PTI’s fact-checking desk relies on its extensive network of reporters and stringers to identify claims with questionable content or misinformation. The team meets daily to select which claims to fact check, keeping in mind their importance and virality. We always take an unbiased stance and are governed by the following factors while choosing any claim to fact-check:

  • Is this a fact or an opinion?
  • Is the claim in the public interest? Does it have the potential to sway the audience?
  • Can the information potentially have harmful or dangerous consequences for society?
  • Is the information getting viral / gaining significant traction online across different platforms?

Our team constantly monitors all potential sources of misinformation, ranging from statements by public figures (such as politicians and celebrities) to social media platforms (including Twitter, Facebook, and WhatsApp). We also consider claims submitted by the general public through the 'Contact Us' form on our website or email.

PTI Fact Check has a structured and systematic set of rules to investigate the claims and verify them using the fact check tools and with the help of an extensive network of PTI bureaus and reporters worldwide. The desk conducts in-depth research to verify whether the claim was made and in what context. Our vast network of journalists, stringers, and domain experts seek evidence to discover the claim’s facts. The desk strives to triangulate the veracity of a claim through all potential sources, including (but not limited to):

  • Expert interviews across industries/ functions/ government and industry bodies
  • Official press statements
  • Databases (specialized and licensed sources)
  • Official reports (company reports, government notices/ filings)
  • Official social media handles
  • Subject Experts

Below is the methodology that the PTI Fact Check Desk follows to verify the claims-

  • A. PTI Fact Check Desk verifies articles and claims the old-fashioned way with human fact-checkers who write up articles confirming news topics with their findings. The desk also scans for issues like edited images, edited videos, fake or misleading texts, morphed tweets, etc., using different fact-check tools available over the Internet.
  • B. The list of Internet tools, like Google Reverse Image Search and InVid, is too long, and the PTI Fact Check Desk uses these tools according to the requirements in viral claims.
  • C. To reach out to primary or secondary sources to verify the claims and to know the fact.
  • D. To reach out to any individual/authority related to the source/claim or to an expert with extensive knowledge of the subject to verify the claims.
  • E. With its in-depth subject knowledge and extensive reach, PTI's network of bureaus and reporters across India and the world supports the PTI Fact Check Desk to evaluate, investigate the claims and arrive at a conclusion.

Following the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) mentioned above, the PTI Fact Check Desk verifies a claim and concludes with a straightforward statement describing the claim as Fake, Misleading, or True. There is no compromise on the credibility and reliability of the source during the verification process. Once the evidence is established, the conclusion is arrived at, and a final rating is given -- True, False, Misleading, or Unverified.

All the fact checks are published on the PTI website and transmitted to our subscribers through the wire. Claims and conclusions are clearly stated in every fact-checking story. Facts and supporting evidence are presented in the report precisely and transparently for readers to verify for themselves and understand the investigation process the desk follows. We strive to make our information easy to read with an explicit path tracking of the conclusion. We refrain from making editorial comments and maintain the policy of non-partisanship and a neutral and unbiased stance in every story.

Given the dynamism of available information, The PTI Fact Check Desk is always on the lookout for the latest news and updates the articles (if required). The fact-checking team follows a broader PTI correction policy. In case of an error, we promptly acknowledge and issue a correction. For updated/corrected stories, a disclaimer is appended to the original report with the details on the modification made/updated information.

We also encourage readers to share their feedback through the 'Contact Us' tab on our website or by email.