Latest Posts

Email outreach to the Des Moines Register et al

Upon finding dubiously sourced information in a byline-less Des Moines Register editorial, Zebra Fact Check reached out to try to find the primary source backing the editorial’s claims. Quickly we realized that the editorial had very probably borrowed, without credit, material from the website. We started our outreach solely with the purpose of obtaining information about the primary source….
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Email Outreach to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s Brenda Looper

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Brenda Looper

After we noticed an April 11, 2018 newspaper opinion article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette making misleading statements about Zebra Fact Check and another site I help run, we tried to contact the author, Brenda Looper, via the email address listed on the Democrat-Gazette’s website. We sent the first email on April 11, 2018 and the second on April 13, 2018….
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Email Outreach to Allison Colburn, Louis Jacobson, Angie Holan and Aaron Sharockman

(Post-publication update note: We published this with no title. We added the title promptly) Email outreach to PolitiFact’s Allison Colburn, Louis Jacobson, Angie Holan and Aaron Sharockman, Sent March 29, 2018. Dear PolitiFact folks, As most of you are probably aware, PolitiFact rated charges the ACA cut Medicare as “Half True” or worse (mostly worse, were you to tell the truth about…
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Email outreach to PolitiFact’s John Kruzel and Katie Sanders

PolitiFact writer-researcher John Kruzel

After writing an article for PolitiFact Bias containing criticisms of a March 3, 2018 PolitiFact fact check, we sent the following email to the writer and editor asking for either a correction or explanation of what looks like a core error. We copied the email to PolitiFact Editor Angie Drobnic Holan, PolitiFact Executive Director Aaron Sharockman and International Fact-Checking Network…
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Zinke, gas prices and PolitiFact

Does some form of Trump Derangement Syndrome make it impossible for mainstream media fact checkers to do their work properly? Consider President Donald Trump’s Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. And consider PolitiFact. At the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference, Zinke claimed that under the Obama administration consumers paid about $100 to fill the tank with gas. Today, Zinke said, it costs…
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What does IFCN verification mean?

This blog post will clear my spindle of two recent issues connected to the International Fact-Checking Network. If you sign and the IFCN does not verify, then you did not sign A recent update to the IFCN’s page of principles and verified signatories to its statement of principles offended our sense of logic. The IFCN encourages fact-checking organizations to subscribe…
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Biased reporters and nonpartisan reporting

On Feb. 2, 2018, the International Fact-Checking Network added the Daily Caller’s fact-checking project, Check Your Fact, to its list of “verified signatories” to its fact-checking code of principles. We’re disappointed at the rush to subscribe to the IFCN’s statement of principles. We find some of the principles arbitrary, and one in particular we find deceptive. The Daily Caller’s effort…
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Does CHIP renewal save $6 billion over 10 years?

“(W)e wanted permanent CHIP, which, by the way, saves $6 billion.” —Nancy Pelosi, from a Jan. 18, 2018 press conference   “CBO analyses back up Pelosi’s numbers. Because the reauthorization of CHIP would essentially take the place of more expensive programs, doing so would eventually net savings for the government. We rate her statement True. —PolitiFact, from a Jan. 24,…
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Inquiry sent to Alison Mitchell of the Congressional Research Service

We sent the following message to Alison Mitchell of the Congressional Research Service in an attempt to clarify the CBO’s language about the “costs” of employment-based insurance under CHIP reauthorization. I’m a fact-checking journalist looking at claims made about the CHIP program renewal. I’ve run across your name more than once while trying to find information on the relationship between…
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