EUfactcheck #8 ‘Cross-national fact checking’

This winter season students from the EJTA journalism schools will work together in cross-national teams on fact checks and blogs. A variety of European topics will be addressed: polarisation, climate change, migration, defence budgets and more. Follow us here or on our Twitter and Facebook page.

EUfactcheck, an initiative of the European Journalism Training Association (EJTA) fights misinformation about European policies and topics. Journalism students from all over Europe factcheck claims made by politicians and others and rate them. Our focus is not to debunk fake news or disinformation but to give correct information to the reader.

Latest fact-checks

Mostly false: “We won’t be able to feed our families in 2050”

On October 23, 2022, Mirjam Herrmann, a Member of the climate activist group “Letzte Generation” threw mashed potatoes on the Claude Monet painting “Les Meules” and asserted: “We are in a climate catastrophe… I’m afraid because science tells us that we won’t be able to feed our families in 2050.“ Though her concerns are valid,…

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Mostly true: Wages grew more than prices in countries that introduced the euro

On December 10th 2021, Boris Vujčić stated in a press conference that people should not fear higher prices after the introduction of the Euro in Croatia. He claims that in recent years wages grew more than prices in the countries that introduced the euro. Our investigation concludes that this claim is mostly true. In 2023…

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fact checking

Mostly false: “The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar is fully carbon-neutral”

The World Cup in Qatar is advertised as the first fully carbon neutral tournament. Skepticism about this claim is widespread. Can a major sporting event in a country that is strongly reliant on fossil fuels really produce zero carbon emissions? We checked this claim and found out that it is mostly false: FIFA has highly…

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Mostly true: “EU now spends three times more than Russia on defence”

On November 05th, 2022, Irish left-wing party Independents 4 change (I4C) MP Mick Wallace, tweeted that the “Reality is EU now spends 3 times more than Russia” on defence. After analysing the figures Mr. Wallace refers to in his claim, it becomes clear that the claim is mostly true. Numbers from 2021During a word  exchange…

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False: “The EU has not fulfilled its role as a guarantor and sponsor of the Brussels Agreement”

Aleksandar Vulin, Serbia’s former minister of internal affairs and founder of the political party Movement of Socialists, partly blames the European Union for the escalating situation in Kosovo, which is connected to Kosovo’s  decision to change the license plate policy.  This claim turns out to be false. Serbian newspaper Novosti quotes Vulin’s claim, made on…

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Mostly false: “Herd immunity in Germany has already been reached”

On September 7, 2022, Joachim Kuhs, Member of the European Parliament for Germany, declared on Twitter: “Herd immunity (in Germany) has already been reached: The infection control law is not necessary”. This claim turns out to be mostly false. Kuhs is part of Germany’s far-right opposition party AfD, which works against the government’s infection control…

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Mostly false: “Keep migrants out of the UK by leaving the UN-1951 convention”

On April 26th 2022, the British Democrats said that they want to withdraw from the UN 1951 Refugee Convention. This would make sure no more refugees would enter the UK. At least, that’s what they assert. Due to ‘the obligation of non-refoulment’, article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights and the need for…

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Mostly false: Without the dissenting votes of the AfD, a vaccine mandate would have been introduced in Germany

On April 07th 2022, German right-wing populist party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) politician Alice Weidel claimed on Twitter that the vaccine mandate in Germany only failed because of the dissenting votes of her party. She refers to the voting of the deputies in the Bundestag earlier that day. According to Weidel, only 40 votes more…

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Mostly False : “Most of Wallonia and some of Flanders, are depleting their renewable water resources at the highest rate in northern Europe”

On April 27, 2022, Brussels Times published the article “Major Belgian cities in precarious water situation” where it claimed that most of Wallonia and some of Flanders are depleting their renewable water resources at the highest rate in northern Europe. However, it seems that the author misinterpreted data from Aqueduct making the claim mostly false.…

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Mostly true: diverse teams work better in times of crisis

In a recent talk about women in leading positions Ekin Deligöz, the German undersecretary of the Ministry for Families, Elderly, Women and Youth stated that mixed teams work more resiliently, faster, and more sustainable in times of crisis. This statement proved to be mostly true. “Diversity is not only a self-purpose: mixed teams work more…

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Latest blog posts

Blog: Media and the pitfalls of a political dog whistle

Jarosław Kaczyński, former prime minister of Poland and current chairman of the leading government national-conservative party (PiS), caused a public outcry on social media and broke the news by stating Poland’s low birth rate is caused by women’s alcohol consumption. Kaczyński mentioned he was “joking a bit” but his statement spread like wildfire, increasing his…

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Blog: How does news media choose the experts it gives voice to regarding war in Europe?

The year 2022 has had a difficult start for Europe. In February Russia started a war against Ukraine. This has been challenging for Europe, and perhaps especially for Finland as it is Russia’s neighbor. As journalist students from Finland, we found ourselves wondering who are the Finnish experts talking about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in the media.…

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Media analysis: Finnish news media emphasized “aiding” in the coverage of Ukraine war whereas “uncontrolled immigration” in 2015

In our media analysis, we compare news about Ukrainian war refugees to the news about the refugee crisis in 2015. All news were published by Finnish public media broadcasting company Yle. We wanted to see if there is a difference in how media writes about people fleeing from Ukraine and refugees in 2015. We found…

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Media analysis: Finnish media stays united behind universal military service

Finland’s defence capability became the focus of international media attention after Russia invaded Ukraine. Finland holds a very special geopolitical position in Europe because it has 1300 kilometres border with Russia. In particular, Finland’s position regarding the defense union NATO has become a question of interest. Finland’s military service system is universal, which means that…

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Pastoral workers help young people with suicidal thoughts

As several studies show, corona-lockdowns have led to increased psychological distress to all ages. International suicide hotlines, where pastoral workers take the time to listen, might help. This video is linked to the fact-check article Drastic increase in suicide attempts by children. Leave your comments, thoughts and suggestions in the box below. Take note: your…

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European Journalism Training Association EJTA
Council of Europe
evens foundation
Group photo EUFACTCHECK 240119

The EUFACTCHECK project

EUFACTCHECK is the fact-checking project of the European Journalism Training Association (EJTA) that intends to build a sustainable curriculum unit on fact-checking within a European network of Journalism schools.

Through fact-checking European political claims and trying to tackle misinformation, we want our students and our public to grow a deeper insight and interest in democratic processes, both on national and European level.

EUFACTCHECK wishes to motivate fact-based debate in the EU and to stimulate media and information literacy.

Our history

After the success of the students’ publications, the participants of EJTA’s fact-checking project EUFACTCHECK decided at the EJTA AGM in Paris (July 2019) to move on with the project and to take new steps in the academic year 2019-2020.

By January-February 2019 a manual with guidelines and tips & tricks was published. In February 2020 a second Bootcamp will be organised in Ljubljana, with financial help from the Evens Foundation. This Train the Trainer focused on Central Eastern European countries, some new schools joined this project.
During corona the EJTA-schools continued to verify claims and publish fact checks. Now we are looking ahead to the 2024 EU elections.

For information about the EUfactcheck project please contact the programme manager: carien.touwen@hu.nl 

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