Fact-checking challenges & opportunities in Africa: A New AFCN Webinar
On Monday, 4th of September 2023, ARIJ’s AFCN discussed the opportunities and challenges that African fact-checkers are facing, in a webinar that was attended by 70+ participants via Zoom and +230 Views via Facebook Live from different Arab countries.
Deputy Editor-in-Chief at Africa Check, Cayley Clifford, spoke on the role of Africa Check and the challenges faced by fact-checking organizations in Africa. She pointed to the language barrier as a challenge for fact-checks to reach people, as well as that not relying primarily on local events will yield lower interest by the targeted audience, in addition to the lack of digital literacy.
The webinar, which was moderated by Dr. Arwa Kooli, a professor at the Institute of Journalism and News Sciences in Tunisia, included questions from the participants about the opportunities available to develop the fact-checking field in the region. Clifford highlighted the opportunities for collaboration with organisations and verifying information related to elections and political statements and their importance in the local context. She also pointed out the importance of preventing mis-disinformation through awareness campaigns targeting youths, as they comprise most of the social media users and the internet in the region.
The webinar also discussed the efforts of Africa Facts Network as a one of the main topics, how the cooperation can be strengthened between it and the Arab Fact-Checkers Network (AFCN) to enhance fact-checking methodologies and tools in the Global South.
This webinar is the fifth of a series of webinars conducted by AFCN under ‘Dalil’ project. It’s worth mentioning that “Dalil” is one of AFCN projects supported by the EU, in partnership with “Siren” and “Josa”, and aims to enhance fact-checking and access to accurate information in seven countries in the MENA region (Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Palestine, Morocco, Tunisia & Yemen).