Namibia Fact Check hosts training for journalists and bloggers

18 March 2021 | Education

Namibia Fact Check, with the support of DW Akademie, is hosting a three-day workshop for journalists and bloggers on fact-checking and social media verification.
Speaking at the opening on Wednesday, Namibia Fact Check editor and training facilitator, Frederico Links, said the training will equip the participants with the skills and tools to be able to conduct basic fact checking as media practitioners. “The programme includes modules on identifying and fact checking falsehoods, verifying images, profiles, websites and videos, as well as exposing the participants to tips and tools to help them navigate online content.”
He said that the training is being conducted at a crucial time after they noticed a flood of falsehoods and inaccurate reports on social media in Namibia. “It’s really concerning and it’s clear that there is a substantial pollution of the social media information landscape.”
Links noted that Namibia Fact Check started the project in 2019 in the run-up to the November Presidential and National Assembly elections because they were seeing a lot of political dis-information emerging and confusing people. “The idea to create a fact checker was born to try and deal with a lot of falsehoods that we were seeing in the political space.”

Addressing falsehoods
He explained that the idea grew bigger especially after the start of the pandemic because it raised a lot of concerns around the spread of falsehoods via social media platforms, not just in Namibia, but around the world. “It became imperative that we step into the space and try and deal with the falsification, and try and counter the spread of disinformation through social media and offline of course.”
In an interview with Nampa, fact check and research intern at The Namibian newspaper, Tia-Zia ||Garoes, said at the end of the three-day workshop she wants to be able to look at a document after reading the basics and pin-point exactly what she should fact check. “I really want to be able to identify where exactly to look, what to look for and how to find the right information by fact checking properly. Not everything is done by the journalists. As a fact checker and researcher you are responsible to double check everything to make sure of its accuracy,” she said. – Nampa

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