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FAAPA Holds Seminar on ‘Fact-Checking, Detection of Fake News in Media Content’

A seminar convened by the Atlantic Federation of African Press Agencies (FAAPA) commenced in April 22, 2024 in Rabat, delving into the theme of fact-checking and the detection of fake news in media content.
Over the course of five days, the seminar aims to equip 24 journalists from FAAPA member press agencies with essential skills to tackle the proliferation of misinformation. Topics slated for discussion include the historical context of fake news dissemination, the emergence of fact-checking methodologies, and the tools necessary for effective verification.
Addressing attendees at the seminar’s inauguration, FAAPA President, MAP Director-General Fouad Arif underscored the timeliness of the chosen theme. He emphasized FAAPA’s commitment to fostering skill development and fostering exchange among African journalists on issues pertinent to the media profession.
Arif expressed optimism that the seminar would catalyze the establishment of an active network of fact-checkers within the pan-African federation. This network, he asserted, would play a pivotal role in implementing rigorous verification techniques across member newsrooms, enhancing collaboration within FAAPA.
Furthermore, Arif outlined the broader objective of the initiative, which seeks to create a specialized platform for verifying information and multimedia content. Additionally, plans are underway to develop a comprehensive fact-checking guide tailored to African press agency journalists.
Xavier Messé A Tiati, a Cameroonian journalist and media expert participating as a trainer, lauded FAAPA’s choice of theme. He stressed the urgency for journalists to acquire the latest fact-checking techniques, particularly in light of the rapid dissemination of false information facilitated by social media and the internet.
“This training is timely, given the sensitivity of the issue at hand. Journalists are constantly exposed to false news spread with alarming speed and precision by clandestine actors,” Tiati remarked.
Anticipated outcomes of the seminar include the establishment of a FAAPA-affiliated network of fact-checkers. Tasked with sharing best practices and bolstering fact-checking initiatives within African newsrooms, this network is poised to strengthen media integrity across the continent.

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