Fact-checkers tied to Pfizer

UncoverDCIn its “Trust Principles,” news organization Thomson Reuters pledges its obligation and commitment to “supply unbiased and reliable news services” to the many outlets it serves. Mr. Jim Smith represents Reuters as the company’s Chief Executive Officer. He is also a Director of Pfizer, Inc., serving on the company’s Board since 2014. Known as James C. Smith at Pfizer, he is a member of the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Partnering Against Corruption Initiative and the Forum’s International Business Council. Additionally, he serves on the International Advisory Boards of British American Business and the Atlantic Council.

Interestingly, Thomson Reuters Corp.—a $40 billion international multimedia company—is a significant and growing force in the “fact check” world, with a fact-checking unit based in its editorial department. Partnered with Facebook’s third-party fact-checking program since February 2021, the principal aim of the unit is to “fact-check visual material and claims posted on social media.”

What's the relevant line here from ethics rules? Something about avoiding even the appearance of impropriety?

However, regardless of ethics and financial interest, using "fact checkers" to label, block, censor, limit, ban users, or in any way prevent people from having an honest conversation online is improper. It's not up to Big Tech to be that annoying stranger inserting himself into a conversation between friends and appointing himself the arbiter of facts, the telling everyone else to shut up.

And don't forget, much of this "fact checking" was done at the request of government officials, making it also a 1st Amendment issue.

This entry was published Sun Feb 27 23:53:59 CST 2022 by TriggerFinger and last updated 2022-02-27 23:53:59.0. [Tweet]

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