fabricated-idUSKBN23O2JA

17. 22 June 2020

'ANTIFA against bikers' banner has been photoshopped

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-antifa-bikers/fact-check-antifa-against-bikers-banner-has-been-photoshopped-idUSKBN23T23I

18. 30 June 2020

Photos do not show children in the US in cages

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-cages/fact-check-photos-of-children-in-cages-dont-show-migrant-kids-in-u-s-idUSKBN24117B

19. 7 July 2020

BBC News has not published a future date article saying Ghislaine Maxwell is in intensive care for coronavirus

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-bbc-ghislaine/fact-check-bbc-news-has-not-published-a-future-date-article-saying-ghislaine-maxwell-is-in-intensive-care-for-coronavirus-idUSKBN2482NS

20. 13 July 2020

No evidence linking Wayfair to human trafficking operation

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-wayfair-human-trafficking/fact-check-no-evidence-linking-wayfair-to-human-trafficking-operation-idUSKCN24E2M2

21. 17 July 2020

False data on U.S. racial murder rates

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-data-racial-murder/fact-check-false-data-on-u-s-racial-murder-rates-idUSKCN24I2A9

22. 23 July 2020

Aardvark is mistaken for Egyptian god of the dead in logo of COVID testing trucks

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-anubis-idUSKCN24O2FI?fbclid=IwAR2R0iI8lz4fRk-eIl0h9BCuhYPX5rteMvHlMUZPo_pRcupor83e1Ys7qmE

23. 27 July 2020

Image shows three absentee ballots for different individuals at an address

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-three-ballots-three-people/fact-checkphoto-of-mail-inballotsis-misleadingactually-showsthreeabsenteeballotsfor-onehousehold-idUSKCN24S1WM

24. 3 August 2020

Photo questioning Kamala Harris’ African ancestry does not show her parents

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-photo-kamala-harris-parents/fact-check-photo-questioning-kamala-harris-african-ancestry-does-not-show-her-parents-idUSKCN24Z1UF

25. 14 August 2020

There are no federal laws on cashless payment, but some states prohibit businesses refusing cash

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-business-cashless-illegal/fact-check-there-are-no-federal-laws-on-cashless-payment-but-some-states-prohibit-businesses-refusing-cash-idUSKCN25A1RY

16. 19 August 2020

Brock Turner not named as a speaker at the Republican National Convention

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-turner/fact-check-brock-turner-not-named-as-a-speaker-at-the-republican-national-convention-idUSKCN25F2IA

27. 25 August 2020

Joe Biden’s acceptance speech at the DNC was not pre-recorded

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-fact-check-biden-dnc-speech-was-live/fact-check-joe-bidens-acceptance-speech-at-the-dnc-was-not-pre-recorded-idUSKBN25L1ZH

28. 1 September 2020

Video showing Joe Biden falling asleep during live interview is manipulated

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-biden-asleep-altered/fact-check-video-showing-joe-biden-falling-asleep-during-live-interview-is-manipulated-idUSKBN25S63S

29. 9 September 2020

World Bank website does not show COVID-19 testing kits were purchased in 2017 and 2018

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-covid-worldbank-2017-2018/factcheckworld-bankwebsite-does-not-showcovid-19-testing-kits-werepurchasedin-2017-and-2018-idUSKBN26025U

30. 16 September 2020

Comparison of proposed taxes under Biden and Trump looks at highest tax bracket only

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-biden-trump-proposed-taxes/fact-check-comparison-of-proposed-taxes-under-biden-and-trump-looks-at-highest-tax-bracket-only-idUSKBN2672GE

31. 23 September 2020

Dr Oz remarks on flu shot increasing chances of getting COVID-19 misrepresented

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-dr-oz-flu-shot/fact-check-dr-oz-remarks-on-flu-shot-increasing-chances-of-getting-covid-19-misrepresented-idUSKCN26E2JD

32. 28 September 2020

Video shows Louisville protesters pulled out signs, not weapons from U-Haul truck

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-louisville-protesters-signs/fact-checkvideo-shows-louisville-protesterspulledoutsigns-notweaponsfromu-haul-truck-idUSKBN26J2FU

33. 8 October 2020

Declaration of Independence text was shown behind both vice presidential candidates in debate

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-declaration-of-independence/fact-checkdeclaration-of-independencetextwasshownbehindbothvice-presidentialcandidates-indebate-idUSKBN26T3H1

34. 14 October 2020

Kentucky election results tweeted by Kanye West are not valid

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-kanye-west-kentucky/fact-check-kentucky-election-results-tweeted-by-kanye-west-are-not-valid-idUSKBN26Z2PI

35. 21 October 2020

Trump did not say he would phone the CEO of Exxon to get him to donate millions to the presidential campaign; misses context

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-exxon-donation/fact-check-trump-did-not-say-he-would-phone-the-ceo-of-exxon-to-get-him-to-donate-millions-to-the-presidential-campaign-misses-context-idUSKBN276256

36. 28 October 2020

Democrats did not ‘slip a law’ banning Pledge of Allegiance into aid package

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-satire-pledge-of-allegiance/fact-check-democrats-did-not-slip-a-law-banning-pledge-of-allegiance-into-aid-package-idUSKBN27D2NP

37. 3 November 2020

Letters giving COVID-19 quarantine orders are not linked to Pennsylvania election race

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-pennsylvania/fact-check-letters-giving-covid-19-quarantine-orders-are-not-linked-to-pennsylvania-election-race-idUSKBN27J1AF

38. 10 November 2020

Video shows police collecting discarded Amazon packages, not thousands of Trump ballots

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-packages/fact-check-video-shows-police-collecting-discarded-amazon-packages-not-thousands-of-trump-ballots-idUSKBN27Q2JC

39. 20 November 2020

People will not have to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to receive food stamps and rent assistance

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-food-stamps-vaccine/fact-check-people-will-not-have-to-be-vaccinated-against-covid-19-to-receive-food-stamps-and-rent-assistance-idUSKBN2802LY

40. 25 November 2020

Dominion and Smartmatic voting systems are not shutting down and executives are not “on the run”

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-dominion-smartmatic-shuttin/fact-check-dominion-and-smartmatic-voting-systems-are-not-shutting-down-and-executives-are-not-on-the-run-idUSKBN28520Q

41. 1 December 2020

False excerpt from Trump’s ‘Art of the Deal’ on ‘never admitting defeat’

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-never-admit-defeat/fact-check-false-excerpt-from-trumps-art-of-the-deal-on-never-admitting-defeat-idUSKBN28B5XI

42. 9 December 2020

Colorado vaccination bill SB-163 does not force the flu, HPV and COVID-19 vaccines on children

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-fact-check-colorad-vaccine-bill-updat/fact-check-colorado-vaccination-bill-sb-163-does-not-force-the-flu-hpv-and-covid-19-vaccines-on-children-idUSKBN28J2RW

43. 14 December 2020

Photo does not show three recipients of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine that developed Bell’s palsy

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-bells-palsy-photo/fact-check-photo-does-not-show-three-recipients-of-pfizers-covid-19-vaccine-that-developed-bells-palsy-idUSKBN28O2WD

44. 22 December 2020

Fake ‘Prague newspaper’ article repurposed to attack Biden supporters

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-prague-newspaper/fact-check-fake-prague-newspaper-article-repurposed-to-attack-biden-supporters-idUSKBN28W1SO

45. 29 December 2020

Debunking conspiracy links between Nashville explosion, Dominion and AT&T

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-att-dominion-nashville-bomb/fact-check-debunking-conspiracy-links-between-nashville-explosion-dominion-and-att-idUSKBN2931BI

46. 6 January 2021

D.C. police did not act as 'private security' for ‘Antifa' on Jan. 6, claims feature old video

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-antifa-police-dc/fact-check-d-c-police-did-not-act-as-private-security-for-antifa-on-jan-6-claims-feature-old-video-idUSKBN29B2V7

47. 11 January 2021

Donald Trump concession video not a ‘confirmed deepfake’

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-consession-video-deep/fact-check-donald-trump-concession-video-not-a-confirmed-deepfake-idUSKBN29G2NL

48. 19 January 2021

3,150 people were not ‘paralyzed’ after receiving COVID-19 vaccine

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-cdc-3150/fact-check-3150-people-were-not-paralyzed-after-receiving-covid-19-vaccine-idUSKBN29O2HF

49. 30 January 2021

Video clip of an American investor discussing GameStop shares has been edited

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-gamestop/fact-check-video-clip-of-an-american-investor-discussing-gamestop-shares-has-been-edited-idUSKBN29Z0GE

50 4 Feb 2021

Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry and Mitt Romney do not have sons on boards of energy companies doing business in Ukraine

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-pelosi-kerry-romney-sons-uk-idUSKBN2A42N9

51. 11 Feb 2021

Digitally altered image of Melania Trump holding up Trump t-shirt

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-melania-tshirt-idUSKBN2AB1TI

52. 19 Feb 2021

The causes for Texas’ blackout go well beyond wind turbines

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-texas-wind-turbines-explain-idUSKBN2AJ2EI

53. 22 Feb 2021

Photo of massive protest in Romania is four years old and unrelated to COVID-19 restrictions

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-2017-bucharest-protests-not-idUSKBN2AM286

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Based on the submissions from Reuters Fact Check, the project is publishing more than one fact check per week over the last 12 months.

As a note, the archives of Reuters Fact Check is a bit hard to navigate. At Reuters.com/fact-check the archive appears to only go back Feb. 25, 2021. By searching on the the Reuters main page, "fact check" I was able to generate results that showed fact checks happening multiple times per week (though the results did not appear in chronological order, so it took some work determining if they posted fact checks weekly over the last twelve months).

Also just to note: the first three fact checks they provided are from 2020, not 2021.


done_all 1.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

In a review of the fact checks posted over the last three months, the assessor found that nearly all of the fact checks relate to or could have an impact on the welfare of individuals or the general public. The topics fact-checked were about politics, the environment, public health, social justice issues, economics and other relevant issues, with several fact checks on information relevant to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Only a small number of fact checks appeared to not have relevance to the welfare of individuals or the public - these included fact checks of images that were circulated with incorrect information but that misinformation would not likely have much further significance (one example: https://www.reuters.com/article/factcheck-sphinx-snow-japan/fact-check-photo-shows-snow-covered-model-of-sphinx-in-japan-idUSL1N2M11NT) 


done_all 1.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Reuters News is part of Thomson Reuters Corp - a provider of news and information-based tools to professionals. Thomson Reuters has commercial contracts with governments. Thomson Reuters has not received funding or support from state or political actors.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Thomas Reuters has commercial contracts with governments, but states that it does not receive funding from political actors or bodies.


done_all 1.5 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Not applicable.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Fact check: Trump did not say it was “good” that over 500 children at the border had lost their parents: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-debate-trump-good-immigrati-idUSKBN27816M  
This claim, critical of Donald Trump, was made following a presidential debate. But close review of the original recording of the broadcast, in slow motion and factoring in non-verbal cues, confirmed that the seemingly callous remark was not said by Trump.

Fact check: Biden was quoting Pope Francis in edited clip shared by Trump campaign: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheckbiden-pope-idUSKBN27D28M
This video, shared during US presidential campaigning, was determined by Reuters to be authentic after locating the source footage. However, review of the footage revealed the edit had lost the detail that Biden was quoting speech.

Fact check: Trump “Mother’s Day tradition” video voiced-over by comedian: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-mothers-day-voiceover/fact-check-trump-mothers-day-tradition-video-voiced-over-by-comedian-idUSKCN24E238
This video, which used an impersonator, gained virality on Twitter. Some understood the video to be satirical, but it was evident that many others believed it to be authentic. As with other doctored videos, Reuters identified the unmodified source footage and confirmed the source of the audio impersonation that was edited in to the clip.

Fact check: Video shared on social media is edited version of Joe Biden’s appearance on The View: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-biden-theview-idUSKBN2322U4
This video was uploaded on various social networks and generated responses which suggested users had not realized the footage had been deceptively edited. Reuters identified the source footage and using timecodes, identified which sections had been removed and reordered from the original.

Fact check: Racist chants in video are not from far-right protesters in London: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-protest-chants/fact-check-racist-chants-in-video-are-not-from-far-right-protesters-in-london-idUSKBN23M2UP
This video was shared thousands of times by people who expressed anger at counter protests in London in response to Black Lives Matter protests. Using reverse keyframe search, Reuters quickly established that the video was several years old.

Fact check: Man asking white woman to kneel and apologize is not a representative of Black Lives Matter: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-blm-woman-knee-idUSKBN23B359
The video was shared thousands of times, often with critical remarks directed at the BLM movement. Through reverse image search and internet research, Reuters found the viral video was from a 2-hour YouTube video. The creator of the video confirmed to Reuters he was not from BLM.

Fact check: British politician David Lammy did not write an article headlined: “It will never be okay to be white on our watch”: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-lammy-headline-idUSKBN2492XQ
This false claim against a Labour MP used a fake headline generator familiar to the Reuters Fact Check Team, a conclusion confirmed by the absence of the headline in question in any internet archives and grammatical errors.

Fact check: A satire site invented a Boris Johnson quote about clearing the Scottish Highlands: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-highlands-idUSKBN2AG2KA
This false claim against the British Prime Minister (a Conservative) was traced back to its earliest appearance, which was a site now clearly marked as being satire.

Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines in the UK have been tested and authorised for use: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-vaccine-testing-idUSKBN2AE0QS
Reuters has dealt with much vaccine-related content amid the pandemic, often presented in the form of long videos. Reuters reviews videos, transcribes key points and assesses what may be checked. In order to be able to respond to potentially harmful misinformation, this often means focusing on claims that are provably false – in this case that the COVID-19 vaccines available in the country applicable to the claim are untested. Reuters presented openly available evidence in the form of vaccine trial reports to counter this claim.

Fact check: Scientists do not yet know whether the COVID-19 vaccine reduces transmission of the virus: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-transmission-idUSKBN29N1UH
While many claims tackled by Reuters present anti-vaccination arguments, this check acknowledged a limitation of COVID-19 vaccination – namely that there is insufficient research to conclude that it will prevent transmission of the virus.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters demonstrates a non-partisan commitment to fact checking and their examples illustrate an application of using the same standards regardless of the political or social implications of the claim being true or untrue. They avoid using partisan language and do not appear to favor any one side in an issue.

In the assessor's selection of 10 more random fact checks, she found that the same standards were applied and that Reuters demonstrates their non-partisanship. Fact checks ranged from analyzing negative claims about conservative groups in the US like the Conservative Political Action Conference (Mar 4, 2021) and negative claims about Democrat politicians like Joe Biden (Mar 16, 2021). In total, it does seem that Reuters News fact checks more claims that are negative toward Democrats and Democratic policies, but this does not merit much surprise given the recent election and the reaction among conservatives who have been shown to share more misinformation.


done_all 2.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters Fact Check is an evidence-driven project that takes a fair approach to fact-checking all sides of the political spectrum. They offer a clear set of criteria or how claims are selected. They note that they "actively seek out groups and accounts that represent opposing viewpoints and apply the same standards of assessment to all content"


done_all 2.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The assessor did not observe any instances where the fact checks required a disclosure of a conflict of interest for sources that could influence the accuracy of evidence. The assessor also did not observe any instances where Reuters had to disclose commercial relationships that it has that might shape how the public sees the validity of the fact checks.


done_all 2.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

After a review of social media accounts, Reuters does not exhibit any political preferences online and is a neutral purveyor of information.


done_all 2.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters offers a clear statement on the non-partisanship for staff - they write: "Displays of political affiliation or support for partisan causes have no place in our newsrooms. No member of editorial, whether a journalist or support worker, may wear campaign buttons, badges or items of clothing bearing political slogans on the job, nor bring posters, pamphlets and other political material to the workplace to distribute or display."


Reuters ensures its organization meets this criteria through what they call The Trust Principle where they note they will not police their staff but expect this standard of behavior. Staff may be relocated or given other duties if they are found to not comply.


done_all 2.5 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The sample of Reuters fact checks shows that the project is intentional and thorough in providing evidence and relevant links when available. In some fact checks, they will link to multiple sources that are sharing a claim (often with links listed as "here, here, and here") and then will offer direct evidence to support their evaluation of it.


done_all 3.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters uses primary sources in most cases in their fact checks - often this involves evaluating a video or image, verifying the context of a quotation, or returning to an original news story or speech to match the claim against the original source. In cases where secondary sources are used, as with the following example, multiple secondary sources are used. It does not seem likely that a primary source would be accessible in cases like this so the choice to use secondary sources in the few cases that they do seems valid (example: https://www.reuters.com/article/factcheck-pope-mislabeledphoto/fact-check-mislabeled-photo-shows-pope-benedict-not-pope-francis-idUSL1N2LF1PF). In most cases in the sample of fact checks, Reuters did not reach out to the person or organization alleged to have made a claim, but the cases all seem to not require it given that original recordings video or audio recordings already existed for verification and evaluation. When need, though, Reuters does contact primary sources like this did in this fact check where they contacted J.L. Cauvin: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-trump-mothers-day-voiceover/fact-check-trump-mothers-day-tradition-video-voiced-over-by-comedian-idUSKCN24E238 or in this example where they verified someone's online claim that they created fake content: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-blm-woman-knee-idUSKBN23B359. 


done_all 3.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters is thorough in finding evidence to support their evaluation of claims. In the fact checks the assessor analyzed, there was always more than one source used to evaluate a claim.


done_all 3.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The assessor did not come across any instances of Reuters needing to disclose relevant interests of its sources.


done_all 3.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Reuters Fact Check is the fact-checking unit of Reuters News. All fact checks are therefore published on the Reuters News website, Reuters.com, and a link to Reuters Fact Check is visible on the Reuters.com homepage.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The relationship between Reuters Fact Check and Reuters News is clearly stated on the site.


done_all 4.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

This information is carried on the footer of the Reuters.com website: "Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV." It includes a link to the Thomson Reuters home page (https://www.thomsonreuters.com/en.html) from which visitors can access the latest Annual Report, which contains extensive information about the company. 

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The statement on ownership is clear and accessible.


done_all 4.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The Editorial Leadership team at Reuters is listed here: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-reuters-editorial-leadership-idUSKBN1KE2SD

Editorial control of Reuters Fact Check is explained here: https://www.reuters.com/fact-check/about 

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Editorial leadership and control are explicitly described and people are fully identified on the site.


done_all 4.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Biographies of the Editorial Leadership team at Reuters can be accessed here: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-reuters-editorial-leadership-idUSKBN1KE2SD

The biography of Hazel Baker, who leads Reuters Fact Check, can be seen here: https://www.reuters.com/fact-check/about

Reuters does not include bylines or further biographies of the Reuters Fact Check team for reasons of their personal security.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Professional biographies are available and easy to find.


done_all 4.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

This information is found here: https://www.reuters.com/fact-check/about

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Users can easily find information on how to communicate with the editorial team and are provided guidelines for suggestions, disputes, and feedback.


done_all 4.5 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters clearly explains their methodology for selecting, researching, writing and publishing their fact checks. They clearly explain their criteria for selecting claims and then offer details on how they research the origins of claims and their evaluation process.


done_all 5.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters offers two criteria in their claim selection criteria that address reach of claims - they are here:

"Reach: how far has the claim travelled? We examine the level of interactions on individual posts, as well as the visibility of the claim across different platforms.

Potential reach: is the information likely to be shared further? We examine how quickly the post is generating interaction and consider whether it may be repeated by others."


done_all 5.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

In the sample of fact checks, Reuters typically outlines what the claim is, where it is circulated, where it is from (if available) and evidence of comments from people online supporting or perpetuating the claim. It will typically explain what is being offered as evidence of a claim as well - for example, in a fact check of a claim about Joe Biden on The View, they will describe what quotations or clips are used as evidence - and then go on to explain how their research shows that these clips are edited or out of context.


done_all 5.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

In each of the fact checks in the sample, Reuters appears to apply the same standards of evaluation across claims from different sources and political ends of the spectrum. For example, their evaluation of claims that would serve as ammunition against both Trump and Biden are all held up to scrutiny in the same way by analyzing, in many cases, how quotations or video clips have been altered or taken out of context. The offer a similar quality of evidence to substantiate their evaluation of claims across political divides as well.


done_all 5.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

In many cases, Reuters is analyzing viral social media claims which can often be hard to trace back to an original author. They will offer multiple links to posts or outlets that appear to be amplifying particular claims to show a claim's reach. And in cases where information can be verified by an individual - as in the example below - Reuters contacts those individuals, often to verify what they have already said online.

https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-blm-woman-knee-idUSKBN23B359


done_all 5.5 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Reuters Fact Check explains on its about page (https://www.reuters.com/fact-check/about) that readers are invited to send in suggestions, disputes and general feedback. We have written the following:

Suggestions: please send a link to the relevant social media post(s). Reuters is only able to check claims presented as facts, rather than expressions of opinion, and we look for topics which are relevant to the general public. Claims that include information from anonymous sources may be impossible for us to tackle. We may not be able to reply to every email with suggestions, but we value your input.

Disputes: if you have read one of our fact-checks and you think it is inaccurate, please get in touch as soon as possible, writing in the subject line “dispute”. You should summarize why you think our fact check is inaccurate, and include links to supporting evidence if possible.

Feedback: you are welcome to contact us using the email above if you have any other questions or comments regarding our work.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters Fact Check provides a clear system for readers and explains the system by which readers can communicate with the project.


done_all 5.6 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The corrections policy is clear and the page is easily accessible.


done_all 6.1 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters Fact Check offers a clear explanation of what it covers - anything relevant to the general public - and how it deals with mistakes that require revision. In cases where the revision is substantive, an advisory line will be placed in the article to notify readers of the change. 


done_all 6.2 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

Reuters Fact Check has openly corrected and updated checks whenever necessary over the past 12 months. Often this has been in response to useful input from readers, who have provided additional information or context, spotted mistakes or asked for further information about aspects they feel we may have missed.

Example 1 (correction)
Fact check: Inaccurate claims about salaries for U.S. presidents in retirement, Congress members, army soldiers and senior citizens (https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-inaccurate-salaries-pres-co-idUSKCN2561QY). Following publication, a reader with military experience wrote in to point out that our description of army rankings was inaccurate. We reexamined our source, a page on the US Army website, and accepted that the page in question did not claim to be an exhaustive list of ranks, as we had initially understood. This information meant our average salary calculation was not correct, so we removed that figure and asked for a correct figure from the US Army, which to date has not been provided. This error did not change the conclusion of the check.

Example 2 (update):
Fact check: Democratic Texas Rep. Terry Meza wants to amend ‘Castle doctrine’, not repeal it; posts feature satirical quotes (https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-terry-meza-castle-doctrine-idUSKBN28L1ZB).Following publication of this check, some readers told Reuters they did not accept Meza's explanation that her bill would amend the law in question, rather than repealing it. Reuters accepted that further supporting evidence was required rather than accepting Meza's explanation alone, and consulted legal experts on exactly this point, whose responses were added to the check. The verdict of the check was unchanged.

Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters Fact Check clearly implements its corrections policy and offers examples that shows how they consider and evaluate corrections requests and implement those changes as needed. Other examples can be found on their site, too.


done_all 6.3 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

The links to IFCN pages are available and clearly stated.


done_all 6.4 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.

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.

Reuters
05-Mar-2021 (7 months ago) Updated: 7 months ago

The Reuters Journalism Handbook which holds this policy is currently offline due to website changes, but will soon be reinstated. The corrections policy is as follows:

GENERAL PRINCIPLES

Reuters is totally honest about errors. We rectify them promptly and clearly. We do not disguise or bury mistakes in subsequent updates or stories.

Many corrections can be prevented by checking simple things: the day of the week, proper names and figures, for example. For a list of checks see Avoiding Errors.

Reuters recognises three classes of errors and has set up three separate procedures to deal with them.

CORRECTED - Corrections are necessary whenever a substantive, factual error appears in a story or table. Such errors alter the meaning or significance of the story or undermine its credibility. Stories merit corrections, for example, when they contain a wrong RICs (Reuters Instrument Code) because the mistake links the news to the wrong company. Errors involving numbers and proper names merit corrections. See the appendix for more examples.

REFILE - Refiles allow Reuters to recognise and correct minor errors in stories without unnecessarily alarming readers. Such minor errors in general would have no bearing on any investment decision or understanding of the news, nor would they detract from a story’s credibility. Stories usually merit refiles to fix spelling, typos, dropped words or duplicated words. If in doubt, use the CORRECTED procedure. See the appendix for more examples.

WITHDRAWAL- The so-called "kill" is reserved for stories that are totally wrong or so fundamentally flawed that a conventional correction is impossible. Desk heads in consultation with specialist editors or bureau chiefs decide whether to kill a story or correct it.

REPEAT - A Repeat is NOT a correction. Repeats are reserved for stories that have previously appeared on a Reuters news service and do not contain errors. A story is repeated exactly as it first appeared. If the headline or text has been changed for any reason, then it is not a repeat, and the proper story format needs to be used, such as correction, refile or an update. Repeats (or updates) should never be used to overwrite mistakes or inaccuracies. A story should usually only be repeated if it needs to be distributed more widely to extra product codes.

Corrections, Refiles, or Withdrawals can be written by the relevant reporter, bureau chief or specialist editor but must be published through a regional editing desk and not "direct injected" or self published even if the original was directly injected by the bureau.

When correcting errors that first occurred in an earlier update of a series, you must note that the error first occurred in a particular numbered update. If you have a further update after a CORRECTED story, it should carry a new USN and should NOT replace the corrected story. This means the correction will remain visible on the screens. For example, if an UPDATE 4 was corrected, UPDATE 5 would carry a new USN to ensure that clients continued to see the story with the headline tag CORRECTED-UPDATE 4.

Trashlines or advisory lines at the top of the text are mandatory for all withdrawals, corrections, refiles and repeats. The trashline should say exactly why a story is being withdrawn, corrected, refiled or repeated. All trashlines on refiles and corrections must include the word “corrects" or "correcting". Trashlines serve the interests of transparency and are required to route our stories properly to some customers. They are technical as well as editorial tools.

CORRECTING ALERTS

ALERT(S):

Find the Alert using Lynx Search and select the alert in a Lynx basket by clicking on it, then click on the button "Correct Chain" in the menu bar or right click on the headline and select

"Correct Chain" in the menu bar.

Selecting "Chain Correction” calls up a popup box with a series of options, allowing you to correct all the alerts on a new USN or select only one or more of the alerts for correction while repeating the other correct alerts to the same new USN, and automatically removing the original series on the old USN.

Check either the "All" button or the "Custom" button in the Correct Chain box.

If you check the "All" button, then click "Continue" in the bottom right of the box it will open the file, add CORRECTED- and allow you to write your corrected alerts. You can then "Transfer” or “Transfer and Newsbreak” it to your default editing desk if you are a reporter or Publish or “Publish and Newsbreak” it as an editor.

In a series of alerts, clicking the “Custom” button allows you to choose which alert(s) you want to correct, refile or repeat. If you check the "Custom" button, then click on the down arrow next to each alert and select either "Delete", "Correct", "Refile" or "Repeat" for each alert in the chain, then click the "Continue" button in the bottom right of the box which will open the file of alerts and allow you to make your changes.

Note the “Continue” button will not publish anything. It merely allows you to go ahead and write your corrections until you are ready to “Transfer” or “Publish”.

Also note that Lynx is programmed to put a NEW USN on the alerts chain along with message type S (rather than message type A for corrected stories) BUT will remove the old alerts chain with the incorrect alert(s). The old chain may take a couple of minutes to disappear from Eikon and you may need to refresh your news screen.

Reporters should "Transfer" the alerts file to a regional editing desk for editors to “Publish”.

CORRECTING STORIES IN LYNX EDITOR

To correct a published story in Lynx Editor:

Find the headline using Lynx Search and then click on the headline and select the "Correct" button in the menu bar above or right click on the headline and select "Correct" in the drop-down menu.

In the case of a regular story, clicking the "Correct" button will open the story and automatically keep the same USN to replace the old story.

Reporters should write a corrected version of the story and transfer it to a regional editing desk for editing and publishing. Corrections should be checked and published by a regional editing desk. The correction functionality will publish the correction by replacing the original item on the same USN.

NOTE: When updating a story after a correction, use the same procedure as for a regular update. Find the corrected story using Lynx Search, click on the headline and hit the Update button (or right click on the headline and select update in the popup window) and proceed as usual for updates.

Lynx Editor will generate a new USN for the next update after a correction to preserve the correction;

Replace the CORRECTED slug and headline tag with UPDATE x etc;

DO NOT USE the COPY button to produce an update, or correct an update, or update a corrected update as this breaks the reference chain in Lynx Editor history.

WHEN TO CORRECT

RICs -- When the RIC used is not that of the company in the news. If a RIC belongs to no other company and links to a blank data page, the story should be refiled to remove the dead RIC and replace it with an active RIC. DATA - Nearly every error that involves a number requires a correction.

MILLION VS BILLION -- Corrections are necessary with this common error. Also, correct when the word "billion" or "million" has been dropped.

DATES AND TIME PERIODS -- Wrong dates, months or years in the text. Excludes dates in datelines and days of the week in the first paragraph, which often can be addressed with a refile unless the meaning changes. For example, we would correct: XYZ Co acquired EFG Co. in 1997, not 1897, as stated in paragraph 5.

QUOTES -- Any error in a quote that changes the meaning of the sentence. It is unacceptable to drop the quote from an update instead of issuing a correction. If a quote contains an extra word or two or is missing a word, issue a refile unless the meaning changes.

PRICES -- It is unacceptable to issue an update rather than a correction when the wrong price for a stock, bond or other asset is published (unless the price changed incrementally while the story was being filed.) Also correct mistakes in the direction of any price changes, such as when the story mistakenly says a stock rose instead of fell.

BACKGROUND -- Even though background information may not change the meaning of the story or its trading impact, it often adds to the credibility, and thus merits a correction when it is wrong.

PROPER NAMES -- Names of people, places, companies and organisations should be corrected when a misspelling creates confusion or when an erroneous name has been substituted. For example: The name President Jeb Bush was inadvertently used in the first sentence instead of his brother George W. Use a refile to correct obvious typos in proper names. For example, President Georeg Bush. The trashline would read: Refiles to correct spelling of George in first paragraph.

GENERAL CONTENT -- Descriptions, analyses or explanations that are erroneous should be corrected even if republished from a previous story or if they are not of primary importance. For example, an advisory line might read: The second paragraph erroneously described XYZ Co as the largest widget maker in the world. XYZ Co is the second largest behind QRS Corp.

DROPPED WORD -- When the missing word changes the meaning of a sentence, a correction is necessary. For example, "He was found guilty," instead of "He was found not guilty." Otherwise, use refile to add dropped words or delete extraneous ones.

TIME REFERENCES -- Corrections of time references should carry advisory lines that read: Corrects month measured by housing data to June instead of July.

OFFICIAL CORRECTIONS

Special provisions are made for official corrections - those from a source, over which Reuters has no control. This is to make clear to subscribers where the responsibility for the mistake lies.

We only describe a correction as OFFICIAL if a SOURCE has acknowledged that the original information was wrong. If in doubt, refer to your regional editing desk. The only change from the standard correction format is to manually add the word (OFFICIAL) followed by a hyphen to the Alert and the headline of the Newsbreak. The slug takes (CORRECTED, OFFICIAL).

How to issue an official correction to a snap

Choose the CORRECT option as above and type - (OFFICIAL) in the headline.

REFILES

Find the story using Lynx Search, select it by placing your cursor on the headline and hit the Refile button, or right click and select REFILE.

NOTE: When updating a story after a REFILE, use the same procedure as a normal update. Find the refiled story using Lynx Search, click on the headline and hit the Update button (or right click on the headline and select update in the popup window) and proceed as usual for updates.

DO NOT USE the COPY button to produce an update, or correct an update, or update a corrected update as this breaks the reference chain in Lynx Editor history.

WHEN TO REFILE

Use refile to handle the following types of mistakes that would have no bearing on a trading decision or would not distort the meaning of a story or any passage within it. Sample advisory lines are also provided.

RICS -- Refile stories that contain wrong RICS only when the symbol used belongs to no other company and links to a blank data page. The trashline would read: Refiles to correct inactive stock symbol in paragraph 4. If a RIC belonging to another company is mistakenly used, a correction is required. The trashline would read: Corrects stock symbol in paragraph 3 to ABC.N from ABC.O.

DATELINE -- Errors in datelines, including the location and date, unless either would have an important bearing on the meaning of the story e.g. Corrects dateline from FRANKFURT to Brussels or Corrects dateline to Aug 5 from Aug 4

DAY OF THE WEEK -- When the wrong day of the week appears in the lead sentence, unless the mistake would distort the significance of the news or applies to a day in the future e.g. Corrects day in first paragraph to Tuesday from Monday.

TIME CONVERSIONS -- Simple time conversions when the time being converted is correct, e.g. Corrects time in paragraph 3 to 1350 GMT from 1550 GMT.

SPELLING -- For typographical errors of common words, or most spelling mistakes in proper names, e.g. Fixes typo in 10th paragraph or Corrects spelling of Greenspan in final paragraph.

NAMES -- A story that says "President Bush" on first reference or President Goerge Bush, for example, should be refiled with President George W. Bush. The trashline would be: Refiles to correct name in paragraph 2 to President George W. Bush.

AGES -- Use REFILE for correcting the age of an individual, unless the mistake distorts the meaning of the story. The trashline would read: Refiles to correct age in paragraph 6 to 53 years old.

TITLES -- Use REFILE to correct minor mistakes in titles, such as senior vice president instead of vice president. The trashline would read: Refiles to correct title in paragraph 2 to chief financial officer. But use CORRECTED for errors that could have bigger ramifications, such as chief financial officer instead of chief executive. If there is any question, the desk head will make the decision on REFILE vs CORRECTED.

ADDS WORD -- To insert dropped words, unless the dropped word distorts the meaning of the sentence (such as the word "not") e.g. Corrects to add dropped word executive in paragraph 10. Other examples that would require corrections are words like million or percent when dropping them raises the possibility that a reader may misinterpret a number.

DELETES WORD -- To remove unnecessary words unless the presence of the word distorted the meaning of the sentence. E.g. Corrects to delete extraneous word the in paragraph two.

KILLS OR WITHDRAWALS

If a story contains multiple errors, it may need to be WITHDRAWN, and not just CORRECTED.

Killing or withdrawing a story is a serious situation. No text story should be withdrawn by a reporter without first consulting the bureau chief or specialist editor, and the head of the regional desk.

Withdrawn stories should be replaced if the issues that caused them to be killed can be resolved. The withdrawal should state whether or not a replacement will be published (and when).

If the story is sensitive, or in cases where it is difficult to decide if a withdrawal or correction is more appropriate, approval must be sought from the regional editor or managing editor for news. Those editors, in turn, may escalate the issue to the global ethics and standards editor.

If the withdrawal relates to visual or digital issues, the global head of visuals or the executive editor of digital will give final approval, consulting the global ethics and standards editor as needed.

PROCEDURE

First, find the story in a Publish basket or via a Lynx Editor Search.

Right click on the headline and select the WITHDRAW option.

A popup window will open with a preformatted withdrawal ADVISORY containing the slug, the ADVISORY headline tag, the same USN and message type R in the header field.

The text of the advisory will also contain the USN OF THE STORY TO BE WITHDRAWN, the date and the time published in GMT. All you need to do is write the headline and advisory line explaining why the story is withdrawn.

In the text field give reasons for the withdrawal and say whether or not a replacement story will be published. Then PUBLISH the ADVISORY and the story will be withdrawn/deleted from desktop products like Eikon simultaneously.

In addition to these steps, an email must be sent to rcomsupport@thomsonreuterslcom and BLR-Online_Newsroom@thomsonreuters.com telling them what has been done.

This will alert our online desk to withdraw each version of the story from websites and to contact online customers to ask them to remove it.

WITHDRAWING ALERTS

A withdrawal should only be done by editing desks.

However, in the case of market moving economic or market data or company announcements the bureau or reporting team that was the source of the error can publish an interim ADVISORY alert, saying which data or headline was wrong and noting the correct information.

For example:

ADVISORY-AUTOMATED ALERT STATING COUNTRY XX CENTRAL BANK RAISED BENCHMARK INTEREST RATE WAS ISSUED IN ERROR; THERE WAS NO CENTRAL BANK ANNOUNCEMENT

ADVISORY – ALERT ON COUNTRY XX DECEMBER CPI WAS ISSUED IN ERROR; THERE WAS NO MINISTRY OF FINANCE ANNOUNCEMENT

The advisory alert can be created and published either through Lynx Editor (right-click on the original alert in a Publish or Alerting-Tools basket, and use the Add Chained function to prepare and publish the advisory alert), or through Lynx Alerting, if the advisory is for an alert you have just published (use “ctl + shift + p” to recreate the alert, then change the text as needed, and publish).

This advisory should carry the same USN as the original using the S message type (NOT the R message type) and therefore should NOT delete the original. A regional desk must then be informed that the desk can follow up with a proper withdrawal procedure, as described below.

LYNX EDITOR PROCEDURE FOR WITHDRAWING ALERTS:

To withdraw an alert or a chain of alerts, click on one of the alerts in the Publish basket, select CORRECT CHAIN then select ALL and select WITHDRAW and CONTINUE. A new story with a new USN will be created which allows you to explain why the alerts are being withdrawn. Hit PUBLISH and Lynx will automatically delete the original alerts and publish the withdrawal on the new USN.

To withdraw one or more but not all alerts in a chain, you need to use the CORRECT CHAIN function, select CUSTOM, select DELETE for the alerts you wish to withdraw and select REPEAT for the alerts you wish to preserve or REPEAT, then select CONTINUE and PUBLISH. The alerts preserved will be repeated on a NEW USN without the deleted alert(s).

Then go back and do a withdrawal on the chain, as above, giving the USN of the repeated alerts as part of the explanation.

FOR LYNX ALERTING AND FASTWIRE PROCEDCURES

Consult your regional speed editor.

REPEATS

Repeats should always be issued with (REPEAT) at the end of the slug line and RPT- at the front of the headline.

The slug line would read: HEALTH-INSURANCE (REPEAT) The headline would read: RPT-XYZ Co reports first-quarter earnings.

There must be an advisory line above the story text explaining why the story is being repeated.

The advisory line would read, for example: (Repeats to widen distribution)

WHEN TO REPEAT

Stories can be repeated for technical reasons, for example to fix metadata or coding. Initiative stories, such as INSIGHTS, ANALYSIS and SPECIAL REPORTS, can also be repeated to broaden their distribution, such as repeating them at peak Eikon readership periods.

Use repeats in the following situations. Examples of advisory lines are provided.

ADDING CODES AND RICS: The advisory line should read: Repeats to widen distribution

CHANGING SLUGS: The trashline should read: Repeats to change story keyword used by media customers. If we change a slug on a story that has been sent to media, an advisory must be sent to the media codes noting the slug has been changed to/from.

REPEATING TO NEW USN: The trash line should read: Repeats to new story number. Remove media codes from the repeat.

REMOVING STORY ATTACHED TO PREVIOUS UPDATE: The trash line should read: Repeats to remove story attached to bottom of text.

REPEATING TO ATTACH TO ALERTS: The trash line should read: Repeats to attach text to news alerts. Remove any media codes from the repeat.

REPEATING AHEAD OF DATA OR EVENT: The trashline should read: Repeats story published on Monday ahead of data due at (time)

REPEATING FROM A PREVIOUS DAY: The trashline should read: Repeats story first published on Sunday.

EMBARGOES

Minimizing the risk of an embargo break

Bureaus transferring embargoed material to an editing desk reporters must clearly mark it as embargoed in UPPER CASE, either in the COMMENT LINE in Lynx Editor or in the TEXT field of the alert, or story, as well as in the SLUG field of the story.

For example the Comment line should read:

"EMBARGOED FOR RELEASE AT 2301 GMT APRIL 28"

And the slugline should read:

BC-BALDONIA-SOLDIERS (EMBARGOED)

To embargo a story in Lynx Editor:

Open the story in Lynx Editor and click the Set button in the embargo field. Specifiy the date and time for the embargo. The time defaults to GMT. If you wish to set the embargo in the local time on your computer, uncheck Use GMT box. Click the Set button again to save the embargo.

To revise the embargo time, click the Edit button.

To remove the embargo, click the Remove button.

When you have set the embargo, the Publish button will change to an Embargo button. Click the Embargo button to transfer the story to an Embargo basket where the story will be held until the embargo time expires and Lynx Editor will automatically publish the story.

If you are not comfortable with setting the embargo field yourself in Lynx Editor, then clearly mark the alert or story EMBARGOED, using the procedure described above, and transfer it to a regional editing desk basket for the desk to complete the procedure.

Embargo Breaks

If another news service breaks an embargo, contact the source to see if they object to our running the story early. In urgent cases (e.g. when a market is moving) we can override objections and issue the story ahead of time after approval by a senior editor. In non-urgent cases we would normally respect the wishes of the source of the material.

If we decide also to ignore an embargo we must issue an advisory on the following lines to explain the circumstances:

BC-BALDONIA-SOLDIERS (ADVISORY) The BALDONIA CITY story headlined “Baldonian president honours five dead soldiers”, which was embargoed for 2301 GMT April 28, is released for immediate publication. Another news organisation has broken the embargo.

If Reuters breaks an embargo, the material must NOT be deleted. Deleting the content published mistakenly is dishonest and may give unfair advantage to clients who read it and disadvantage those who missed it.

Where appropriate, we should quickly issue an advisory with the same USN but using the J (join or append) message type to add the advisory to the bottom of the story. For example:

ADVISORY – RELEASE OF RURITANIAN TRADE DATA Reuters inadvertently issued an alert and story detailing Ruritanian trade data for June.

Mending fences on embargo breaks

In all cases of embargo breaks the bureau or reporting team must inform: the relevant editors, the organisation supplying the news, and if merited, regulatory authorities such as stock exchanges.

Tell them we have made an honest mistake for which we are sorry; that we are taking steps to make sure such things do not occur again and that we trust future relations with the source will not be jeopardised.

Bureau chiefs should then write a letter to the organisation affected repeating that our policy is to observe embargoes and that we apologise for our error. In most cases, an embargo break requires an incident report to be written.

Files Attached
description Criteria 6.5 .docx (25 KB)
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
10-Apr-2021 (6 months ago) Updated: 6 months ago

Reuters Fact Check did not provide a link, but instead provided the text from the Reuters Journalism Handbook that describes their principles regarding honesty and corrections. While the policy is clear, the submission here does not provide evidence that the fact checking project adheres to the principles in the handbook.


cancel 6.5 marked as Request change by Julie Homchick Crowe.
Julie Homchick Crowe Assessor
20-May-2021 (5 months ago)

Reuters Fact Check did not provide a link, but instead provided the text from the Reuters Journalism Handbook that describes their principles regarding honesty and corrections. While the policy is clear, the submission here does not provide evidence that the fact checking project adheres to the principles in the handbook.


The applicant submitted materials to meet this requested change and is now compliants (5/20/22 - JHC)


done_all 6.5 marked as Compliant by Julie Homchick Crowe.