Piga Firimbi, a wing under Africa Uncensored, is charged with identifying and verifying information circulating on social media, mainstream media as well as information on issues discussed in public debates.
A single fact-check would ideally undergo research, verification, writing and eventually editing and publishing.
The methodology involves:
- Identifying a claim – Potential false/fake claims are identified by fact-checkers from online or mainstream media. In some cases, the audience would flag misinformation and tag Piga Firimbi’s social media handles for fact-checking like here.
- Verifying the claim – The fact-checker would then look into the claim by finding credible data sources, usually, sources that are most credible for local data for example the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) like in this fact-check. Verification could also include using OSINT tools to establish the origin of images or claims like here. As well as expert interviews.
- Drafting the fact-check- The claim and findings are then put together in form of a fact-checking article. The article contains three parts: the first part establishes the claim and where it was shared, and the second is the background section where context around the claim is built, e.g why the claim is circulating at a certain time. This could be due to what is trending at the time or news developments at the time e.g claims around the Kenyan August 9, 2022, General Elections archived in a collection of fact-checks here.
- Conclusion – With the verdicts TRUE (this is when evidence is found to back up a certain claim like here), FALSE (when evidence points towards the falsity of a claim like here), FAKE (this is especially for fabricated job advertisements like here, or fabricated documents like here) or MISLEADING (when a claim is made out of context like here).
- Publication – After copy editing and establishing beyond doubt that the evidence and verdicts in the fact-check article are accurate, the article is uploaded on the Piga Firimbi website. The article’s link is then shared across the Piga Firimbi and Africa Uncensored social media platforms and can be diversified into video formats like here and here for example, or into a Swahili version like here to serve different audiences.