VoxCheck F.A.Q.

VoxCheck is an independent project of VoxUkraine non-profit organization aimed at checking the statements of Ukrainian politicians.

Since March 23, 2018 VoxCheck acceded to the Poynter Institute Code of Ethics.

VoxCheck goal

Our main task is to promote high quality economic discussion in Ukraine. As Ukrainian politicians often misinterpret data or even manipulate information, the VoxCheck team reviews statements of politicians and dismantles economic myths. Ukrainian politicians are subject to fact checking regardless of governmental affiliations or political party membership.

“Rating of manipulators and deceivers”

Since 2017, we continuously monitor the statements of top Ukrainian politicians and check them. Based on these results, we develop a rating of the most deceitful and the most honest public figures.

The list of politicians for the rating is based on sociological surveys from Kyiv International Institute of Sociology, Democratic Initiatives Foundation and Rating group. As of March 2018, the monitoring list included 13 politicians who are likely to run for the 2019 Presidential Elections (see the list here).

How VoxCheck picks up political statements

VoxCheck prioritizes statements on economic topics, namely economic environment,, foreign exchange and financial markets, state budget,  and overall reform progress. Statements for fact-checking contain statistics that can be verified through open sources. VoxCheck does not check opinions that are not based on specific facts. Statements that are taken out of context, are not subject to verification.

Moreover, at this stage we do not check the statements regarding the work of law enforcement bodies and the GPO because of lack of data for verification.

Non-factcheckable statements Factcheckable statements
“The foreign countries would welcome professionals (from Ukraine), who emigrate because of the shutdown of (Ukrainian) enterprises and scanty salaries” (Oleksandr Vilkul, MP) “Look, in 2008 the average retirement allowance (in Ukraine) was USD 154, and now it is USD 68 after the increase. And this is the figure for the next year” (Yuliya Tymoshenko, MP)

Suggest a fact-check

Anyone can suggest a topic or quote for fact-check through this form. The VoxCheck team  reviews each submission and verifies it, subject to available  expertise and resources. Be sure to leave your contact details along with the suggested quote so that we can contact you, should we have questions.

Who makes VoxCheck

Our team includes a project leader, full-time analysts, volunteers and members of VoxUkraine Editorial Board. Analysts and volunteers collect politicians’ statements and check facts. VoxCheck Editorial Board approves the fact checks for publication.

Factcheckers

Olena Shkarpova, Project Leader, Editor Maksym Skubenko, Deputy Editor Oleksiy Krymeniuk, Junior Analyst
Svitlana Slipchenko, Junior Analyst, SMM manager Yar Batoh, Junior Analyst of VoxCheck, responsible for monitoring

VoxCheck Editorial Board

ilona Zholud veronika
Ilona Solohub, Kyiv School of Economics Oleksandr Zholud, NBU Veronika Movchan, Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting
Oleksandra Betliy, Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting Mariya Repko, Centre for Economic Strategy Dmytro Yablonovskyi, Centre for Economic Strategy

The process of fact-checking the politicians’ statements

 

 

  1. Analysts or VoxCheck volunteers collect politicians’ statements: we watch news releases and TV shows, monitor media and social media.
  2. The verification is based only on open data with the relevant links.
  3. Fact-checks should be concise, but comprehensive, and analyze only the actual statements within the specific context.
  4. Each fact-check is read through and edited by at least one full-time VoxCheck team member.
  5. An article can be published only if it is signed by two Editorial Board members.

VoxCheck assessments

TRUTH: THE INFORMATION IS CORRECT, THE DATA ARE PRESENTED IN THE APPROPRIATE CONTEXT

EXAGGERATION: THE INFORMATION IS TRUTHFUL IN ESSENCE, BUT THE FIGURES ARE EXAGGERATED BY AT LEAST 20% ABOVE THE REAL VALUE

MANIPULATION: THE INFORMATION IS TRUTHFUL IN ESSENCE, BUT PRESENTED IN AN INAPPROPRIATE CONTEXT OR TRUNCATED

LIE: THE INFORMATION IS DECEITFUL

TECHNICAL ERROR: THE INFORMATION IS ALMOST TRUTHFUL AND THE SPEAKER’S STATEMENT IS LIKELY TO BE JUST A SLIP OF THE TONGUE

NO ASSESSMENT: NO CONSENSUS ABOUT THE ASSESSMENT BECAUSE THE STATEMENT IS VAGUE OR THE DATA ARE LACKING.

Who funds VoxCheck

VoxUkraine is a non-profit non-governmental organization. Our activities are funded by charitable contributions of hundreds of people concerned with the future of Ukraine, as well as through international grants: Тhink Tank Fund, National Endowment for Democracy, PACT, International Renaissance Foundation, US Embassy, Natur Kultur, OSCE.

VoxUkraine annual reports are available here.

Moreover, VoxCheck Project regularly runs crowdfunding campaigns at Bigggidea crowdfunding platform. See the outcomes of our two campaigns here and here.

Error recognition policy

VoxCheck staff are humans, not robots, and everyone can make a mistake. Our work is organized in a way enabling us to filter out possible errors (see “How VoxCheck checks politicians”), however, sometimes they still get published. We are grateful to the attentive readers and respect the facts. If you believe that VoxCheck has checked the quote of a politician inaccurately, please email us at [email protected] Incorrect fact-checks will be reviewed again and updated on the voxukraine.org website with the corresponding mark.

VoxCheck independence

In March 2018, VoxCheck joined the International Fact-Checking Network fact-checkers’ code of principles. This means that VoxCheck has committed to the following:

A commitment to Nonpartisanship and Fairness. Signatory organizations fact-check claims using the same standard for every fact check. They do not concentrate their fact-checking on any one side. They follow the same process for every fact check and let the evidence dictate the conclusions. Signatories do not advocate or take policy positions on the issues they fact-check.

A commitment to Transparency of Sources. Signatories want their readers to be able to verify findings themselves. Signatories provide all sources in enough detail that readers can replicate their work, except in cases where a source’s personal security could be compromised. In such cases, signatories provide as much detail as possible.

A commitment to Transparency of Funding & Organization. Signatory organizations are transparent about their funding sources. If they accept funding from other organizations, they ensure that funders have no influence over the conclusions the fact-checkers reach in their reports. Signatory organizations detail the professional background of all key figures in the organization and explain the organizational structure and legal status. Signatories clearly indicate a way for readers to communicate with them.

A commitment to Transparency of Methodology. Signatories explain the methodology they use to select, research, write, edit, publish and correct their fact checks. They encourage readers to send claims to fact-check and are transparent on why and how they fact-check.

A commitment to Open & Honest Corrections Policy. Signatories publish their corrections policy and follow it scrupulously. They correct clearly and transparently in line with the corrections policy, seeking so far as possible to ensure that readers see the corrected version.

Moreover, VoxCheck as a member of VoxUkraine has its own ethical rules. VoxCheck project:

  1. Does not belong to any political party and does not support any politician or authority.
  2. Checks politicians regardless of their affiliation with the government or opposition;
  3. Is not funded by political forces;
  4. The amount of financing from one person may not exceed 10% of the annual budget of the project;
  5. The project staff, its volunteers and the Editorial Board may not be members of political parties;
  6. Our authors always reveal a conflict of interest, if any.