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Editor’s Note: Encyclo has not been regularly updated since August 2014, so information posted here is likely to be out of date and may be no longer accurate. It’s best used as a snapshot of the media landscape at that point in time.

is a fact-checking website that examines the statements made by American political figures and pundits. It is run by the Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times).

PolitiFact was in 2007, a project of  (who in 2013) and web developer Matt Waite. , it is an attempt to break down fact-checking to an elemental, data-based level, inspired by by EveryBlock founder Adrian Holovaty.

While it offers deeply researched narrative assessments of political claims’ veracity, PolitiFact is most well-known for its six-level ranking system, which classifies claims as “true,” “mostly true,” “half true,” “barely true,” “false,” and — most famously — “pants on fire.” The site also analyzes changes in politicians’ policy stances via its flip-flop assessor: “no flip,” “half flip,” “full flop.”

PolitiFact for its work on the 2008 election. It has done on a presidential debate via Twitter, and it is of 510 campaign promises made by President Barack Obama.

In early 2010, PolitiFact began to create new versions of its project. It launched with the Austin American-Statesman in January 2010 and with the Miami Herald in March 2010. As of February 2014, PolitiFact had partnerships with , including Georgia, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin. Its first international partner, PolitiFact Australia, . Partner news organizations pay $1,000 per month to PolitiFact for the service. It has also of a PolitiFact News Service that allows newspapers to subscribe to its national content. As of mid-2012, it had four full-time fact-checkers at its national office, plus 36 journalists working at its state sites.

In April 2010, PolitiFact began to evaluate statements of its guests each week. The site to fact-check the 2010 midterm campaigns and plans to work  to fact-check 2012 campaign speeches.

In October 2013, PolitiFact , a site dedicated to fact-checking the claims of pundits, columnist, bloggers, and talk show guests. The site was initially funded by $625,000 in grants from the Ford Foundation and the Democracy Fund.

In light of its success, some journalism observers have as a to the form of traditional accountability journalism. However, it has also been criticized as to its occasionally questionable rulings, particularly in light of its 2011 “Lie of the Year.”

PolitiFact has launched two mobile apps, one for $1.99 that had sold 24,000 copies as of August 2012 and the other for free.

A guided tour of PolitiFact:

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Primary author: Megan Garber. Main text last updated: February 27, 2014.
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Mother Jones is a nonprofit, liberal, bimonthly magazine that specializes in investigative reporting. Mother Jones was founded in 1976 and is based in San Francisco. In 2008, the magazine opened a Washington bureau with seven staff members. The bureau had a staff of 16 as of 2014, while the entire magazine had a staff of…

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The AndroidForMobile Journalism Lab is a collaborative attempt to figure out how quality journalism can survive and thrive in the Internet age.