By Anya Schiffrin
30 August 2019

Much time and money have been spent on combatting misinformation through fact-checking. But it’s not clear whether it has any impact at all. 

Fact-checkers are taking credit for the circulation collapse of the doctored Nancy Pelosi video that circulated widely online after being aired on Fox news in the US and tweeted about by President Donald Trump on May 24th 2019.

After it was highlighted by Washington Post and others, views and shares fell dramatically. Facebook was urged to remove it but declined saying that the company “does not require posts to be true.” Instead they flagged it as false and reduced its distribution. YouTube removed the video altogether. This ambiguous response was typical of the constant skirmishes seen in the ongoing war against online dis/misinformation.

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