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 22 August 2022 and Monday 29 August 2022.

735,885 Misinforming Tweets
New:+19,678 Trend:+13,558
78,316 Fact-checking Tweets
New:+88 Trend:-96
4,227 Fact-checks
140 Fact-checking Organisations

Key Content and Provenance

During the period between Monday 22 August 2022 and Monday 29 August 2022, 19,678 new URLs have been identified as potential misinforming content. Out of the 249 domains identified by Fact-checking organisations (Figure 1), most of the new shared URLs were from with an increase of +19,639 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 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 with a change of +13,577 compared to the previous total spread for the same domain whereas the domain that saw the least relative change was with a change of -63 compared to the previous period.

The all time most important domain is with a total of 521,892 URL shares and the least popular domain is 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 VoxCheck 19639 6062 521595 Taiwan FactCheck Center 5 5 4053 LeadStories 5 4 2459 LeadStories 5 2 8924 LeadStories 4 0 16342 Correctiv 4 0 918 Correctiv 2 6 1035 2 1 1505 LeadStories 2 0 6650 LeadStories 2 0 604

Table 1: Top misinforming content.

Fact-check URL Domain Current Week Previous Week Total 12 2 30 10 0 10 7 32 39 5 0 282 4 0 30 4 0 6 3 0 182 3 0 84 3 0 50 2 1 4

Table 2: Top fact-checked content.

Fact-Checkers and Spreaders Location

The data used for creating the Twitter dataset is obtained from 140 fact-checking organisations.

The largest amount of fact-checked content comes from VoxCheck (350 fact-checks) and the least from Verify Sy (1 fact-checks). Most fact-checked content are from (335) followed by LeadStories (255) and AFP fact checking (201) (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 Country in eastern europe. 79 201 152289
Russia Sovereign state in eastern europe and northern asia. 39 50 24632
United States of America Country located mainly in north america. 14 21 34154
Europe Continent. 13 62 35683
Germany Country in central europe. 12 29 10851
Mariupol City in donetsk oblast in southeastern ukraine. 10 0 1816
Moscow Capital and most populous city of russia. 8 4 10672
Luhansk Oblast Administrative division (oblast) in eastern ukraine. 7 0 2143
Turkey Sovereign state spanning europe and asia. 4 11 29920
Belarus Sovereign state in eastern europe. 4 10 6704

Table 3: Top locations mentioned in misinforming posts.

Person Description Current Week Previous Week Total
Volodymyr Zelenskyy Sixth and current president of ukraine. 11 65 52783
Vladimir Putin President of russia (1999–2008, 2012–present). 10 14 58125
French Citizens or residents of france. 5 0 914
Vadym Melnyk Footballer. 4 14 932
Joe Biden President of the united states since 2021. 4 1 4951
Donald Trump President of the united states from 2017 to 2021. 4 1 1904
Viktor Yanukovych Ukrainian politician who was the president of ukraine. 4 0 2229
Hunter Biden American lawyer, investment advisor, and second son of former vice president joe biden. 3 1 399
Anthony Fauci American immunologist and head of the u.s. National institute of allergy and infectious diseases. 2 0 6650
Alexei Navalny Russian lawyer, politician and anti-corruption activist. 2 0 23

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.