Google, FYT Tips for Students, Community Journos How to Fact-check Vaccine Info Online

Google Tips for Students How to Fact-check
Respected Filipino journalists Atom Araullo, Kara David, and Voltaire Tupaz are joined by UP professor Yvonne Chua in the Google and FYT webinars. Event screengrabs.

Google and FYT are teaching students how to fact-check online vaccine information with the use of journalism practice tips and advanced internet search.

The internet company and media group partnered for a two-day webinar attended by thousands of students and community journalists across the Philippines.

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Filipino journalists Atom Araullo, Kara David, and Voltaire Tupaz were joined by University of the Philippines professor Yvonne Chua, Dr. Beverly Ho of the Department of Health, and Trinna Leong of Google News Initiative in the Google and FYT webinars held January 28 and 29, 2022.

“As Filipinos rely on social media platforms in receiving information about the pandemic and the ongoing vaccination efforts, it is crucial to verify the information we see online before sharing it with others,” Google stated in a media release about the YouTube webinars.

Here are some tips from FYT and Google’s #FYTCOVID19: Fighting vaccine misinformation webinar:

Use Google Search operators
These are short commands that help filter Search results. To find exact matches, enclose Search queries in quotation marks. Using the “+” and “-” symbols between two terms will include or exclude related matches, respectively. You can also limit results from a specific website by using “site:”, or view results from a specific time range by choosing “custom range” in the Tools option. For a complete list of search operators, click here.

Confirm when a post was uploaded
The date and time of when a post was uploaded are important when relating a source to a context. This is usually easily identifiable on some social media platforms, where hovering over the date and time or selecting “Inspect” allows you to view precise upload details. You can also use InVid to verify the exact local upload time of YouTube videos.

Use reverse image search
Images or footage can be easily used in the wrong context. There are a lot of available tools online to verify the original source of an image such as Google Image Search, Yandex, Bing, Tineye, and Reveye among others. For videos, InVid’s verification plugin allows the extraction of multiple keyframes and does a reverse image search on them.

Identify the geolocation
Sometimes, a simple reverse image search can help identify where a photo or video was taken in order to verify if an incident took place where it claims to have happened. If not, it will be helpful to look out for street layouts, statues, and monuments, architectural details, street signs and shopfronts, license plates, as well as terrains and topographies.

Be keen on details when watching videos
Be sure to watch videos right through because details can be crucial. Watch out for camera movement and take time to pause to catch the decisive view you need. You may also use the apostrophe and period keys to advance or reverse frame by frame. Most importantly, don’t forget to listen – you may be able to pick out place names, accents, dialects.

Utilize Google Maps
If you cannot be physically present in a certain location, you may use Google Maps’ Street View. You may even view old street view images of the same location through the “historical view” function.

To learn more on how to fact-check vaccine information, head on over to the FYT YouTube channel and watch the free “#FYTCOVID19: Fighting vaccine misinformation” webinar to hear from experts from the health sector, the academe, esteemed journalists, and Google.

WATCH DAY 1 | #FytCOVID19: Fighting Vaccine Misinformation here:

WATCH DAY 2 | #FytCOVID19 :Fighting Vaccine Misinformation here

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The Good News Pilipinas Team is a group of Filipino journalists who advocate putting more good news stories about the Philippines and Filipinos on the media.