Fake news screwed with our heads in 2016.
Enter Faktist. Four main Norwegian news organizations will join forces to work on a fact-checking project to fight fake news. Public broadcasting company NRK, along with Norway’s biggest commercial broadcaster TV 2, and the two of the largest online news sources by readership in 2016- VG and Dagbladet, will launch Faktisk by summer 2017.
The word Faktisk – which means “actually” or “factually” in Norwegian – aims to present fact-based news and information in Norway. The service will fact-check important topics such as climate change, trending stories on social platforms, international relations, even political debates. It will rank news stories according to how factually correct they are, on a five point scale from “entirely true” to “totally wrong”.
Some key findings of the survey on fake news put together by the Norwegian Media Authority with 1000 participants aged 18 – 80 show that people most often read false information presented as news. The sources mentioned include:
Traditional media: 21%
Search engines: 15%
Alternative news websites: 12%
55% report reading, weekly or more often, news that they consider to be inaccurate.
More findings here.
In Norway, a recent poll showed only 42% of respondents said they trusted news organizations.
Fact checking will be done by people initially although Faktisk is working on a CMS aka content management system that will cut up fact checking into parts that will lead to future use of automation and artificial intelligence efforts.
Faktisk will run on open-source software that allows unlimited access for reuse and distribution of its structure and its content. This is a project worth $1 million USD in investment. There have already been talks with IBM to explore opportunities for Faktisk to be integrated in to Watson, their supercomputer featuring AI and sophisticated analytical software.
The fact-checking initiative bands together otherwise media competitors to work collectively with a mutual, very important goal that will benefit this, and future generations.