Journalist and author Matt Palumbo recently sat down with The Political Insider’s Brett Smith to discuss his upcoming book “Fact-Checking the Fact-Checkers: How the Left Hijacked and Weaponized the Fact Checking Industry“.
In his highly-researched work, Palumbo sets out to demystify the fact-checking industry, as well as point out examples of explicit bias and narrative spinning masquerading as truth.
During their conversation, Palumbo dove deep into the many topics readers should expect to explore more about in the pages of the book, and hopes they’ll have a broader understanding of how these fact-checkers are selected, who they really are, and what their agenda’s truly are.
The Straw That Broke the Camel’s Back
“So as someone who has been toe-to-toe with fact Checkers for years already, what was the final push that convinced you that discussing the liberal control of the fact-checking industry would make a good idea for your next book?” asked Smith.
“Well it’s one of those things where it’s just many years of annoyances where it ranges from, you know, posting a tongue-in-cheek internet meme to Facebook and then getting my account restricted for getting you know, a thing.” Palumbo said jokingly.
He mentioned how conservative radio host Dan Bongino’s Facebook page would routinely be listed as one of the top performing Facebook pages by a reporter at the New York Times, and from there it became a large target for liberal fact-checkers and journalists who set their sights on the contraband opinions.
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“The way it works is, Facebook, I think, formally Twitter not anymore, but mainly Facebook, will partner with all these various so-called back checking groups and they are the de facto arbiters of truth and if they see anything they don’t like they can they have the authority to attacha fact check to it now,” said Palumbo. “You might say ‘okay what’s the big deal? Okay they put a little note on your under your post, no one believes it anyway.’ Well, that is true, most people make fun of those kinds of warnings, but what it does is it restricts your page in that Facebook has an algorithm and if you have a million followers their algorithm will never put your posts in a million people’s feeds.”
And let us tell you, dear readers, The Political Insider has dealt with this many times. All the more reason to subscribe to our newsletter and avoid the censors.
“Every time you get a fact check at least for a few months, they dial back that percent and not only that, they’ll reduce monetization you get on videos you upload.”
Eventually though, after dealing with this for some time, things became personal when Palumbo became the target of fact-checkers regarding a piece he had written about how the population of illegal immigrants skews congressional representation in certain districts.
“It became personal because in addition to all of that, I wrote an article… and PolitiFact came back to me with ‘No that’s actually false it might be only two or three’ and I’m like okay well first of all that’s mostly true and ‘B’ they didn’t show their work, they just emailed some Professor whose opinion was, ‘it doesn’t sound right it might be lower.’”
Expert Farming and Not-S0-Expert Experts
Smith later asked how and where these fact-checkers are recruited, and whether or not they are actually credible experts in the fields they claim to be fact checking.
“I actually quote an insider [in] a Daily Wire article… and he said what a lot of these people would do is they ‘expert farm’ where they will email 10 experts, and you know, if conservatives say conservative things they just ignore it,” Palumbo added. “But if a conservative were to ever admit a fault in their own side or you know be like ‘I’m a conservative but I disagree on this conservative policy,’ they’ll elevate those people but then it gives them credibility of ‘well even conservatives say such and such.’”
One of the more troubling trends Palumbo noticed was who most of the fact-checkers he researched actually were.
“I noticed when going through the directory of who writes for PolitiFact and Snopes and these sites,” he continued, “It’s all like college kids. It’s like these 22-year-olds and listen, if you’re a 22-year-old, you know, economics major, I actually think you’re probably qualified to write fact checks in economics. But they make these kids be sort of jacks of all trades. So you have a 21-year-old named Jessica with a communications degree and she’s fact checking foreign policy and economics, and I’m like best case scenario, you can be an expert in one of these topics.”
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