Why Do Fact-Checking Organizations Go Beyond Fact-Checking? A Leap Toward Media and Information Literacy Education
This study aims to investigate why a remarkable number of fact-checking organizations go beyond “fact-checking” and directly involve Media and Information Literacy (MIL) initiatives and delve into their practices, strategies, and challenges. A qualitative research design was adopted via interviews combined with online observations conducted between January and October 2021, with 12 practitioners from 8 different organizations around the world. Fact-checkers aim to inoculate the public against false information flow and build resilience via educational strategies. They also work within the educational system and mobilize volunteer teachers as proxies to disseminate the knowledge to a wider public. The results indicated that when fact-checking organizations involve educational projects with a politically neutral stance, they attract funds from NGOs, tech companies, and sometimes from governments. Thus, it brings an opportunity to widen the social reach and strengthen their separate education departments by employing more educators and translators.