MDC Published Research on “Fact-checking in the New Media”

A new study on “Fact-checking in the New Media” was published by the Media Development Center at Birzeit University. The study was written by the researcher Baker Abdel Haq, and supervised by the Research and Studies Coordinator at the Center Saleh Masharqa.

The study presented a review of the latest global and regional fact-checking literature, as well as a sample of open and closed fact-checking communities from around the world, such as the content  division generated by the Reality Check Team at the BBC, the national media watch group Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR), the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) at Poynter, the Jordanian Media Credibility Monitor (Akeed), the African fact-checking platform Africa Check, and the Observers team at France 24.

The study also offered a guideline on fact-checking ethics which guarantee the protection of the fact-checking journalist, the protection of the fact-checking process from being used in media disinformation, and the protection of the lives and rights of people present in fact-checked news pieces.

Abdel Haq presented a long list of fact-checking skills for pictures, videos, and statements which appear on social media platforms, themselves a major source of information for journalists and reporters in creating their written, audio, and visual news content. This is part of a worldwide trend which pits “user-created content” as the newest source in digital media, one that has become an indispensable part of media creation and media studies and research.

Published on the Center’s website (, the study dedicated a big part to the mechanisms and applications of fact checking through the source, user, or account owner fact-checking; fact-checking of breaking news in emergency situations; and picture, video, and geographical location fact-checking.

The Media Research and Policy Unit at the Center is currently conducting two central researches projects. The first one, carried out by Dr. Hasan Duhan and supervised by Dr. Majed Tarban and Saleh Masharqa, revolves around the self-organization of journalism. The second research, which analyzes editorial policies in Palestinian media, is carried out by Na’ila Khalil and supervised by Dr. Widad Al-Barhoughti.

The Center is also preparing a specialized article on digital diplomacy – written by Dr. Wa’el Abedelal and supervised by Saleh Masharqa. The Research and Policy project is implemented with the support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).