In communities across the country, local radio and television stations and broadcast networks provide Americans’ most trusted news. The Knight Foundation says, “Local news media are a cornerstone of democracy in the United States. They help keep residents informed of the significant issues facing their cities, towns and nearby areas; hold political and civic leaders accountable for their actions; and foster a sense of community among their readers and viewers.”
With this responsibility, broadcasters are committed to fact-checking and using innovative new tools to combat the constantly changing methods of disinformation that runs rampant on so many online platforms. Here are just a few examples:
- Hearst TV and radio stations partnered with FactCheck.org during the 2020 election cycle to promote their work and interviews with their staff to explain the facts behind important stories.
- Charlotte, N.C.’s WRAL works with Politifact to investigate claims from politicians, advertisements and social media with fact-checking. “Through the WRAL and PolitiFact NC relationship, people across the state will have access to this essential information online, on-air and on social media,” said Ashley Talley, WRAL’s enterprise executive producer.
- VERIFY, the fact-checking initiative from TV station group TEGNA, provides transparency into the reporting process and authenticates topics and news submitted by viewers. A recent VERIFY story breaking down false claims in a viral TikTok video included useful information about how to identify other false claims on social media.
- Graham Media Group’s Trust Index initiative takes inquiries from viewers and uses Trust Index protocols to report factual stories. “Nothing is more important than getting the story right,” said Emily Barr, President and CEO of Graham Media Group. “We are providing timely training and processes to our six newsrooms to help in the fight against misinformation campaigns attacking local news.”
It’s this commitment to localism, fairness and accuracy that makes local TV and radio stations and broadcast networks America’s most trusted news sources. Broadcasters are working to provide the stories that matter most to you. We are providing just the facts and we work hard to be sure we get them right. Learn more about how broadcasters are serving their communities in significant ways at WeAreBroadcasters.com/AmericasStories.