• About MisinfoCon

    Building on the strength and momentum of our highly popular MisinfoCon events which have taken place at MIT and in London, Kyiv, and Washington DC, we’re thrilled to announce that MisinfoCon 5.0 will be taking place on Wednesday October 24 in London, UK.

     

    Hosted by the Mozilla Foundation and Hacks/Hackers, this event will highlight UK and European researchers, ideas and solutions. Featuring a consortium of powerful players in international policy, technology, journalism and media literacy, this gathering will help make important strides in exploring the implications of misinformation across the web, and identifying methods of fighting it.

    MisinfoCon London

    Rather than spending the convening focused on the current state of misinformation, MisinfoCon London will be centered around practical steps that the policy, academic, research and technology community can take towards building an internet we want. We will explore the indicators, tools and metrics that can be used to measure the success of campaigns addressing misinformation, and create collaborative opportunities to develop the frameworks we need to be confident in our successes.

     

    What do we mean by ‘success’ in combating and addressing misinformation challenges? Are we trying to cultivate and strengthen a decentralized web with more trust? More information? More access? Should we be measuring things like quality and diversity of conversations online? And if so, what are the indicators and metrics that help us measure these successes? How may these vary depending on the type of misinformation we’re hoping to address? By convening top researchers and practitioners from both sides of the Atlantic, MisinfoCon London aims to address the measurements of success we use to define our efforts against misinformation through interdisciplinary and international collaboration. In doing so, we aim to uncover the shared challenges in measuring success for disinformation and misinformation in US and EU contexts, as well as the unique differences between them, providing opportunities to learn from one another.

     

    We will invite individuals and organizations who can help us understand the current research landscape, and then break into smaller groups to make practical, tangible progress in answering questions about:

     

    • Misinformation across disciplines: How do the fields of health, environmental science, political science and computer science assess and respond to misinformation? In what ways do misinformation interventions focusing on building trust, changing information access, and improving information quality - and their indicators for success - differ across disciplines?

       
    • Effective collaborations that benefit users: What experiences are we designing for users & media consumers to address misinformation? How can journalists work with tech companies to assess the success of misinformation interventions? What metrics do newsrooms and publishing organizations use to measure success of information transfer, and what do users need to know about this? What are some relevant best-practices to share from newsrooms and journalists across the UK and EU?

       
    • Metrics for assessing misinformation interventions: What do existing tools and metrics for success look like? What tools might be needed but don’t exist, and how can we collaborate on building them? What psychology and behavioral science research insights can be applied? How can we we co-create a uniform set of standards to assess the quality of misinformation interventions?

     

    Hosting these critical discussions and connecting problem solvers from a wide variety of backgrounds will help us move the needle on one of the most important issues of our generation. At Misinfocon London, highlighting the work of prominent thought leaders from the UK and Europe, we hope to develop a shared vision for the metrics, indicators and frameworks needed to measure success in addressing misinformation.

     

     

  • 2018 Agenda

    speakers & workshops listed below

    9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

    Breakfast & MisinfoMap Icebreaker

    10:00 AM - 10:15 AM

    Opening Remarks

    10:15 AM - 12:55 PM

    Speakers, Q&A, Coffee

    12:55 PM - 1:55 PM

    Lunch & Tool Demos

    2:00 PM - 4:30 PM

    Workshop Sessions (Choose One)

    4:30 PM - 5:30 PM

    Workshop Sharebacks

    5:30 PM

    Closing Remarks

    5:30 PM - 9:00 PM

    Reception

    Salvador & Amanda
    Covent Garden, 8 Great Newport Street, London, WC2H 7JA

  • Speakers

    Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

    Director, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism Professor of Political Communication,

    University of Oxford

    Dr Rasmus Kleis Nielsen is Director of the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

    He is also Professor of Political Communication at the University of Oxford. He was previously Director of Research at the Reuters Institute and and Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Press/Politics.

    His work focuses on changes in the news media, on political communication, and the role of digital technologies in both. He has done extensive research on journalism, American politics, and various forms of activism, and a significant amount of comparative work in Western Europe and beyond.

    Recent books include The Changing Business of Journalism and its Implications for Democracy (2010, edited with David Levy), Ground Wars: Personalized Communication in Political Campaigns (2012), and Political Journalism in Transition: Western Europe in a Comparative Perspective (2014, edited with Raymond Kuhn).

    Julie Owono

    Executive Director, Internet Without Borders

    Julie Owono is a Lawyer and the Executive Director of Internet Without Borders, an organization defending Human Rights online, and an open Internet for all. At the intersection of Technology, business, and Human rights, her work focuses on building bridges and creating channels of collaboration between various actors of the digital space, including civil society, tech communities and governments, to foster the development of an Internet that benefits everyone, all over the world. She often speaks publicly on issues related to network disruptions, the impact of connectivity on societies, privacy, and digital inclusion. Her writing has appeared in Quartz, Al Jazeera, among others. She is a regular commentator on international news channels, including France 24 and BBC World.

    Elodie Vialle

    Head of the Journalism and Technology Desk,
    Reporters Without Borders

    Elodie Vialle is the Head of the Journalism and Technology Desk at Reporters without Borders. She reports on new threats on journalism in a digital world, such as disinformation and online harassment against journalists. Elodie is a Lecturer at leading French journalism graduate schools and have been a digital and editorial consultant for media outlets around the world, such as in Haiti. Elodie has been a reporter for Usbek & Rica, french review focused on exploring the future and the Editor-in-chief of an online media dedicated to social innovation cofounded by former Director of French newspaper Le Monde, Jean-Marie Colombani. She has been a columnist at National french radio France Inter and began as a TV journalist (BFMTV).

    Farida Vis

    Director, Visual Social Media Lab

    Professor of Digital Media, Manchester School of Art

    Director of the Visual Social Media Lab (VSML), which brings together researchers from academia and industry interested in better understanding the role of social media images. Since working closely with The Guardian in 2011 to better understand the role of rumours on Twitter at the height of the UK summer riots, her work has embraced data journalistic efforts. She has contributed to the Data Journalism Handbook and is a fellow recipient of an inaugural Data Journalism Award (2012) for the interactive visualisation tracking riot rumours. Other high-profile work has included a VSML rapid response report on the viral images of Alan Kurdi, the three-year old refugee boy who washed up on a Turkish beach in 2015. Current work includes a number of projects on visual mis- and disinformation with First Draft. Farida is Professor of Digital Media at the Manchester School of Art and sits on the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on Information and Entertainment (2016-2019), having previously served on the Global Agenda Council for Social Media (2013-2015). She is also a Director at Open Data Manchester, a thriving open data community in the North West.

    Franak Viacorka

    Consultant, United States Agency for Global Media

    Franak Viačorka works as the consultant for U.S. Agency for Global Media, U.S. federal agency supervising U.S. International broadcasters such as Voice of America and Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty. His focus is Russian disinformation, and he helps USAGM to enhance its operation in Europe and Central Asia. Recently he published research on Kremlin-backed Media, think-tanks, and NGO. He has served as a consultant for the U.S. Department of Defense.

     

    He concurrently works as the Creative Director of RFE/RL Belarus service. For many years he led the digital team and co-authored multiple award-winning multimedia projects, documentaries, and feature films. He is also the Vice President of the Digital Communication Network, global not-for-profit association connecting professionals of the digital age from a variety of backgrounds, in order to generate ideas, tools, and products for media outlets, civil society organizations, businesses, and public authorities.

    Joan Donovan

    Media Manipulation and Platform Accountability Research Lead, Data and Society Research Institute

    After completing her PhD in Sociology and Science Studies at the University of California San Diego, Joan Donovan was a postdoctoral fellow at the UCLA Institute for Society and Genetics, where she researched white supremacists’ use of DNA ancestry tests, social movements, and technology. For several years, Joan has conducted action research with different networked social movements in order to map and improve communication infrastructures. At Data and Society, she is the project lead on media manipulation.

    Adam Hickey

    Deputy Assistant Attorney General,
    US Department of Justice

    Adam S. Hickey is a Deputy Assistant Attorney General (DAAG) of the National Security Division (NSD) at the Department of Justice (DOJ). He oversees the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section (CES), including the FARA Registration Unit, and the Foreign Investment Review Staff. As the DAAG for National Asset Protection, he manages NSD’s efforts to combat national security threats to the private sector from computer intrusions and attacks, economic espionage, proliferation, malign foreign influence, and through foreign investment. Mr. Hickey also represents DOJ on interagency policy committees concerning cybersecurity. From 2013 to 2015, he was the Acting Deputy Chief for Cyber in CES and established NSD’s cyber program, supervising criminal investigations of foreign state actors for cyber activity affecting the private sector and critical infrastructure.

     

    Previously, Mr. Hickey was a federal prosecutor in the Southern District of New York, where he served as the Deputy Chief of Appeals. There he focused on national security cases involving terrorism and international drug and arms trafficking. Prior to joining DOJ in 2007, Mr. Hickey clerked for the Hon. Jed S. Rakoff of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, and the Hon. Robert A. Katzmann of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Mr. Hickey also practiced civil litigation and white collar defense in Manhattan. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Yale Law School.

    Phoebe Arnold

    Visiting Fellow, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism

    International Projects Coordinator, First Draft

    Phoebe Arnold is First Draft's International Projects Co-ordinator and a Visiting Fellow at the University of Oxford's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. She facilitates collaborative verification projects to tackle misinformation during elections around the world. Previously she was Head of Communications at Full Fact, the UK's leading independent fact-checking organisation, and was an Advisory Board member of the International Fact-Checking Network.

    Seema Yasmin

    Director, Stanford Center for Health Communication

    Seema Yasmin is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, medical doctor and author. She is an expert in health and science communication with a focus on how misinformation fuels epidemics. She trained in medicine at the University of Cambridge and served as an officer in the U.S. government’s Epidemic Intelligence Service where she investigated epidemics in maximum security prisons, American Indian reservations and border towns. Yasmin studied journalism at the University of Toronto and worked as a staff writer for the Dallas Morning News and a medical analyst for CNN. In 2017 she was a finalist for the Pulitzer prize for breaking news reporting for coverage of a mass shooting.

     

    Her first book, The Impatient Dr. Lange, is a biography of her mentor, an AIDS scientist, who was searching for a cure for HIV. He was killed on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. Her second book, Debunked!, dissects medical myths and pseudoscience.

    Stephanie Synder

    Engagement Consultant, Hearken

    Stephanie Snyder is an engagement consultant for Hearken, a company that helps over 100 news organizations around the world listen to their audiences. Before joining Hearken, Stephanie’s career in local journalism spanned newsrooms ranging from for-profit and nonprofit startups to traditional daily newspapers, where she gradually shifted from multimedia reporting to a focus on audience development and community engagement through public-powered journalism, events, social media and finding creative ways to connect with readers.

  • Workshops

    Attend one of these amazing afternoon workshops!

    Credibility indicators as nutrition labels

    Facilitated by: Factmata & Credibility Coalition

    Applying the Credibility Coalitions framework approach to indicators and data around information quality, this workshop focuses on discussions and deliberations to determine nutrition labels that can be used to express information quality of media. One way to start getting at the complexities around separating the bad from the good elements of a news post — or to use a food metaphor, the wheat from the chaff — is to think about how to express informational quality as a nutritional label. Taken in context, such as knowing the percentage makeup of salt or sugar in the package before you, these aspects can also be strong indicators or signals for food’s overall health value. So, then, what would be the “fat,” “salt,” or “sugar” then when it comes to information? And what percentages of such elements be?

    News integrity in multiple languages and brainstorming ways to scale it up

    Facilitated by: US Agency for Global Media

    This workshop focuses on recent efforts by US Agency for Global Media surrounding news integrity in different languages around the world. We will examine the challenges with doing fact-checking and ways that technology can be used to aid in the effort and deliver an excellent product to end users/consumers.

    Government decisions in addressing misinformation

    Facilitated by: US Department of Justice

    Exposure of foreign influence operations by a government may be one of the best ways to counter them, but doing so, especially in the context of an election, requires sensitivity, to avoid even the appearance of partiality to a particular candidate or party. Workshop participants will discuss a series of hypotheticals designed to surface the kinds of decisions government officials might have to make before disclosing, or “correcting,” misinformation.

    False News & Fringe Groups: Integrating deradicalisation strategies into anti-misinformation efforts

    Facilitated by: Logically

    During this workshop, participants will have the opportunity to explore the overlap between radical ideologies and the information ecosystem, and consider how deradicalisation strategies might be integrated into anti-misinformation efforts. Attendees will gain new perspectives on the value that a multidisciplinary approach can bring to attempts to stem misinformation, and creative ideas to implement in participants' respective fields.

    Crisis Scenario: You're the target of disinformation. Now what?

    Facilitated by: MediaMatters

    Many of us grapple with the question of how to effectively respond to moments of disorientation and harassment in situations when a group or individual is a direct target of an online disinformation campaign. Join Media Matters for a workshop that will examine the real-world effects of misinformation, especially in Europe, through the lens of being a disinformation target and spur new ideas for fighting back. We will explore two real-world case studies of misinformation campaigns -- foreign meddling in the final 72 hours of the 2017 French presidential election and an Irish journalist involuntarily becoming a validator of a foreign influence operation -- and work in small groups to develop crisis action plans for facing similar scenarios.

    Building inclusive networks and collaborative approaches to combat digital disinformation in electoral & political environments.

    Facilitated by: National Democratic Institute

    This workshop will examine strategies for developing diverse stakeholder networks to inform responses to, and mitigate the impact of, dis- and misinformation in political and electoral environments. Participants will be invited to help map the assets and needs that regional and in-country actors bring to their roles to protect and support the integrity of information in connection with significant political events, examining challenges and opportunities for collaboration from the perspective of journalists, election monitoring groups, political parties, fact-checkers, and technologists. The workshop will also explore strategies for sharing information among these stakeholders, quickly surfacing actionable information, and building global channels for collaborative monitoring and mitigation.

    Insights from participants will help to inform the development of the D4D Coalition - an early stage initiative aimed at better enabling the democracy community (e.g., election monitoring organizations, democracy organizations, political parties, election management bodies, and others) to mitigate tech-enabled threats and advocate to the tech industry and policymakers in order to protect the integrity of information in elections and advance other shared priorities.

    Visual Mis- and Disinformation

    Facilitated by: Visual Social Media Lab

    This workshop will work with participants to take a closer look at how to critically interrogate visual mis- and disinformation. It will introduce participants to an image ‘interpretation wheel’ that has been developed from methods arising from Art History and combining these with current approaches to debunking and analysing mis-and disinformation. Combined, a set of 20 questions and additional prompts have been combined into one visualisation that will be launched at this workshop. Using this interpretation wheel, we will look at a well-known example of visual disinformation and test how well this approach works for different stakeholder groups. Aligned with the focus of MisInfoCon London, the success of the adoption of this approach lies in its usefulness to different stakeholders. This a great setting for this critical assessment and participants will add important value.

    Vaccinating against Misinfodemics

    Facilitated by: Path

    The goal of this workshop is to address the difficulties faced by media organizations, journalists and information providers trying to communicate findings from new health research, highlighting the ease through which health misinformation can spread from scientific articles through various forms of media.

     

    We’ll first look at the journal abstracts of 5 new health research articles, and, in teams, create extreme misinformation and disinformation campaigns around those findings that might exist in a variety of media forms: on Instagram, through Whatsapp, in news media, in memes, or on Pinterest. We’ll review the misinformation campaigns created and try to understand why current formats of scientific abstracts lend themselves to research claims that can be misinterpreted or misrepresented in media, and the ways we might try to address them. Finally, we will create new templates for health research study abstracts that may accommodate for these “translation” issues through exploring questions such as: what are common terms used in abstracts that may not be familiar to journalists or broader publics? What would make understanding the applicability of new scientific research easier? Do we need a rat emoji front and center to highlight interventions that have only been researched with animal subjects?

     

    These new abstract drafts will be summarized in a blog post, with the ambitious goal of sharing findings with academic journals (like the Journal for Obstetrics and Gynecology, who already asks authors to provide a tweet-length summary) to highlight the need for a new abstract format better suited for online public consumption.

  • Contact Us

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