StopFake, the Ukrainian fact-checking group hired by Facebook in 2020 to counter fake news on its platform in Ukraine, has been found to have ties to far-right organizations, the New York Times (NYT) has reported
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 27th July, 2020) StopFake, the Ukrainian fact-checking group hired by Facebook in 2020 to counter fake news on its platform in Ukraine, has been found to have ties to far-right organizations, the New York Times (NYT) has reported.
In early July, Zaborona, a Ukrainian news outlet, published a report about StopFake's ties to far-right groups and shared a photograph that showed StopFake's member with nationalist figures, including a white-power musician whose lyrics deny the Holocaust. The fact-checking group has denied having bias or ties to the far right, while Zaborona's editor, Katerina Sergatskova, was forced to flee Ukraine after receiving death threats following the report.�
The fact-checking group plans to file a lawsuit to defend its reputation, and Yevhen Fedchenko, StopFake's editor in chief, has told NYT that "legal team advised us against talking to media until the hearing in the court."
Meanwhile, the International Fact-Checking Network, a group that administers Facebook's code of principles that promotes fairness in fact-checking, said that an interim assessment into StopFake's activities is underway.
According to NYT, StopFake has carried out approximately 200 fact checks of articles and posts for Facebook since April, and most of them were apolitical and related to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, some posts address Ukrainian identity. In particular, the group contested a post that said that most Ukrainians celebrate the May 9 Victory Day of the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany. Moreover, StopFake also labeled an interview with the headline "Ukraine Is Russian People" as fake news.