What does 2022 have in store for journalism?
In this issue of Checklist, we take a look at new initiatives in fact-checking and predictions for journalism in the new year.
Happy new year! We hope that 2022 is a kinder, healthier and happier year to us all. With the first issue of The Checklist in 2022, we have migrated to a new platform; we hope you’ll find the interface easier to navigate. In this issue we also have exciting updates from Meedan, our partners and supporters through the years. We hope you will enjoy this issue as much as we have enjoyed putting this together!
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The latest top stories
Meet VERA, the truth bot! (Meedan)
In November 2021, VERA Files, our Check Global partner in the Philippines launched VERA, the first public misinformation tipline on Viber in the Asia Pacific region. Integrated with Check, Meedan’s platform for verification and annotation, VERA, the truth bot, guides users through the tipline. As the May 2022 presidential election nears in the Philippines, there is more false and misleading information on popular messaging platforms like Viber. This is why VERA Files Fact Check introduced VERA, a bot that can be Viber users’ friend and ally in fighting disinformation and misinformation.
"Our belief is that everybody can and should be a fact checker. By setting up a tipline with features that can guide users, we’re working toward our goal of encouraging readers to practice the habit of verification and empowering them to fact-check." — VERA Files
Misinformation on vaccines, farmers and minorities: India’s fact-checkers had a busy 2021 (Newslaundry)
2021 was a year dominated by the news of farmers protesting at Delhi’s borders, vaccines rolling out in India, a devastating second Covid wave, polls in four states and one union territory, and, internationally, Taliban taking over Afghanistan. It was also a year flooded with misinformation on all of the above.
India is a hotbed of fake news and misinformation, and data shows that it is rising. After scrutinising 9,657 instances of misinformation originating from 138 countries between January 1, 2020 and March 1, 2021, the IFLA Journal found that India produced the largest amount of social media misinformation.
“We have noticed that misinformation tends to be intentional during certain news events like elections, farmer protests, etc. However, sudden news stories – like the chopper crash that killed General Bipin Rawat and other officers – can witness a spurt in misinformation with unrelated videos and images going viral.” — Jency Jacob, Managing editor of BOOM
Predictions for Journalism 2022 (NiemanLab)
Each year, NiemanLab asks some of the smartest people in journalism and media what they think is coming in the next 12 months. Here’s a collection of what Meedanis, our friends and partners had to say.
“The debate about diversity and representation in feminism has been evolving and becoming more and more amplified. We no longer speak of feminism in the singular, but of feminisms, diversities, and pluralities. The understanding of privilege, colorism, and intersectionality are indispensable to ensure a more inclusive 2022.” — Chicas Poderosas
“Direct publishing through conversational platforms offers a mobile-native, highly interactive experience in apps and interfaces that most people are using every day.” — Tom Trewinnard, Fathm
“We’re looking at two long years of ongoing stress, tension, uncertainty and anxiety in our daily lives on top of whatever additional stressors and barriers those of us working in journalism have been facing, with no clear end in sight. As we enter this third year of COVID-19, let’s remember the many facets of care, and let’s remember to extend care to each other.” — An Xiao Mina, Meedan
What’s new at Meedan
Meedan is pleased to welcome Cat Ho on board as our first Director of Business Development and Operations! Cat joins us after consulting with Meedan on business planning. The team appreciated her insights, rigor and conviviality during her time as a consultant, and we’re thrilled to welcome her in a full-time role.
Open positions at Meedan
Meedan is inviting applications for the full-time positions for our work in the North Africa/Western Asia region (NAWA) and in the Philippines. Do share the information widely. Interested applicants may click on the relevant job description page for application instructions.