The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Introducing #DIYFactCheck, a project from The Fact Checker

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In 2019, The Fact Checker noticed the spread of misleading video posed a challenge not only to fact-checkers but also to anyone relying on social media or Web searches to get information or find the latest news. To help, we published the Fact Checker’s guide to manipulated video. This year, we felt it was necessary to take it one step further and give readers their own tools to debunk false and misleading visuals.

As journalists, verifying video is a key part of covering a story. Whether the video is exclusively obtained from a source or stumbled upon via social media, it’s imperative to take the right steps to ensure the video is unaltered and presented in the correct context. The Fact Checker wants to teach you to be your own video investigator by walking you through the process our journalists use to verify open-source video. For the next four weeks, you can find us posting on The Washington Post’s Instagram page under the hashtag #DIYFactCheck.

You will learn how to look at online video with a critical eye. The weekly slide shows published to Instagram will teach you the skills of a visual investigator. This includes how to find the original source of a video, with tools such as reverse-image search. You’ll learn how to research who posted the video and spot any red flags about the uploader. Lastly, the guide will walk you through how to find where and when the video was filmed, using satellite imagery and Google Street View. This project is supported by a grant from the Poynter Fact-Checking Development Grant Fund. We hope this can help empower everyone to fact-check videos and make your feeds easier to navigate.

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