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

False: „Germany will never fulfill its energy requirements with only wind energy and solar power.“

On March 26th 2022, Stephan Brandner, Deputy Federal Spokesperson of the right-wing party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), posted a press release on Instagram in which he claims that Germany will never fulfill its energy demand with only wind energy and solar power. Different studies have proven that this statement is false. In the past the…

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Mostly true: Less educated people are more likely to get depressed

The German TV-Show „Hischhausens Sprechstunde“ explains in a short film during the show (beginning at 28:30 minutes) how and why someone is developing a depression. One reason, among others, being a low education. Causes and concomitant effects are difficult to separate, which is why the general scientific consensus is that social status, and thus education,…

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Mostly true: E-vehicles are more efficient than combustion engines

The effects of climate change are becoming increasingly noticeable. In this context, the e-vehicle is gaining more and more popularity in Germany – many people expect it to have a better climate footprint than conventional combustion engines. This thinking is promoted by statements like this: “E-vehicles are three times more efficient than combustion engines”. This…

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Mostly False: Windmills are, considering their entire life cycle, not sustainable

In the Dutch House of Representatives debate on climate and energy on the 10th of June 2021, engineer and Belang van Nederland party leader Wybren van Haga claimed that wind farms, solar farms and biomass plants are not sustainable over their entire life cycle. In his plea, Van Haga refers to the citizens who live…

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True: “The European Union’s climate tax is as much as 60% of the energy production costs.”

Numerous billboards around Poland appeared around February 2022, reading: “The European Union’s climate tax is as much as 60% of the energy production costs. EU climate politics = expensive energy/high prices.” The billboards turned out to be part of a campaign ran by Polish state-owned utility companies, financed by the Polish Ministry of State Assets.…

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Mostly false: “The danger is real: since 2015 it has been possible by law for third countries to use nuclear weapons on Ukrainian soil”

Russian state media Russia Today claimed in an article on its German website that “the danger is real” and that since 2015 it has been legally possible for third countries to use nuclear weapons on Ukrainian soil. Research shows that part of the claim is true: it is possible by law for third countries to use…

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True: “Belgium drops to the 49th place in the Climate Change Performance Index”

On November 9, 2021, Flemish newspaper “De Morgen” published an article titled “Belgium loses more terrain on climate index: 49th place between Belarus and Slovenia.” Does Belgium really perform that bad in the Climate Change Performance Index compared to other European countries? Yes, it does. What is the CCPI? The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI)…

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Uncheckable: “Drastic increase in suicide attempts by children“

According to an article published by Berliner Morgenpost on January 6, a study of the Essen University Hospital claims that up to 500 children required treatment in intensive care units in Germany after suicide attempts. Since it is not possible to verify this statement, this claim must be classified as uncheckable. The article explains that the lockdown…

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True: “China dominates the global graphite market, threatening electric cars’ production”

In an article titled “Chinese graphite dominance threatens electric car ambitions”, posted on 14th March 2022, “Deutsche Welle” reports that Chinese graphite dominance threatens electric car ambitions worldwide. The author Ashutosh Pandey (Senior Business Editor for DW) states that China is a dominating force in the graphite supply chain, bearing in mind that the material…

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Latest blog posts

Antinatalism: the solution to the end of the climate crisis?

Human reproduction is essential for the continuance of the human species. Antinatalism is the absolute rejection of human birth. A large number of antinatalists embrace antinatalism for climate political motives. Is society ready for such drastic measures to provide a future for the living? Interview with: Verena Brunschweiger Leave your comments, thoughts and suggestions in the…

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Blog: End of the European Union – who pays the price?

Nowadays, 27 countries are members of the European Union, that was founded in 1993. All of them benefit from democracy, security and free movement of products and capital. The aim of this Blogpost is a conceptional experiment, which takes place in Europe – but pictures the countries without the reliable union. All members have left the…

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Blog: Science and society: relationship status (un)known

Ever since COVID-19 changed our daily lives, the news seem overloaded with varying information on the pandemic. Updates on the vaccination rate and the number of infected people as well as videos of demonstrations on the most recent measures by the government and articles on the newest conspiracy theories about the coronavirus make one feel extremely…

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Blog: What does loud noise really do to our body and soul?

On 16 March 2021, BBC Online reported on negative health effects linked to noise pollution. During the fact check, we learned that vibrations and noises not only irritate a person and cause discomfort but can also lead to negative health consequences such as cardiovascular diseases including hypertension, gastrointestinal ulcers, vegetative disorders, mental illnesses, and hearing…

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Blog: The possible accuracy of global Covid vaccination numbers

This blog post reveals why the tweet of an UN representative, claiming that just 0.3% of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in lower-income countries, was not as easy to fact check as initially believed. Strictly, the statement can be seen as false, but does the complexity of the according figures even allow a definite judgment?…

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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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