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About Gigafact

What we do

Gigafact is a non-profit network of nonpartisan, well-reputed local newsrooms that fact-check and verify influential claims circulating online. Gigafact seeks to put a big dent in the flow of misinformation on social media, while amplifying the voice of trusted local and expert newsrooms

Why

We live in a world with rampant online misinformation. But we also live in a moment when the supply of factual and well-sourced knowledge has never been greater if you know where and how to look. Gigafact creates new pathways to bring local, trusted authoritative sources flooding right to where consumers live on social media and other digital channels, to directly intercept unsupported claims before they have a chance to develop and travel.

How

Gigafact helps local newsrooms who join the network to implement a new standardized fact-checking editorial methodology via software tools, training, support and startup funding. Each week the newsrooms publish several short, sober and informative “fact briefs” that respond to influential claims and correct the record. Gigafact then assists in the amplification and distribution of those fact briefs to maximize the opportunity for the public to encounter them. This helps the newsrooms discover new audiences and growth opportunities. See one Gigafact newsroom talk about their experience here.


Donors to Gigafact

This list shows donors who have contributed $5,000 or more to Gigafact, and is updated quarterly.

Repustar (a benefit corporation targeting misinformation solutions, where the technology solution and concepts for Gigafact were incubated and tested)

Yuval Bar-Zemer

Mallika and Chandran Sankaran

M-K O'Connell

Leonetti/O’Connell Family Foundation

Dan Springer

Patrick J. McGovern Foundation

Google News Initiative

Skoll Foundation

Simone Otus Coxe

Donating

Gigafact has applied to become a 501(c)(3) organization. In the meantime, we are able to receive charitable contributions via a fiscal sponsorship arrangement with the Institute for Nonprofit News. If you are interested in supporting our work, you can make a gift to Gigafact here.


Gigafact Board of Directors

Chandran Sankaran (Co-founder)

John Marcom (Co-founder)

Kenneth Guernsey


Staff

Founder and CEO Chandran Sankaran

Chandran Sankaran provides overall guidance and direction for the development of Gigafact. He has also founded Repustar, an incubator of technologies to strengthen societal immune systems against online misinformation. He is a judge for the annual Mirror Awards for excellence in media industry reporting. Sankaran has previously been a successful software entrepreneur, having built two companies that helped change how corporations manage their supply chains and financial management processes. He graduated from Yale University with a Master's degree in Computer Science. He received an undergraduate engineering degree from the Indian Institute of Technology in Madras where he was the recipient of the Governor’s Medal. Sankaran is based in the San Francisco Bay Area, and has lived and worked across continents.

Co-founder and Head of Operations Robyn Sundlee

Robyn leads the day-to-day operations of Gigafact. She is responsible for building and building and supporting the network, guiding our product roadmap, and ensuring high impact results for network members’ fact briefs. Robyn is a former researcher at USC’s Annenberg School of Journalism, where she taught undergraduate and graduate classes on journalism and propaganda. Prior to that, she worked as a campaign manager in Alaska and as a public affairs consultant with the National Journal in Washington, DC. Robyn holds a BA in international relations and an MA in public affairs from Brown University.

Editorial Manager Austin Tannenbaum

Austin oversees the onboarding and training of new newsrooms that join the network, ensuring ongoing compliance with editorial guidelines. He has been involved in all aspects of writing and editing fact briefs and helping shape the editorial guidelines from the early days of Gigafact. Austin is a journalist with a background in sustainability. He worked as a reporter for Environment and Energy Leader and the senior editor for Electric Car Insider before joining Gigafact. Austin has a BA in environmental advocacy from the Johnston Center for Integrative Studies at the University of Redlands, and is currently pursuing an MA in creative publishing and critical journalism from the New School for Social Research.


Testimonials

“In the years that we’ve been studying the rise of misinformation, we’ve realized there simply aren’t enough fact-checks to counter all the falsehoods. Gigafact is addressing this head-on with a wonderfully simple approach that should yield a dramatic increase in fact checks.”

–Bill Adair, Founder, PolitiFact; Knight Professor of Journalism and Public Policy, Duke University

“Gigafact is seeking to really accelerate the success we have had with the fact-checking journey so far, by growing the community, providing them essential tools, support and funding, and empowering local news and other credible sources to become fact-checkers. The time is right for this kind of vision, action and expansion.”

–Baybars Orsek, Fmr. Director, International Fact-Checking Network

“I spend a lot of time thinking about the future of news and journalism, and I love what Gigafact is trying to do: Bring high quality journalism into a system that quickly intercepts misinformation and disinformation before it spreads too far online. It’s a vitally needed service.”

–T. Christian Miller, two-time Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter

“Our research shows that we can improve students' ability to sort fact from fiction online by teaching them the strategies of professional fact checkers. Making fact-checks ubiquitously available, as Gigafact seeks to do, will be an invaluable resource for digital literacy.”

–Joel Breakstone, Director, Stanford History Education Group

“My research shows that correction of online claims, when done with evidence, quickly, and publicly, effectively reduces belief in misinformation, especially among the large audiences that social media facilitates. Generating more fact checks therefore empowers users, giving them accessible and accurate information they can use to correct one another, and creating downstream effects to reduce misperceptions in the broader public.”

—Leticia Bode, Associate Professor of Communication, Culture, and Technology, Georgetown University