The Dispatch

Organization: The Dispatch
Applicant: Rachael Larimore
Assessor: Margot Susca

Background

I addressed a concern with the initial application noting that the staff of The Dispatch overlapped with the staff of The Dispatch Fact Check. That issue has been addressed by the applicant, and I am satisfied that it meets the criteria in all areas. 

Assessment Conclusion

The applicant, in my opinion, satisfies all criteria. 

on 27-Apr-2020 (1 month ago)

Margot Susca assesses application as Compliant

A short summary in native publishing language

The Dispatch Fact Check publishes fact checks from both sides of the aisle and on matters of public health. It does so in a way that does favor one political position or party with methodology that is clear and concise, even distilling peer-reviewed research to address claims. 

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

The Dispatch Fact Check is a distinct project of The Dispatch. Fact checks are published at their own unique sub domain: https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/

The content published via https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/ is promoted at https://thedispatch.com/ and in social media and email promotions for The Dispatch. 

Dispatch Media, Inc. was founded as TSHGSH and submitted paperwork to the state of Delaware on October 2, 2019. I'm attaching three documents: The certificate of corporation for TSHGH from the state of Delaware from July 2019, the documentation approving the name change, and the IRS letter confirming that TSGSGH was assigned an Employer Identification number.

Files Attached
picture_as_pdf TSHGSH, INC EIN Conf... (16 KB) picture_as_pdf Dispatch Media Inc.-... (88 KB) picture_as_pdf Cert of Inc - DE SOS... (751 KB)
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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?

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 2 months ago

1. When and why was your fact-checking operation started?
We launched our the Dispatch Fact Check operation on Nov. 22, 2019. The Dispatch itself launched in October 2019 and we launched factcheck.thedispatch.com as soon as we were able to devote resources to the project. We have several reasons for launching. First is that the stated mission of The Dispatch is to provide "fact-based reporting and commentary on politics, policy and culture." Our larger site does provide opinion and analysis, but we strive to publish such pieces by experts on a given topic or by writers who have researched and reported the topics they are analyzing. 


The Dispatch Fact Check is a natural extension of that. We recognize that there is a significant amount of biased reporting, misinformation, and outright disinformation that is published. Politicians make false statements, and those statements are amplified by their supporters. Thanks to social media, entire "fake news" operations have sprung up and can promote their work to unassuming consumers of news. At The Dispatch, we are upfront and forthright about our work being "informed by conservative principles." Our hope is that because our audience is aware of our ideology, and our commitment to reporting, that we can influence those on the right to believe it when we point out that their favored politicians or news sources commit factual errors, and also vice versa: that the politicians and news sources with whom they tend to disagree are telling the truth if we say so. We will accomplish that goal by being non-ideological in our fact checking, seeking a balance in fact checking claims by figures of all backgrounds.

2. Here are the names and roles of the people who work on the Dispatch Fact Check

* Declan Garvey is a reporter at The Dispatch, where he contributes to the daily Morning Dispatch newsletter and the Dispatch Fact Check while also covering the 2020 campaign, Congress, and more. Before joining The Dispatch, Declan was a senior associate at Hamilton Place Strategies, a public affairs firm in Washington, D.C. Originally from the Chicago area, Declan graduated from Harvard University in 2017 with a degree in history.

* Alec Dent is a fact checker for The Dispatch. He is a graduate of the Hussman School of Journalism and Media at UNC Chapel Hill, and previously worked for the UNC Program for Public Discourse.

* Rachael Larimore is the managing editor of The Dispatch. She edits Dispatch Fact Check stories.

* Steve Hayes is the co-founder, CEO, and editor of The Dispatch. Previously he was the editor-in-chief of The Weekly Standard. He edits Dispatch Fact Check stories.

3. What different activities does your organization carry out?

The Dispatch Fact Check will publish nothing but fact checks, which are archived here: https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/. In terms of the larger organization: Dispatch Media publishes articles, newsletters, and podcasts. There are plans to hold events such as live podcast tapings, meet-and-greets with Dispatch staffers for paying subscribers, and even weekend retreats with prominent speakers. 

4. What are the goals of your fact-checking operation over the coming year?

One goal we have is to participate in Facebook's fact-checking operation. But speaking from an editorial point of view, our two big focuses right now are correcting misinformation on the coronavirus pandemic and evaluating statements pertaining to the 2020 presidential campaign. We will not shy away from other topics, be it other political topics, statements from business leaders, or cultural stories. Our general goals are to do 3-5 fact checks a week, to report on Democrats as often as we do Republicans, and to provide our readers with in-depth reporting in the process.    


Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

This has been updated to reflect my initial concerns about cross-over between Dispatch staff and Dispatch Fact Check staff. 

Files Attached
Dispatch_Staff.png (473 KB)
done_all 1.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

Criteria 1.3
Proof you meet criteria
Please attach a spreadsheet of links for the fact checks you published in the three months prior to the date of application showing that you have checked at least 13 claims in that time

Note: To enable assessment of Criteria 1.4 the spreadsheet should identify the lead topic covered in each fact check published over the three months prior to the date of application, and whether you consider this a ‘public interest’ issue that ‘relate to or could have an impact on the welfare or well-being of individuals, the general public or society’. (See notes in Guidelines for Application on how to complete this)

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

We filled out this application over the course of several days. We published two fact checks in that time, which means the first spreadsheet I uploaded is incomplete. I could not figure out how to delete the first when I added the second, updated one. I apologize for the confusion but wanted to include our whole list.

Files Attached
insert_drive_file Dispatch Fact Check... (7 KB) insert_drive_file Dispatch Fact Check... (7 KB)
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

The Dispatch Fact Check does fact checks in a number of areas. Its spreadsheet (and its website shows, too) notes these are in the areas of public health, politics, and business. Much of the work on the site in the last month has focused on COVID-19 claims. Other fact checks, including one from headlined "Did MSNBC Report That the Democratic Party ‘Interfered in the Primaries to Stop’ Sanders?" address media/social media. 


done_all 1.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

The Dispatch has no relationship with with any state, politician, or political party. We receive no funding or support from any local, state, or political actors.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1.5 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 1.6 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Summary: it's very important to us that our fact checks not only be accurate but free from bias. We achieve that by looking at other qualities to a claim: What is the speaker's reach? How damaging is the claim if it's false? Are we focused too much on any one person or topic? We think the examples we've chosen show that we seek the truth regardless of the ideology of the person accused of making a false claim. We have cited Joe Biden for making misstatements, and we've called out false claims against him. We have called out misstatements by Donald Trump, but also called out false statements against him. To cite one example, we looked into a claim by Bernie Sanders that the divisive nature of his supporters could be blamed on Russian interference in the election. While we had many examples of real live Bernie supporters harassing other candidates' supporters, we also shared reporting from U.S. intelligence agencies that they had uncovered Russian interference, to ensure our readers had the full picture. And we have done fact checks that have nothing to do with politics at all.

The 10 fact checks are listed in the spreadsheet below. 

Files Attached
description 10 fact checks IFCN.... (7 KB)
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. I note the first fact check listed on its website dates to November 2019, so there is not a full year's worth of material. 

These fact checks from November onward offer a range of political viewpoints, offering perspectives on claims by Joe Biden, Devin Nunes, Hillary Clinton and Nikki Haley, among others. Other fact checks include topics including President Trump's stake in a company that allegedly profits from the sale of Hydroxychloroquine to others about a claim Andrew Cuomo had rejected purchasing thousands of ventilators in 2015.

As an example of its fact-checking explanation is included here. The Devin Nunes fact check from March 17 states: "It is a good thing that Rep. Nunes is now offering guidance that corresponds with advice given by public health professionals, but his suggestion that he was always referring to drive-thru and takeout is inaccurate."

Another, posted March 25, in reference to the Cuomo-ventilator topic above, uses and links to a peer-reviewed medical study thus finding that a claim made by Trump on Fox News on the subject "contained an element of truth, but misrepresented aspects." This also speaks to the area below related to compliance and use of sources; peer-reviewed sources being used is a good barometer of its compliance in this area. 

Going back to its website beyond those links provided in the spreadsheet show other fact checks across the political spectrum. A November 2019 fact check--I believe this was its first--has the headline: "Is Ukraine the 'Largest Single Donor to the Clinton Foundation'?" The answer: "In a word, no."



done_all 2.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

We are including a link but we'd like to use this space to elaborate on how we avoid "unduly concentrating on any one side":

Our staffers are already plugged into the news of the day on their quest to prepare our newsletters and research their articles. We receive news from Google alerts, by checking Twitter, by subscribing to newsletters from a variety of newspapers and online publications. We also invite our readers to submit claims. As we consider which stories to fact check, we look at it like we would other news judgment decisions: How important is the potential error of fact? How many people might affected? Have we reported out claims on a similar topic already? There are times when one "side" of the political spectrum is more in the news than others, such as during impeachment, or during the Democratic presidential primary. We seek to strike balance in a few ways when that happens. If we've done a couple of fact checks on a single topic, can we establish that some of the claims are true and some false? If one story is dominating our news decisions too much, is there another story we should be seeking out?

Sometimes we come across claims that are worthy of checking but are made by anonymous or low-profile accounts on social media. We understand the risk of bringing too much attention to non-public figures. But if someone prominent has cited their claim or mentioned it in their own tweet and made it go viral, we may consider that claim worthy.

We also understand that it's not always accurate or necessarily in the public interest to try to force a perfect balance. There may be times when one "side" is subjected to a higher percentage of our fact checks because there are relevant people making a disproportionate amount of false claims. If you'll look at our fact checks from early March, for example, you will notice that they seem to skew heavily toward conservatives making false statements that downplayed the threat of coronavirus. For the sake of public safety, we chose to call out those bad examples in an attempt to reduce their spread. d


https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/about

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 2.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 2.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 2.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 2.5 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 3.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 3.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 3.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 3.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

The Dispatch Fact Check is a distinct project of The Dispatch. Fact checks are published at their own unique sub domain: https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/

The content published via https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/ is promoted at https://thedispatch.com/ and in social media and email promotions for The Dispatch. 

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 4.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 4.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 

Files Attached
Dispatch_Site_Staff.... (831 KB)
done_all 4.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 4.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

I emailed the publicly-facing email address, and I received a response with a few minutes. A screen shot of my original email is attached.  

Files Attached
Screen Shot 2020-04-... (118 KB)
done_all 4.5 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. The methodology is clear across its fact checks, and the sources used to confirm/debunk items are often hyperlinked. 

An example includes a Jan. 8 fact check headlined: "Are Democratic Leaders and Presidential Candidates ‘Mourning’ Qassem Suleimani’s Death?" (Answer: "No, they are not.")

The fact check cites and links to Joe Biden's statement ran in full by CBS News' website in the sentence "In fact, Joe Biden went out of his way to explicitly point out that 'no American will mourn Qassem Soleimani’s passing.'" 

Other fact checks link to peer-reviewed studies. 


done_all 5.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 5.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 5.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 5.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 5.5 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

We put a note at the bottom of every fact check inviting readers to email us with suggestions, and we have the following text on our "about" page:

If you see a story, a tweet, a Facebook post, or any claim by a public figure that you think we should investigate, please send mail to factcheck@thedispatch.com. We cannot promise to investigate every claim we receive, but we will read every mail and consider it as part of our selection process.

https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/about

https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/p/did-a-british-scientist-retract-his

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. This would be clear to any person using the site. 


done_all 5.6 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago
Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. Its policy states: "If there is a minor error within one of our fact checks--spelling errors, math, misattributions of quotes--we will follow the same process. If there is a major error that causes us to reassess our conclusion, we will put an editor’s note at the top explaining the error and clarifying that changes may have been made throughout to support the new conclusion." Its corrections page also notes it will correct errors across platforms. 


done_all 6.1 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 6.2 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

We have been fortunate that in the course of publishing since October, The Dispatch has had only minor errors of fact to correct: spelling a subject's name wrong or misstating someone's age, misidentifying the author of a particular Federalist paper, referring to a former politician as a current officeholder. We strive not to make mistakes, of course, and we take even minor correction requests seriously and deal with them promptly. Often we discover the mistakes in-house quickly after publication, and most of our corrections, which we date, occur on the same day or within a day of publication.

https://thedispatch.com/p/new-hampshire-and-the-art-of-the

https://thedispatch.com/p/books-to-read-if-youre-tired-of-hearing

At the time of submission of this application, we had not had to run any corrections on a fact check. We did post an editor's note on a piece, and I want to share it as an example of our transparency. During the course of editing the piece, we accidentally removed a paragraph that quoted an authoritative source on the subject of the fact check. We thought it added value for our readers so we wanted to include it, but we didn't want to make a "stealth edit" so we appended the note.

https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/p/did-president-trump-ban-travel-to


Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Both of these corrections are on articles from The Dispatch, not The Dispatch Fact Check. The applicant states this is due to not having to have run any corrections in the months it has been operating. It does show an example of an editor's note explaining how a paragraph was removed and then re-instated, so this seems fair for transparency's sake that it has a policy and would adhere to it. 


done_all 6.3 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

They are not an existing signatory, which is why I am marking this as Compliant. 


done_all 6.4 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.

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.

The Dispatch
01-Apr-2020 (2 months ago) Updated: 1 month ago

The Dispatch and The Dispatch Fact Check follow the same corrections policy

https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/p/the-dispatch-corrections-policy

Margot Susca Assessor
16-Apr-2020 (1 month ago) Updated: 1 month ago

Compliant. 


done_all 6.5 marked as Compliant by Margot Susca.