Politifact Used as Important Political Honesty Detection Tool During Election Season

By Steve Byers

PolitiFact logoThe Diederich College is making an impact by proxy in the current Wisconsin election campaign. Several people with ties to the college are heading or participating in the Journal Sentinel’s PolitiFact Wisconsin, a development that was also reported in a nicely-written story by student Brooke Goodman published in the Marquette Tribune.

The Journal Sentinel’s effort is headed by alum Greg Borowski, the newspaper’s senior editor for projects and investigations, and has included contributions by Jim Nelson and Dave Umhoefer. All three have taught in the College in the past couple of years.

PolitiFact originated with the St. Petersburg Times, but the Journal Sentinel has adapted it to Wisconsin where it measures the truth of political advertising with rating ranging from “absolutely true” (rarely awarded) to “pants on fire” (thankfully, also rarely awarded). Much more prevalent are middling ratings such as “mostly true” or “barely true.”

It’s yet another instance of the College’s contribution to society in general.

Steve Byers is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Journalism at Marquette University’s Diederich College of Communication.

1 Response to “Politifact Used as Important Political Honesty Detection Tool During Election Season”


  1. 1 Jeremy September 20, 2010 at 3:28 pm

    Very happy to see the JS doing this. I feel this is very necessary in this age of politics where TV ads make an enormous difference, yet tell us little to nothing about the real issues. Glad to know MU is involved.


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The opinions expressed here are those of the individual authors and do not represent the views of Marquette University or the Diederich College of Communication.

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