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🚨 How EDMO Hubs use XWiki to fight disinformation

09 Apr 2024 5 min read

Written by

The XWiki Team

Disinformation campaigns are a major challenge in Europe and fighting against them requires a coordinated response from states, institutions, news agencies and each of us at individual level. As a result, the European Commission has come up with several initiatives to combat disinformation. The European Media Digital Observatory (EDMO) is one of them. 

EDMO is a European multidisciplinary community gathering digital literacy experts, media practitioners, academic researchers, fact-checkers, and other relevant actors. It consists of 14 hubs covering all 27 EU member states as well as Norway. The main purpose of all the hubs is to actively detect, analyze, and expose disinformation campaigns across Europe, while improving public awareness, providing tools for detecting fake news, and designing effective responses for local audiences.

XWiki SAS provided the technical solution for the following 3 EDMO hubs: DE FACTO, ADMO, and BROD. Read on to discover how we built these hubs on top of XWiki in the form of 3 public websites with advanced content management features for the publication, management, fact-checking, and tracking the dissemination of disinformation. 

πŸ“˜ About DE FACTO

DE FACTO is the French hub that unites fact-checkers, researchers, and educational entities to fight disinformation in France by means of tutorials, analyses, and tools to decipher fake news. The hub aims to provide a pluralistic, open and independent platform that focuses on the challenges of information in the digital age and facilitates the verification and media education in this key EU region. This platform brings together fact-checks from the leading French media: French Press Agency (also known as AFP), 20 Minutes, Libération, Les Surligneurs, and France Info.

πŸ“• About ADMO

ADMO stands for Adria Digital Media Observatory and is the umbrella name for the Croatian and Slovenian hub operation for tackling disinformation and cooperation with EDMO. The hub brings fact-checked information, media literacy training programs, and research. The project also aims to encourage governments and regulators to strengthen the collective response to disinformation threats to democracy.

πŸ“— About BROD

BROD stands for Bulgarian-Romanian Observatory of Digital Media. It brings together renowned researchers, media literacy providers, journalists, and policy partners active in the region, and the biggest fact-checker worldwide, AFP, with its fact-checking operations in Bulgaria and Romania. They also provide tools, videos, tutorials, articles, and other educational resources created by the hub’s partners aiming to assist teachers, journalists, and citizens in enhancing their media literacy and competences.

πŸ”Ž The challenge

The future hubs needed a technical solution with a wide range of tools for writing, publishing, and crosschecking information that would later act as the foundation for the development of digital hubs for other European regions.

🚦 The requirements

The technical solution had to meet the following requirements:

  • Provide a tool to unite fact-checkers, researchers and educational institutions to fight disinformation;
  • Be hosted and have the infrastructure to ensure publication exchanges with the central EDMO Hub;
  • Handle rights for a variety of user groups and stakeholders;
  • Provide technical features for a manual and automatic editorial process to publish and enrich fact-checks;
  • Provide a powerful search feature with multiple filters;
  • Structure information into pre-defined sections and templates that can be repurposed for other hubs;
  • Support the insertion of dynamic tweets, videos, diagrams;
  • Provide web mining tools to extract data and store it in a data repository in order to track how information is spread.

🎯 The XWiki solution

The solution we implemented was a public website with content management features for the publishing flow for DE FACTO, that would meet the needs described above. Later on, this solution has been validated and used for ADMO and BROD as well. To address all the requirements, we carried out the following services:

βœ… Hosted, installed, and set up a public wiki with a standardized structure and sections for replication in other hubs;

βœ… Customized the website's structure and design;

βœ… Developed and customized the following features:

  • RSS feed connected with fact-checker partners to automatically import articles;
  • Carousel template aimed at promoting specific content;
  • Social media macro to share content on various social networks;
  • Contrib extension that allows to create a Quiz section in which several quizzes created by Les Surligneurs can be integrated;
  • Powerful search features with filters that allow users to browse fact-checks by topic, fact-checking organization, keyword, publication date;
  • Multiple web mining tools for collecting, structuring, and analyzing data from a variety of sources;
  • ClaimReview metadata for tracking how disinformation is disseminated;
  • Integration of AFP and Sciences Po médialab tools for adding metadata about disinformation propagation metrics on social networks;
  • Installation of the Matomo analytics tool, an alternative to Google Analytics that is privacy-friendly, thanks to its open-source nature.

Discover more XWiki custom use cases

XWiki-defactoSS.webp

The XWiki open-source platform has proven itself to be the right choice for the BROD hub. It seamlessly supports content and navigation in three different languages, provides easy connection to EDMO, and acts as a central repository for our fact-checks, media literacy materials, and research results. Publishing new content is very intuitive and fast, which is particularly important for our news section. In addition, BROD builds on the technical components and fact-check metadata format co-created by XWiki in the French EDMO Hub DE FACTO and the Adriatic Hub ADMO. - Kalina Bontcheva, EDMO Advisory Board

XWiki-BRODSS.webp

πŸ“ Final thoughts

With its values of openness, transparency, and decentralization, open-source software has a significant role to play in the way information is managed, checked, published, and debated. That is why, for us, taking part in these European hubs fighting disinformation is paramount, and it aligns with our company's values.

Eager to discover how XWiki, as an innovative and open solution, contributed to the creation of an information ecosystem that is transparent and relies on strong, decentralized, and accurate journalism? Then we invite you to read our case study on how we helped build the 3 EDMO Hubs.

Download the case study
 

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