ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., Sept. 21, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Poynter Institute, a global leader in journalism, has tapped Alexios Mantzarlis as the first director and editor of the new International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN).
The IFCN will support and study the work of 64 fact-checking organizations spanning six continents, and it will be based at Poynter's headquarters in St. Petersburg, Florida. The International Fact-Checking Network project is being funded by grants from the Omidyar Network and the National Endowment for Democracy.
Mantzarlis will serve as both director of the organization and as the editor of a dedicated web channel for fact-checking on Poynter's site (www.poynter.org), which will highlight the best practices of fact-checking, and the impact of the work. Mantzarlis also will produce a weekly fact-checking newsletter.
"Poynter's mission is to advance journalistic excellence that serves democracy, and I can't think of a more appropriate or important initiative than the International Fact-Checking Network," said Poynter President Tim Franklin. "We've seen the huge impact of PolitiFact in the U.S. in recent years. Alexios and IFCN will foster the growth globally of this vitally important work that holds public officials accountable."
"I'm thrilled to join Poynter, whose world-class credentials in media research and training make it a perfect home for the IFCN," Mantzarlis said. "Studying the work of fact-checkers should yield interesting results not just for practitioners, but for anyone who cares about keeping the information we consume accurate - and the politicians who govern us accountable."
Mantzarlis has held key editorial leadership positions in the field of fact-checking, including his most recent post as managing editor of Pagella Politica, Italy's leading fact-checking website. He previously co-founded factcheckeu.org, Europe's first crowd-checking platform. In addition, he presented a weekly fact-checking segment on "Virus," a prime time television show on RAI, Italy's public broadcasting network.
He also played a pivotal role at the Poynter-hosted Global Fact-Checking Summit in London in 2014 and 2015, leading several sessions on the craft of fact-checking. In between the two meetings, he organized "global factcheckathons" in which he gathered fact-checkers from around the world to scrutinize international diplomatic meetings, like the G20 meeting in Australia.
"Alexios is not just an excellent fact-checker, he's also one of the best journalistic entrepreneurs I know," said Bill Adair, Knight Professor of the Practice of Journalism and Public Policy at Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy, who will also be an adviser for the new fact-checking network. Adair is also the creator of PolitiFact, the Pulitzer Prize-winning fact-checking site of the Tampa Bay Times.
"He not only understands how to present lively and vital accountability journalism, but he's created innovative ways to pay for this important work," Adair added. "He will bring great creativity and energy to the new fact-checkers' network."
Mantzarlis will begin his new position at the end of this month, while the International Fact- Checking Network is expected to debut on Poynter.org in October. For more information on the International Fact-Checking Network, click here.
About The Poynter Institute -- The Poynter Institute for Media Studies is a global leader in journalism education and a strategy center that stands for uncompromising excellence in journalism, media and 21st century public discourse. Poynter faculty teach seminars and workshops at the Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., and at conferences and organizational sites around the world. Its e-learning division, News University, www.newsu.org, offers the world's largest online journalism curriculum in 7 languages, with more than 400 interactive courses and 330,000 registered users in more than 200 countries. The Institute's website, www.poynter.org, produces 24-hour coverage of news about media, ethics, technology, the business of news and the trends that currently define and redefine journalism news reporting. The world's top journalists and media innovators come to Poynter to learn and teach new generations of reporters, storytellers, media inventors, designers, visual journalists, documentarians and broadcast producers, and to build public awareness about journalism, media, the First Amendment and protected discourse that serves democracy and the public good.
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