Let's factcheck the election!

Do you trust the information you get? We're an independent, non-partisan, fact checking charity and we want to factcheck the election.

They did it!


On 27th Feb 2015 we successfully raised

£33,069

of £25,000 target
with

1297 backers

in

28 days



New stretch target

CLICK HERE FOR OUR OUR EU REFERENDUM WORK

 

Our Crowdfunding campaign has come to an end...

We ended at 5:12pm on the 27th of February with £33,096! Thank you all so much!

You can still donate to us at fullfact.org/donate/ as a charity we rely on your donations. We can't promise you any stressballs or mugs, but your donations will go towards making sure factchecking is an integral part of our society.

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We are over the moon!

We've hit our target of £25,000, all thanks to an amazing 947 of you who care enough about factchecking the election to part with your money. We're really excited about starting the election campaign with such strong support behind us.

But here's the thing...

With an extra £15,000

1. We'll be able to factcheck more comprehensively. 

Instead of pursuing only headline figures we can cast our net wider. We've been working out how to monitor TV automatically: with extra money we can develop the capacity to monitor shows like Question Time, Newsnight or Dispatches too.

2. We'll be able to give you factchecking in more than just article format We can do audio, video and graphics that politicians and your friends will pay attention to. We were on the Distraction Pieces podcast with Scroobius Pip, and we'd like to set up our own podcast for the election, one for every week that we're in the hub. Also, we want to do something like this to adverts, party election broadcasts and major debates. But better. We want to introduce the world to the videocheck.

If you would like to see this happen, please pledge and share the campaign with your friends. We're not done yet!

We’re Full Fact...

The UK’s independent, non-partisan, factchecking charity and we want to factcheck the 2015 General Election.

To do this we need £25,000 to kit out our election hub and make sure we have the manpower to let no claim go unchallenged.

We want to factcheck from 6am to midnight, every day, for six weeks of the campaign.

What will you actually use the money for? 

Since November 2014 we've been amassing a small army of volunteers and building links with some of the country's top research organisations to help us get ready for the election. But now we can't actually fit everyone in our office, so 3Space have given us this enormous place on Oxford Street to use during the election period. At the moment it's empty. 

We need to kit out this room, pay volunteers’ expenses and get our experts on the airwaves as much as we can during the election.

There are two main costs for us to factcheck the election:

  1. Start-up costsThis includes setting up the hub and kitting it out with reliable computers, quick internet lines and monitoring tools. 
  2. Day-to-Day costsThis includes supporting volunteers and transporting our experts to and from SKY, BBC and ITV so they can tell us the real story! Factchecking for 18 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 6 weeks adds up! Take newspapers for example: each day we need £30 worth of newspapers to stay on top of the claims being made. Over 6 weeks that adds up to £1260. 

What have you done already?

  • We pioneered live-factchecking on BBC Question Time, Sky News, the European Parliament debates, the Scottish referendum debates and the party conference leaders' speeches
  • We were crucial to getting the Daily Mail and Sun to set up corrections columns. (Yes, they really have them!)
  • We not only factcheck - we also do something about incorrect claims. We've secured corrections from Ministers, government departments, MPs, the BBC, pressure groups and national newspapers. 

Factchecking the election is the next logical step. This is what we've been building up to!

Why do you factcheck? 

76% people think it’s extremely important that MPs tell the truth but only 26% people trust them to do so. So even when they are telling the truth, many of us switch off.

Our votes matter more than that. We need to know what to trust and what not to trust — and who’s got time to check everything themselves?

Full Fact makes it possible to make up your own mind, based on information you can trace. We’ve lost count of how many times we’ve been told “you’re the only ones asking” by a press office — but somebody has to be asking.

And then we go further, getting inaccurate claims corrected and confusing research clarified. When claims get repeated a lot they can do real damage, and that’s something we can stop.

How are you different?

We're different because we don’t care how you vote. Our work is entirely non-partisan. Our agenda is helping everyone have equal access to the facts. As a charity, it's the law that we aren't allowed to take political sides.

Our articles don’t dumb down or reduce everything to meaningless soundbites. We look at every side of the argument and present the facts so that you can make up your own mind.

We won't ask you to take our word for it: all our factchecks have links to sources so you can judge the issue for yourself.

If that is something you want during the election we need you to...

 

What do the rewards mean?

Friends Wall: A page on our website with your name on it. It will pay tribute to everyone who makes factchecking the election possible. We'll also write your name, or pin up your picture (send it to us at friends@fullfact.org) on our actual wall in the election hub! If you prefer, we can keep your name confidential too - just let us know. 

Post cards: "Support grows for the war on error". Get a pack of post cards and join the fight.

Stressball: Get to grips with the election with our Full Fact stressball. You’ll need it.

Mug: Put your feet up and relax. Enjoy a cuppa in your very own Full Fact mug.

Tweet: We have over 20 thousand followers on Twitter and we want to tell everyone about your generosity.

Election Party: Join our team and raise a glass as the results roll in and celebrate the most informed election yet!

Adopt-a-fact: You can pick a fact from our database, and we will update you if we do any more work in this area. We'll use our monitoring system to keep you updated on where it's popping up and what we're doing about it. 

Post-Game Analysis: A personalised report, and a chance to join our team for a session looking back at how we did, what we learned and what we'll do for the next referendum or election.

Who will do the factchecking? 

Full Fact Staff

First of all there's our own team, including five researchers who specialise in health & social care, education, immigration & crime, the economy, and the law. 

Expert Volunteers

The Office for National Statistics and Ipsos Mori are sending some of their statisticians and researchers to volunteer in the hub, and we're working with the Royal Statistical Society and others to recruit more individual experts. These people have good knowledge of the topics that will come up, and the sources of information we'll use to check them - so we'll be able to factcheck more claims, faster.

Partner Organisations 

We've been working for two years now to create links with some of the best research organisations in the country. They have all agreed to work with us during the election - imagine an election where the experts are actually heard for once! 

We'll be working with The Migration ObservatoryThe Health Foundation, The National Foundation for Educational Research, The Institute for Criminal Policy Research, NatCen Social Research

Examples of our Factchecks…

Is our EU membership fee £55 million?

What you need to know to know about the Treasury's tax statement 

Does smoking cost as much as it makes for the Treasury?

Are ‘illegal immigrants’ eligible for over four times more in state aid than pensioners?

How do you make sure you aren't biased?

We have a cross party board of Trustees with the three big political parties represented. They have extensive experience in politics and journalism. As a charity, it's the law that we aren't allowed to take political sides.

We make sure we monitor fairly. One of the big challenges of the election is simply making sure we've got a good overview of what all sides are saying to avoid seeing more from one side than from others.

We have rules about the kinds of things we can write, and how we write them; we're open about our funding; and one day, with your help, we'd like to make sure that nobody provides more than 15% of our income.

All staff must complete a declaration of personal interests before they start work here. Our staff aren't allowed to express opinions about political parties or issues. Volunteers will be asked to provide similar declarations. 

How are you funded?

Full Fact is a charity, independent of the government and political parties. We rely on individual donations, and grants from charitable trusts, with a small amount of income coming from carefully-chosen commissioned work that doesn't present a conflict of interest. We don't accept funding from the government and when we take paid research we try to make sure the researcher doesn't know who the client is.

We are grateful for funding from: the Nuffield Foundation, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, Barrow Cadbury Trust, the Peter Samuel Charitable Trust, JRSST-CT, and the City of London Corporation. We are also grateful to our Chairman, Michael Samuel, for his past and continuing financial support, and most of all to everybody who donates and helps make sure we can stay in business and stay independent.

Endorsements 

“…..a beacon of accuracy and meticulousness in a world where half-truths and unsubstantiated assertions are all too common.” Chris Berthoud, BBC News digital impact   "the work carried out by Full Fact is extremely important and I am pleased to recognise that Full Fact can claim to be one of the organisations that does seek to ‘guard the guardians’.” Lord Justice Leveson in his report on press practices and ethics   "No longer can pressure groups, politicians or journalists get away with erroneous declarations" Royal Statistical Society's Statslife magazine   "that valuable organisation Full Fact" Peter Hitchens, The Mail on Sunday   "an invaluable service for our audience" Political Editor, LBC radio   "Full Fact is an organisation that specialises in checking the claims of politicians and the media. So the panel had better watch out. Maybe we should have Full Fact on all the time?" David Dimbleby, BBC Question Time   “Full Fact have systematically followed a number of policy debates and used existing machinery to try to hold politicians, civil servants and journalists to account…” The Jury of the Political Studies Association 2013. Transparency Award Winner.   "Without the confidence provided by Full Fact's analysis ITV News would not have been able to broadcast our investigation" Ed Campbell, Senior News Editor, ITV News     "I think I need you sitting beside me every time I interview a politician" Iain Dale, LBC radio   "the admirable Full Fact" Juliette Jowit, The Guardian   "The team at Full Fact proved an essential part of our online offering for one of the defining political events of the year. Their live blogging and instant scrutiny of the claims made by Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage provided an invaluable service for our audience and added real gravitas to our online offering." Tom Cheal, Political Editor, LBC Radio

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