SCAM Team @ International Communication Association (ICA) Conference, 2023

Members of the SCAM team recently attended and presented at the 73rd Annual ICA conference, the well-known communications research conference. ICA was held in Toronto, Canada this year. The SCAM team met to attend and present, but also for project planning and advisory meetings.

Two team members presented at the Global Fact Checking Movement pre-conference, organized in part by SCAM team member Lucas Graves.

  • Oscar Westlund presented a paper entitled “What is the problem with misinformation? Fact-checking as a sociotechnical and problem-solving practice“. This paper draws from 50+ interviews conducted in the earlier stages of the project, conceptualizing fact-checking as a sociotechnical and problem-solving practice. This paper outlines main themes from these interviews, including limited agency on platforms and hostility toward fact-checking actors. Valérie Bélair-Gagnon, Lucas Graves, Rebekah Larsen, and Steen Steensen are also contributors.
  • Rebekah Larsen presented an in-progress project entitled “Connecting the global fact-checking field and technological development: A technographic case study of the InVID/WeVerify plugin“. This project traces the development of InVID, a ‘Swiss army knife’ of verification tools that has developed in concert with the rise of fact-checking. Steen Steensen, Oscar Westlund, Bente Kalsnes, and Lasha Kavtaradze are also contributors.

During the ICA conference, PhD candidate Reidun Samuelsen also presented a paper entitled “The Relevance of Technology to Information Verification: Insights From Norwegian Journalism During a National Election”. This paper examines how Norwegian journalists have responded to the push for technological up-skilling relevant to counter disinformation during an election campaign. The findings are based on a survey of Norwegian journalists in addition to participatory observations and interviews in three different newsrooms. Fieldwork took place during the Parliamentary election in 2021, focusing on journalists’ verification of sources and information during election time. Steen Steensen and Bente Kalsnes are also contributors to this paper.

While in Toronto, team members met multiple times to plan the final year of the project, as well as to discuss deliverables with members of the advisory team. Matt Carlson (University of Minnesota), Seth Lewis (University of Oregon), and Edson Tandoc Jr. (Nanyang Technological University) were all able to attend, providing invaluable insight and feedback on the work packages.

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