Using Your Audience To Fight Fake News: Ground

The smartphone app that uses AI, and real people, to verify the news

Fake news isn’t only a problem on social media.

False stories spread by bots (and real users) are found on a variety of channels, websites and platforms.

On Twitter, for example, fake news stories actually spread faster than true stories, according to a study published in Science magazine.

“Social media lacks the checks and balances that should be in place,” said Harleen Kaur, CEO and cofounder of Ground, a company participating in the Digital News Innovation Challenge (DNIC).

“Ground is very much an effort to combat that.”

Compiling news from over 500 publications, Ground instantly provides users with accurate, accredited journalistic content by curating content from these accredited news sources.

Ground then goes even further by verifying news found on social media channels.

Using artificial intelligence, the company then weeds out false reports by applying verification algorithms to breaking news content found on social media.

The author of news-related posts, their location, and the user’s history when it comes to writing fake or real facts are all taken into account when creating a “veracity score” for social media reports.

Once the newsworthiness of a post crosses a certain threshold, Ground’s AI tool inputs the story into the app, explains Kaur.

Ground then takes the verification process one step further.

Alerts are sent to users in the same geographic location of a trending news story asking them if what’s being said on social media is actually happening.

Ground also allows users to report on news directly, adding a citizen journalism element to the app.

If a user comes across a major roadway accident, they can report it on Ground. An alert will then be sent to nearby Ground users to verify or add information to the story.

Turning users into citizen journalists will create tangible benefits for professional journalists, too.

When it comes to breaking news, says Kaur, journalists struggle with getting accurate information from on-the-ground sources as it happens.“We’re providing that,” she explains.

“That way, journalists can do what they do best, which is provide context and continuity around a story, while also getting reliable sources.”

To check out Ground’s approach to verified breaking news, download the app on from the Apple Store or Google Play.

Article written by Michael D’Alimonte

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