Freedom Forum successfully completed a two-day training workshop on ‘How to combat false information online? – Be a verification Ninja’ in Kathmandu on 5-6 September 2022.

The workshop hosted by Freedom Forum and led by Fulbright specialist Linda Austin was conducted in collaboration with the Fulbright Commission Nepal. The workshop was conducted in five sessions.

First session deals with the identification of seven different types of misinformation and disinformation and importance of journalism in addressing those issues.

In the second session, participants were busy searching trends of false information on the internet and monitoring efficiency of passive search tools like Google, Facebook, etc.

Following this, the participants were acquainted with five pillars of verification: provenance, source, date, location and motivation. Similarly, on the second day and fourth session of the workshop, Austin guided the participants on the use of other skills such as reverse-image search, EXIF data, Google maps, etc.

Thereafter, in the concluding session the participants were taught as to why and how to debunk false information through their reporting.

Freedom Forum’s Executive Chief Taranath Dahal stated that the training workshop was useful for journalists to practice verified and credible journalism in this era of info-demic. “This is also a good opportunity to hone their skills to counter misinformation and disinformation and promote professional press”, he added.

Dahal expressed happiness to collaborate in this mission with the specialist Austin and Fulbright Commission for the development of professional and credible journalism in Nepal.

“The Nepali journalists who attended are smart, hardworking and enthusiastic learners. They understand the danger that false information online poses to democracy, and they are committed to enhancing their skills to combat it. I am so grateful to the Freedom Forum and the Fulbright Commission in Nepal for the opportunity to work with them toward that crucial goal,” said Fulbright Specialist Linda Austin.

“This workshop has been very useful. Verification skill is something every journalist should know, and this workshop training meets that objective,” said Nanda Lal Tiwari, online news coordinator at The Rising Nepal.

Total 20 journalists and fact checkers actively participated in the workshop. They were also enthusiastic about new skills they learnt during the workshop.