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PortalCheck: a resource hub to support countering disinformation

Launched by UNESCO together with Chequeado - LatamChequea and funded by the European Union, PortalCheck.org is a new online platform with complementary resources and tools to help combat mis/disinformation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic in Latin American and Caribbean

PortalCheck is the first digital resource Hub in Latin America and the Caribbean to support efforts to address mis/disinformation related to the current pandemic. The project, which is funded by the European Union (EU), is implemented by UNESCO and Chequeado – LatamChequea. The platform includes tools and material produced by fact-checking organisations throughout the entire region and is directed at a number of stakeholder groups interested in enhancing their awareness and expertise in the current infodemic phenomenon.

"PortalCheck is a collaborative project by organisations who are working on disinformation, to offer useful resources in one unique space so that we can all contribute to verifying information that comes to us and prevent the spread of disinformation,"

said Laura Zommer, journalist and executive director of Chequeado.

The site includes a section on checked and verified information of some of the most popular disinformation content circulating in the region, which can be viewed in different formats such as videos, texts and podcasts. It also provides content creators and influencers with tips and resources about how not to inadvertently share unverified information. As part of the project the organisers have coordinated different capacity building initiatives targeted at social media influencers and other content creators to strengthen their knowledge on how to combat mis/disinformation.

"We are very excited about this project which is part of a global project called ‘#CoronavirusFacts - Addressing the ‘Disinfodemic’ on COVID-19’ and about the potential impact that PortalCheck can achieve in combatting disinformation in Latin America and the Caribbean,"

said Lidia Brito, Director of the UNESCO Regional Office for Sciences for Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to the platform being a valuable tool for Member States and other relevant stakeholders to help address disinformation it also raises awareness and reinforces the work of fact-checking organisations in the region, Brito noted that this project has also strengthened relationships with a number of important partners who are collaborating and supporting the project including the donor, the European Union Foreign Policy Instrument (FPI).

Journalists have a special section, with practical tools on how to verify data and images, and for teachers the Hub includes proposals for activities that they can use in the classroom. The platform also offers recommendations for governments and other institutions.

PortalCheck is a collaborative initiative that centralises various materials so that each target group can find the resources to combat mis/disinformation from their viewpoint.

The platform will also be available in English and Portuguese.

 

‘Digital Lab - PortalCheck'

The Hub is also a space where one can find announcements for free activities and events related to fact-checking and combatting disinformation in Latin America and the Caribbean, such as the official launch of the platform and the ‘Digital Lab – PortalCheck' event.

Digital Lab – PortalCheck is an event that will connect fact-checkers, journalists, and representatives from some of the most widely acclaimed digital platforms to discuss the creation and consumption of digital content in the time of the pandemic.

 

MOOC - 'Disinformation and fact-checking in times of COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean'.

A bespoke 4-week massive open online course entitled 'Disinformation and fact-checking in times of COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean'. This free online course, facilitated by Cristina Tardáguila, Associate Director of the International Data Verification Network, offers an insight into the history of fact-checking, with examples of real-life situations, especially focused on COVID-19 and governance (with a special focus on elections) in Latin America and the Caribbean at the time of the pandemic.

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