The European Media and Information Fund has announced the results of its first funding round Boosting Fact-checking Activities in Europe. The Call for Proposals is permanently open and was launched on November 2, 2021. The first cut-off date was March 2, 2022. The ongoing funding round of the Call “Boosting Fact-Checking Activities in Europe” is open until 30 June 2022.
Seven projects were approved on May 31, 2022 with a total funding of €418,635.59. The successful projects cover topics on climate change, elections, and public health, as well as fact-checking on social media platforms and for radio audiences.
The projects are located across five countries: Latvia, Poland, Bulgaria, Portugal and the UK.
Four projects were approved under the ‘Urgent Actions’ call. They are:
- Quick-reaction-Fact-checking on TikTok and popular social media by Foundation “Counteracting Disinformation” (Poland), addressing the fake content that appears on TikTok and often overlaps with that on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube, The project will create a specialised team of experts to combat disinformation across all these platforms.
- FACTUAL | Fact-Checking Climate Changes by Inevitable and Fundamental, Limited Society (Portugal) will seek to address issues related to misinformation and disinformation regarding matters related to the environment and climate change. It aims to achieve its purpose through fact-checking, as well as through media literacy initiatives, particularly targeting younger audiences.
- Scaled-up fact-checking before Latvian parliamentary elections in October 2022 by the Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism “Re:Baltica” (Latvia) will monitor social networks and fact check debates before the elections. It will verify the outcomes of the previous promises and examine the track record of the main contenders, distributing the findings in a visually attractive format friendly to social networks.
- Fighting the hybrid war in Latvia by JSC Delfi (Latvia) is aimed at reducing the impact of disinformation campaigns by bringing reliable news and information to target audiences in Latvia and Europe, in order to increase the fact-checking capacity thus contributing to a trustworthy media environment in Europe, reaching new critical audiences (Russian language community and wider Europe).
Under the ‘Scale-Up Projects’ category, the following three projects were successful in securing funding.
- Piloting #Radio-FACT-Checks for a More Trustworthy Media Landscape (#FACT) by European Institute Foundation (Bulgaria) with its partner who will jointly build capacity of local-level fact-checkers and rigorously produce fact-checked content, supported by new tech tools. Through thematic radio rubrics, diverse audiences – including vulnerable groups – will get engaged in on-air and online conversations on disinformation and malign foreign narratives.
- Better information for better health – clinical fact-checker by Full Fact (UK) is adding a health specialist to Full Fact’s fact-checking team to improve the combat against health misinformation in the UK. Over the next year, the new fact-checker will monitor and fact-check claims related to clinical health and inform targeted interventions to counter dangerous claims.
- Scale-up of fact-checking activity of OKO.Press online portal by Foundation Centre for Civic Monitoring OKO (Poland) will expand fact-checking activities of OKO.press, an independent Polish civic medium. The project aims at providing the audience with regular weekly publications by implementing new formats: cross-sectional publications and tools for fact-checking. This, along with the development of technological facilities, will support audience development and engagement.