THE International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) has announced a partnership with Google and YouTube to support the fight against misinformation globally.
A statement on Tuesday from the US-based global body of fact-checkers said the social media platforms are providing the IFCN a $13.2 million grant, which includes a $12 million Global Fact Check Fund primarily for verified signatories to the IFCN’s Code of Principles.
It added that not less than 135 organizations from 65 countries known to promote high standards of transparency and non-partisanships for fact-checkers have been listed to benefit from the grant.
IFCN’s executive director, Baybars Örsek, stated: “The world needs fact-checking more than ever before. This partnership with Google and YouTube infuses financial support to global fact-checkers and is a step in the right direction.”
“And while there’s much work to be done, this partnership has sparked meaningful collaboration and an important step,” he said.
Also commenting, Olivia Ma, Managing Director, Global News Programs and Ecosystem at Google, said: “Combating misinformation is an ongoing global challenge for society. We take seriously our role in helping to fight misinformation by continually investing in products, programs and partnerships that help people access high-quality information.”
“Expanding Google and YouTube’s work with the IFCN means that more independent fact-checkers around the world will have the tools and capacity to help people make informed decisions.”
The statement added that the associated grants distributed through this new fund will support fact-checking organizations at varying stages of their development.
“Dollar amounts will be adjusted to equalize the purchasing power of the fact-checking organizations’ home nation. Details of grant distribution will be announced in 2023.
“In addition to the grants to directly strengthen and expand fact-checking, Google and YouTube will offer supplemental financial support for the IFCN to establish a neutral and independent selection committee; improve the reporting, monitoring and evaluation of the funded fact-check efforts; and expand the capacity of the IFCN to serve the international fact-checking community.
“In addition to providing the financial support, members of the Google and YouTube teams are working with the IFCN community to explore cooperation, analytics and tools that fact-checkers need to fight disinformation on specific platforms, and to expand resources to non-English speaking nations,” it noted.
Örsek added, “Our mission is to be a catalyst for positive change within the global fact-checking community. We are grateful to Google and YouTube for their commitment to bolster fact-checkers in an ever-increasing environment of mis- and disinformation.”
Launched in 2015 at the Poynter Institute, the IFCN brings together the growing community of fact-checkers globally and advocates of factual information in the fight against misinformation.