Fake: Poroshenko on the Unity of Russia and Ukraine

Fake: Poroshenko on the Unity of Russia and Ukraine

In June 2015, several Russian and pro-Russian media falsely reported that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko told Ukrainian Radio First Channel: “No doubts that the Russian and Ukrainian nations are a single Slavic nation.” This news appeared June 19-21 on the site of the pro-Russian social movement “Ukrainian Choice” and on other sites, including politrussia.com, e-news.su, novorosinform.org, yaplakal.com, ukrop.dn.ua, pravdanews.info, and donbass.media. Some media cited Israeli news agency Arutz 10 as

Is counter-propaganda the only antidote to propaganda?

Russia Today is packed full of lies. But aren’t there motes aplenty in our own eyes onto the world? Is media credibility shot, and can we hope to improve trust in news?  An academic conference this autumn in Prague aims to bring journalists and acdemics together to explore the problem This fall’s conference – Populism, authoritarianism, and the media: The age of mediocracy and mediacracy – will take place in Prague,

Searching the Earth: Essential geolocation tools for verification

By Eliot Higgins from Bellingcat, for The First Draft As verification and open source investigation techniques and methodologies have developed over the last few years, so have the various tools and platforms used to access the information that makes this kind of work possible. In this article, we examine some of these tools, and the different uses they have in the verification and investigation process. Googling Earth For many investigations,

Russia’s Stalinist Diplospeak

A Russian linguist closely examines how the Russian Foreign Ministry’s communication has resurrected the creepy old Soviet style. Russian is a tough language to learn not because of the complex tenses and six cases, but because the style of communication is what matters most. The Russian style not only expresses the mood of the speaker or writer, a certain political situation, or the time and circumstances of the moment; the

Chechen’s Comments Manipulated to Prove Murder of Donbas Civilians

By taking a comment entirely out of context, separatist and Russian media reported on July 24 that pro-Kyiv Chechens fighting in eastern Ukraine allegedly confessed to the “murders of civilians of Donbas.” This information was published by novorosinform.org, novorossia.su, Russkaya vesna-novosti, Patriotic Forces of Donbas, Politnavigator, Ridus, and others. These reports refer to comments made by a Chechen, who introduced himself to Britain’s Guardian simply as “Muslim.” He is quoted as

Ekho Moskvy Faces Loss of Economic Independence

Ekho Moskvy has been turned down for a request to its shareholders for a loan of 100 million rubles for six months, RBC.ru reported, citing a news item on the radio’s web site. A minority of shareholders blocked the request, “acting editor-in-chief Vladimir Varfolomeyev” was quoted as saying in the brief message, characterizing the terms of the loan as “cabal-like.” It was not known why Varfolomeyev was described with the

Fake: Saakashvili’s Adviser Has Israeli Citizenship

Separatist sites have distorted comments made by Mariya Gaidar, the newly appointed Deputy Governor of Odesa Oblast, about her application for Israeli citizenship. The false information was then disseminated by Novorosia News Agency, Nabat, S-Narodom, and Novorosia-Inform, among others. The text among the reports is almost identical: “Mariya Gaidar started to prepare documents for Ukrainian citizenship. The Deputy Governor of Odesa Oblast herself has told about this today. She has

Fake: American Missiles Found in Luhansk

On July 22, Russian and separatist media falsely reported that American surface-to-air missiles had been found in a Luhansk airport storehouse. News agencies cited LPR Today as their source after LPR published a video allegedly showing the discovery of American (SAM) FIM-92 Stinger missiles. According to the so-called general prosecutor’s office of the Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR), the Ukrainian Army, withdrawing from the Luhansk airport in 2014, left the weapons

Fake: OSCE Claims Donetsk Shelled by Ukrainian Army

On July 21, Russian and Ukrainian media wrongly reported that the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission had concluded that Donetsk’s center had been shelled on July 18 from an area controlled by the Ukrainian Army. The story was featured in the Russian newspaper Vesti and by television channel NTV, among others. However, this is not at all what the OSCE concluded. The original report of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, dated

Russia Says Twitter Doesn’t Need to Comply With Its New Data-Localization Law

State officials have announced that Twitter can ignore a new law coming into force on September 1 that will require online services to store all Russian user data on servers located inside Russia. On July 17, Alexander Zharov, the head of Roskomnadzor, the Kremlin’s media watchdog agency, told the press that federal censors don’t consider the kind of user data Twitter collects to qualify as “personal information” under the new

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