The first two phases of the SocialTruth pilot project, which aims to create a system that classifies, evaluates and certifies the reliability of news and information circulating on the Internet, have been successfully completed.
SocialTruth (www.socialtruth.eu) is an interdisciplinary European research and innovation project designed and developed by a consortium of 11 partners, led by the National Polytechnic Research Institute of Communication and Computer Systems Research (EPISEV).
By analyzing and evaluating news in an automated way and classifying it based on its reliability, SocialTruth seeks to make the dissemination of information on the Internet safer and more reliable.
After two years of continuous development and improvement of the system, the first stages of pilot testing were carried out by the end users of SocialTruth. In particular, journalists and journalism students, educators and members of consumer institutes, among others, used the capabilities of the system in more than 700 different trials, which included more than 500 cases of online news or articles.
The conclusions from the pilot tests as well as the comments from the end users are already used for the further development and improvement of the system. The development of the system is expected to be completed soon, leading to the final stages of the evaluation next September.
The test results are very encouraging, while surpassing the initial ones
expectations. In particular, the SocialTruth system accurately identified about
63% of news and articles. In fact, in the case of the tests that concerned
real news and articles, this percentage approached 90%.
The pilot tests were performed using Digital Companion, an add-on that can be installed on known browsers. This add-on was designed to provide a simple, understandable and enjoyable user experience.
SocialTruth uses various cutting-edge technologies, such as blockchain, to ensure the accuracy and solvency of results. In the final phases of the pilot tests, the system will be tested by an even wider range of end users.
SocialTruth is a project funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation program. The originality of the project lies in the effort to create an open, democratic and pluralistic ecosystem with easy access to verification services as well as to ensure scalability and build trust, within a fully decentralized environment.
The SocialTruth consortium includes 11 partners from 6 European countries: three widely recognized research organizations (EPISEV - University Research Institute of Communications and Computer Systems from Greece, UTP - University of Science and Technology from Poland and LSBU University South - Three major suppliers of technology solutions from France (Thales, Expert AI and Qwant), two experienced business consulting firms from Italy (Tecoms and Zanasi & Partners), two news and media organizations from Italy (Adnkronos and De Agostini Scuola) as well as an active consumer organization from Romania (InfoCons).