Poynter: Do masks really work? Here are PolitiFact’s answers for mask skeptics.

Poynter: Do masks really work? Here are PolitiFact’s answers for mask skeptics.. “We’ve been reviewing mask science since the start of the pandemic, and we’re persuaded that mask-wearing is a good idea. But if you’re not, we wanted to address your questions head on. Here’s the latest research on the efficacy of masks and answers to questions, from readers and our own team, on what we know and what we don’t about mask-wearing.”

Google Blog: These global projects expand the reach of fact-checks

Google Blog: These global projects expand the reach of fact-checks. “Journalists can play a fundamental role supporting an evidence-based discourse by listening to their audiences’ concerns and providing corrective information about misconceptions that circulate online and offline. To support this work, the Google News Initiative launched a $3 million Open Fund in January. Over a three-week window, we received more than 309 applications from 74 countries. Today, we are announcing the 11 projects that were selected through an extensive review process that included a 17-person project team and an expert jury reviewing the highest-scoring applicants.”

PolitiFact: No, Biden didn’t promote ‘mandatory’ COVID-19 vaccines in primetime address

PolitiFact: No, Biden didn’t promote ‘mandatory’ COVID-19 vaccines in primetime address. “In a primetime address delivered hours after he signed a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill into law, Biden said his goal is to make small-group gatherings possible by July 4. He encouraged Americans to get vaccinated and follow public health guidelines to make that happen. But the president did not say he would mandate that everybody get the vaccine, despite what one conservative commentator said in a Facebook live video reacting to the address.”

Poynter: A year into the pandemic, MediaWise teen fact-checkers prepare to tackle COVID-19 misinformation on YouTube

Poynter: A year into the pandemic, MediaWise teen fact-checkers prepare to tackle COVID-19 misinformation on YouTube. “On Feb. 11, 2020, the MediaWise Teen Fact-Checking Network published its first fact-check about the coronavirus. The story, reported on by then-16-year-old Angie Li, detailed what we knew about the virus (at the time, very little), and gave tips on how not to fall for or share misinformation. Now a year into the pandemic, Li’s fact-check served as just a glimpse at the COVID-19 misinformation to come.”

Poynter: Vaccine gaslighting, mask falsehoods and fake cures dominate recent claims added to the CoronaVirusFacts Alliance Database

Poynter: Vaccine gaslighting, mask falsehoods and fake cures dominate recent claims added to the CoronaVirusFacts Alliance Database. “As world leaders and everyday citizens roll up their sleeves to get vaccinated against COVID-19, purveyors of falsehoods have turned to a new tactic — claiming those vaccinations were a hoax. Vice President Kamala Harris, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa have all been the subject of false claims that their televised vaccinations were ‘staged.’”

Mashable: The AI-powered fact checker that investigates QAnon influencers shares its secret weapon

Mashable: The AI-powered fact checker that investigates QAnon influencers shares its secret weapon. “Founded in 2017 by CEO Lyric Jain, [Logically] combines its AI tech with human fact-checking experts in order to uncover, track, archive, and debunk conspiracy theories ranging from QAnon to misinformation about COVID-19. The company already has a few public-facing products, such as mobile apps and web browser extensions to help users navigate online misinformation they may come across throughout their everyday internet use.”

Poynter: No, Bill Gates is not calling for ‘mandatory’ vaccinations

Poynter: No, Bill Gates is not calling for ‘mandatory’ vaccinations. “A YouTube video from Rebel News claims that Bill Gates is calling for the mandatory vaccination of all people, and states that the billionaire Microsoft co-founder wants pregnant people and children to be forced to take it. The video also claims that those who receive the vaccine will face a 1-in-10,000 chance of death. Both of these claims are Not Legit. Here’s how we fact-checked it.”

MisinfoCon: An introduction to Propwatch — the world’s first visual database of propaganda techniques

MisinfoCon: An introduction to Propwatch — the world’s first visual database of propaganda techniques. “Propwatch uses its pioneering web platform to initiate the inoculation process. Our unique platform catalogs and cross-references embedded video segments, so visitors… can see propaganda techniques being executed in real-time, and not only learn to identify the techniques, but to understand how and why they work.”

Snopes: Did Google Maps Introduce a ‘Show Republicans’ Feature?

Snopes: Did Google Maps Introduce a ‘Show Republicans’ Feature?. “This item was not a factual recounting of real-life events, as it originated with a website that describes its output as being humorous or satirical in nature. The Rocky Mountain Oyster website’s ‘About’ section is a tongue-in-cheek text that touts dubious accomplishments, such as the site’s being ‘Colorado’s most fact-checked news source’ and its multiple Pulitzer Prizes for ‘Truthitude.’”

10,300 documented falsehoods in 12 months: the CoronaVirusFacts Alliance enters its second year (Poynter)

Poynter: 10,300 documented falsehoods in 12 months: the CoronaVirusFacts Alliance enters its second year. “The alliance is the largest fact-checking collaboration in history, and its database currently holds more than 10,300 fact-checks about the pandemic. In 12 months, 260,000 unique visitors viewed the Alliance’s landing page on the Poynter Institute website a total of 345,000 times. That’s nearly 1,000 pageviews a day.”

NBC News: Twitter launches ‘Birdwatch,’ a forum to combat misinformation

NBC News: Twitter launches ‘Birdwatch,’ a forum to combat misinformation. “The new system allows users to discuss and provide context to tweets they believe are misleading or false. The project, titled Birdwatch, is a standalone section of Twitter that will at first only be available to a small set of users, largely on a first-come, first-served basis. Priority will not be provided to high-profile people or traditional fact-checkers, but users will have to use an account tied to a real phone number and email address.”

‘#ScienceUpFirst:’ Social media campaign targets COVID-19 misinformation with science (Toronto Star)

Toronto Star: ‘#ScienceUpFirst:’ Social media campaign targets COVID-19 misinformation with science. “Microsoft founder Bill Gates did not create the virus that causes COVID-19 and he is not forcing microchips into your body through vaccinations. Those pieces of misinformation are examples of what a group of Canadian scientists and health professionals is trying to discredit through a new campaign tackling inaccurate theories about the pandemic.”

TechCrunch: Debunk, don’t ‘prebunk,’ and other psychology lessons for social media moderation

TechCrunch: Debunk, don’t ‘prebunk,’ and other psychology lessons for social media moderation. “If social networks and other platforms are to get a handle on disinformation, it’s not enough to know what it is — you have to know how people react to it. Researchers at MIT and Cornell have some surprising but subtle findings that may affect how Twitter and Facebook should go about treating this problematic content. MIT’s contribution is a counterintuitive one. When someone encounters a misleading headline in their timeline, the logical thing to do would be to put a warning before it so that the reader knows it’s disputed from the start. Turns out that’s not quite the case.”

Poynter: What to expect from fact-checking in 2021

Poynter: What to expect from fact-checking in 2021. “2020 has likely been the most chaotic year in the 21st century and certainly an overwhelming one for fact-checkers. The coronavirus pandemic not only shook the world in an unprecedented way, but it also redesigned how fact-checkers work, how we learn from one another and, most importantly, how we collaborate not only locally but globally.”

Snopes: Viral Post ‘How To Fight Covid at Home’ Provides Problematic Advice

Snopes: Viral Post ‘How To Fight Covid at Home’ Provides Problematic Advice. “We refer to repeatedly copy-and-pasted text shared across multiple digital platforms as ‘copypasta’ — a sort of chain email for the social media age. Copypasta has been a major feature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the misinformation associated with it, often claiming to provide anonymously sourced ‘insider’ information on how to treat, cure, or avoid the disease that is often incorrect and dangerous. As always, we remind our readers that anonymous claims on the internet should never be taken as factual, efficacious, or even safe.”