Fato ou Fake
Overview of this campaign
The project pooled resources from eight different newsrooms, with various kinds of expertises. In total, we had 80 journalists full-time dedicated to fact-checking, and hundreds others in part-time colaboration. We used four main ways to monitor and track fake news during the elections – one of the main challenges was to monitor fake news spread through WhatsApp, the main vehicle for false news in Brazil, so the journalists joined more than 200 highly influential groups more propense to spread fake news, in partnership with a University, which developed a program to discover which audio, images and text were similarly spread in all these groups.
After agreeing on what was going viral, the diferent newsrooms worked togheter so the fact-cheking would be ready faster and the fake news could be declared false as soon as possible. After that, it was jointly published in all the media – TV, print, online, social media – to amplify it's reach.
Results for this campaign
A study conducted by our team on the final week previous to the elections found out that the spread of fake news had risen nine times in less than a month, what gives a pretty good idea of the challenge. But we dealt with it accordingly. Fato ou Fake did more than 1.000 fact-chekings, being 759 of them quotes from candidates running for office and 241 rumours spread on the internet. Only in GLOBO, one of the newspapers which took part in the iniciative, the audience hit 7,3 million pageviews, with a viewing time, in average, of 3 to 4 minutes, around eight times higher then a regular publication. The experience was so succesful that it was decided it will continue indefinetely.