Introduction To MetaFact

MetaFact is a mission driven AI Chabot that will help validate the news content that appears to be fake, misleading, factually incorrect, propaganda or a click bait among many more forms that are being circulated today on the internet. MetaFact’s sole purpose will be to counter the disinformation that’s been circulated online through social media platforms, fake website masquerading as news site and blogs. MetaFact works on IBM Watson News Discovery platform database and is on its way to develop in-house validation tools to help editors in validating content without wasting long working hours to search through the internet. The principal goal of MetaFact will be to use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to create a workable timeline around any content that will be feed into the system, providing the editors with enough resources to validate the news in the shortest time possible.

The working partnership between AI and editors will be at the ratio of 80+20, wherein 80% will be the role of AI in generating workable timeline and 20% will be the role of an editor in compiling that timeline into a presentable news item. The editor will be the final decision maker to decide if the content is factually correct and okay to be shared. Going forward Meta News will also send out news items generated through our Crowdsourced Journalism platform. This will be done through a Universal Report button, which users can use to send in photos, videos and also news items that they believe are not correct or true.

The main areas wherein MetaFact will help the society at large are:

  • Fact-checking will help improve political discourse by decreasing the risk of spreading misinformation.

• Will avoid disinformation and propaganda to harm individual reputations and privacy, or incite violence, discrimination or hostility against identifiable groups in society.

• To avoid undermining of public trust and confidence in journalism as a public watchdog, which also may mislead the public by blurring the lines between disinformation and media products.

The main objective of MetaFact will be to debunk fake news without any biases, working purely on the data provided in any form or shape and validating the same through our in-house validation tools. The aim would be to partner with different organizations who are already working on the issues of fake news and share resources in countering the menace of fake news is the way forward.

MetaFact will have two main models through which it will further help people understand fake news:

Meta Literacy Program:

Growing concerns about fake news and the impact it has on our lives, has started calls for young people to be taught critical thinking and media literacy skills. There has been a drastic increase in the amount of time children and youth spend with media over the last decade. Children ages 8–18 now spend an average of 7 hours and 38 minutes per day with media outside of school, according to a recent research done by Kaiser Foundation. There is an urgent need to address this issue. Meta Literacy Program is being designed to solve and educated students on how to handle media and become a conscious social media user.

Media Literacy Program helps the students to develop an informed and critical way of thinking. It’s an education that aims to provide the students with necessary tools required to apply critical thinking to media messages and the biases it might create. It provides students with resources to better understand how technology works and how it can help in taking informed decisions. It provides students with necessary tools to check for biases, facts and sentiment of what’s out there in the media. Through the use of workshop and mobile technology, we aim to empower the youth and others to be informed and then inform others.

META FIXERS:

To work on disinformation in today’s time is important and to know what’s out there is critical, but what some much of media being distributed every hour around the world, currently it’s impossible to track all of it. Having Meta Fixers is one way of solving that problem. A Meta Fixer can be someone who’s curious and willing to point out wrong information, an information that a Meta Fixer might come through their timeline or through the WhatsApp group. Someone with the ability to learn and teach at the same time. By sending content that they feel are not factually correct also known as fake news in today’s time. Anyone and everyone can be a Meta Fixer. The problem of fake news is not just for some, it’s a problem that concerns all of us in different ways.

MetaFact was one of the 10 startups selected by APYE Hanyang Change Maker Scholarship 2017 in the field of Social Venture in Journalism and Technology. This initiative is taken by Hanyang University of South Korea with the support of United Nation and Asian Development Bank amongst others. Selection of MetaFact was done under United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 16 “Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels”.

Sagar Kaul, C0-Founder Meta


Originally published at medium.com on July 26, 2017.