The funny thing about this new wave of “fact checkers” is that there’s more than one organization claiming to be at the helm.
As one can logically determine, there should never be any reason for there to be more than one “fact checker” because, as their existence implies, there should never be more than one set of “facts”. The idea that there are competing fact-checking companies, all hoping to use their connections to conjure authority out of thin air, should be alarming to us.
And, as you can imagine in any industry operating under the auspices of competition, there is a desire to be noticed – which, again, isn’t the sort of drama that propels the pursuit of truth forward.
But still, it’s important to be the fact-checking group du jour, and the quickest way to steal that clout is by adding your opinion of the truth to the conversation of someone far more valued than yourself. In many ways, these fact-checkers are riding the coattails of the social media personalities that they attack.
Such is the case this week with Candace Owens.
A so-called fact-checking website recently issued a correction after alleging a post saying Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden isn’t president-elect was wrong.
PolitiFact issued a statement following a threat of legal action from popular conservative commentator Candace Owens.
“Correction: PolitiFact originally labeled this video false in our capacity as a third-party fact-checker for Facebook,” PolitiFact said. “On Nov. 20, an appeal to that decision was made on behalf of Ms. Owens. PolitiFact approved the appeal on Nov. 20, determined that a correction was appropriate, and removed the false rating.”
The video in question featured Owens explaining the legal electoral process, and stating that Joe Biden will not be the “president-elect” until the states have all certified their elections.
Given that the truth is a sacred and unmoving object, mistakes mustn’t be tolerated in the fact-checking business – which itself shouldn’t be a business at all.
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