We are pleased to announce that De Facto has become the latest member of the EU Observatory for disinformation (Social Observatory for Disinformation and Social Media Analysis – SOMA). This comes as a recognition of our work on mis- and disinformation, and will provide a valuable contribution to SOMA’s efforts in fact-checking and tracing disinformation. With De Facto, we can add an extra explanatory layer of the possible motivation behind an investigated disinformation attempt, and the cognitive science basis on which such manipulation is constructed for maximum impact. With De Facto on board, SOMA receives a committed partner with long-term perspective and strong professional drive for furter exploring this field and for coming up with novel solutions to fight disinformation and keep the public aware, informed and better protected. Our main focus remain on education and training, and we will be looking into ways of aligning SOMA methods with our own De Facto toolbox, and will develop new and improved tools based on this new partnership.

De Facto now has access, following struct rules and due process, to a dedicated collaborative platform where SOMA members conduct their investigations. The platform is based on Twitter and is known in the media circles as CrowdTangle (closed-access platform, members only) and it is widely used by investigative journalists and fact-checkers. There is a range of other tools available to us now, and we are debating internally what would be the best strategy forward. We are looking forward to sharing this experience with all De Facto partner organisations and associates.

We thank our new SOMA family for doing us the honour of accepting our membership application.