Nieman Journalism Lab has an interesting report on software that can detect lies or misleading statements in a story, and for a little bit I thought this was going to be a piece on the next step toward robot reporters. (For a diversion, here’s a link to a 2009 video about robot reporters.)
It’s not. *phew*
But it’s the kind of thing that could alter the reporting process:
“His software is not designed to determine lies from truth on its own. That remains primarily the province of real humans. The software is being designed to detect words and phrases that show up in PolitiFact’s database, relying on PolitiFact’s researchers for the truth-telling.”
In other words, the intitial step of fact-checking a statement remains the same, but thereafter the software automatically speeds the process for other reporters, potentially allowing more time and effort to be devoted to things that have not already been checked.