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The Fact-checking Observatory is an automatic service that collects misinforming content on Twitter using URLs that have been identified as potential misinformation by fact-checking websites. Using this data, the Fact-checking Observatory automatically generates weekly reports that updates the state of misinformation spread of fact-checked misinformation on Twitter.

This analysis is limited to URLs identified by Fact-checking organisations. The collected data only consist of non-blocked Twitter content and may be incomplete.

This report updates the status of misinformation spread between Monday 28 February 2022 and Monday 07 March 2022.

17,376 Misinforming Tweets
New:+7,398 Trend:+870
34,951 Fact-checking Tweets
New:+16,816 Trend:-1,085
1,444 Fact-checks
112 Fact-checking Organisations

Key Content and Provenance

During the period between Monday 28 February 2022 and Monday 07 March 2022, 7,398 new URLs have been identified as potential misinforming content. Out of the 115 domains identified by Fact-checking organisations (Figure 1), most of the new shared URLs were from afp.com with an increase of +6,322 compared to the previous total spread for the same domain The domain that saw the least increase in spread compared to the previous period total spread was ahram.org.eg with a change of +0 compared to the previous total spread for the same domain

In relation to the previous week, the domain that saw the biggest relative spread change was thefauxy.com with a change of +3,480 compared to the previous total spread for the same domain whereas the domain that saw the least relative change was twitter.com with a change of -1,152 compared to the previous period.

The all time most important domain is afp.com with a total of 13,524 URL shares and the least popular domain is alkhabrpress.com with 1 shares (Figure 2).

Figure 1: Domain importance.

Figure 2: Amount of domains shares per week.

The top misinforming content and fact-checking articles shared since the last report are listed in Table 1 and Table 2.

Misinforming URL Fact-check URL Domain Current Week Previous Week Total
https://thefauxy.com/pakistan-imposes-economic-sanctions-on-russia-refuses-to-repay-loans/ Taiwan FactCheck Center thefauxy.com 3480 0 3480
https://twitter.com/Kuduszaade/status/1498609584193347585 Verify SY twitter.com 2457 0 2457
https://twitter.com/AlertaNews24hrs/status/1499423808083660809 Mala Espina Check twitter.com 406 0 406
https://twitter.com/AlertaNews24hrs/status/1499178487596285954 Mala Espina Check twitter.com 278 0 278
https://twitter.com/jgnaredo/status/1499743794782261256 Mala Espina Check twitter.com 128 0 128
https://www.facebook.com/mike.corvus Demagog facebook.com 113 1 114
https://www.protothema.gr/politics/article/1217122/kleinei-gia-enan-mina-o-enaerios-horos-tou-evrou/ Ellinika Hoaxes (Greek Hoaxes) protothema.gr 89 0 89
https://twitter.com/benutandim2/status/1498385161158811652 Teyit.org twitter.com 74 0 74
https://sputniknews.com/20220306/nato-labelled-laptop-with-intelligence-found-at-ukrainian-nationalists-hq-dpr-head-says--1093639199.html euvsdisinfo.eu sputniknews.com 59 0 59
https://www.militaire.gr/evros-enaerios-horos/ Ellinika Hoaxes (Greek Hoaxes) militaire.gr 50 0 50

Table 1: Top misinforming content.

Fact-check URL Domain Current Week Previous Week Total
https://factual.afp.com/doc.afp.com.32477BL afp.com 1028 0 1028
https://factual.afp.com/doc.afp.com.324798T afp.com 573 0 573
https://verifica.efe.com/padre-despidiendose-hija-es-anterior-invasion-rusa/ efe.com 490 62 552
https://factual.afp.com/doc.afp.com.324797X afp.com 465 0 465
https://verifica.efe.com/zelensky-ucrania-ejercito-no-actual/ efe.com 444 333 777
https://www.boomlive.in/fact-check/fake-news-ukraine-russia-soldiers-wife-couple-goodbye-crying-war-fact-check-16934 boomlive.in 403 387 790
https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2022/feb/28/candace-owens/fact-checking-claims-nato-us-broke-agreement-again/ politifact.com 370 0 370
https://factual.afp.com/doc.afp.com.324A2PW afp.com 339 0 339
https://fullfact.org/europe/bbc-footage-russian-flyover-ukraine/ fullfact.org 327 200 527
https://factcheck.afp.com/doc.afp.com.323X8MJ afp.com 316 91 407

Table 2: Top fact-checked content.

Fact-Checkers and Spreaders Location

The data used for creating the Twitter dataset is obtained from 112 fact-checking organisations.

The largest amount of fact-checked content comes from euvsdisinfo.eu (154 fact-checks) and the least from Verificat (1 fact-checks). Most fact-checked content are from AFP fact checking (138) followed by Fact Crescendo (81) and Check Your Fact (59) (Figure 3).

Figure 3: Amount of fact-checks by fact-checkers.

Figure 4: Identified location of users spreading fact-checks and misinformation.

Locations and Mentions

Using automatic entity extraction methods, we identify key locations and persons mention in the fact-checking articles in order to identify what location and person are the most discussed in misinforming content.

The top mentioned locations and persons are listed in Table 3 and Table 4.

Location Description Current Week Previous Week Total
Ukraine Sovereign state in eastern europe. 18915 16123 35232
Russia Sovereign state in eastern europe and northern asia. 4985 792 5856
Pakistan Sovereign state in south asia. 3705 2 3707
Soviet Union Federal socialist state in eastern europe and northern asia (1922–1991). 2561 918 3525
United States of America Sovereign state in north america. 1879 2030 3959
Belarus Sovereign state in eastern europe. 1764 507 2293
Donetsk Capital city of donetsk oblast in estern ukraine. 1624 70 1694
Earth Third planet from the sun in the solar system. 1536 662 2198
Poland Sovereign state in central europe. 1480 202 1682
Moscow Capital and most populous city of russia. 1458 642 2100

Table 3: Top locations mentioned in misinforming posts.

Person Description Current Week Previous Week Total
Vladimir Putin 2nd and 4th president of russia. 7356 8762 16204
Volodymyr Zelenskyi 6th president of ukraine. 5064 3232 8364
Bashar al-Assad President of syria. 578 1 579
Denis Pushilin Ukrainian activist. 490 62 552
Viktor Yanukovych Ukrainian politician who was the president of ukraine. 484 83 567
Andrés Manuel López Obrador President of mexico. 479 79 558
Alexander Kott Russian film director and screenwriter. 465 0 465
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan President of turkey. 444 293 737
Marcelo Ebrard Mexican politician. 382 79 461
Boris Yeltsin Soviet and russian politician, 1st president of russia (1931-2007). 380 0 380

Table 4: Top people mentioned in misinforming posts.

Demographic Impact

Using automatic methods, Twitter account demographics are extracted for user age, gender and account type (i.e., identify if an account belong to an individual or organisation).

Figure 6 displays how misinformation and fact-checks are spread by different demographics.

Figure 5: Misinformation and Fact-check spread for different demographics. Top: Gender, Center: Age group, Bottom: Account type.

Data Collection and Methodology

The full methodology and information about the limitation and dataset used for this analysis can be accessed in the methodology page.