Join the Online Gathering ‘Infodemic Lessons: The Way Forward’

Join us online for a unique regional gathering of journalists, fact-checkers, educators, public officials, health experts and active citizens.

In two 2-hour sessions we will not only share our experiences and lessons learned fighting the COVID-19 disinformation, but we will also make sure we devise a plan for the future. 

Next time, we will be ready. 

The event is organised by SEENPM and its members in the Western Balkans and the Prague-based publisher and media development organisation Transitions.

Wednesday 9 December 14:30 – 16:30 CET: Countering the Infodemic: Lessons from a public health emergency

With Jakub Goda, blogger, journalist and fact-checker who leads the efforts of the Slovak Ministry of Health to counter COVID-related disinformation, Jelena Kalinić, a science journalist from Bosnia, and Stefan Janjić, editor of Fake News Tragač, a leading factchecking outlet in Serbia.

Friday 11 December 14:30 and 16:30 CET: Getting Ready for the Next Infodemic:  Building resilient communities through better fact-checking and media literacy

With Lea Čengić, author, academic and media literacy expert, Tommy Shane, Head of Policy and Impact at Firstdraft, the leading global community of fact-checking and counter-disinformation experts and practitioners, and Aleksandra Kuzmanović, a Social Media Manager at the World Health Organization (WHO) Headquarters.

The sessions will also feature facilitated interactive workshops to give every participant an opportunity to contribute with lessons learned and ideas. 

Do you know someone who would be interested? Please, invite them. This event will focus primarily on lessons relevant for the Western Balkans.

Register here (Zoom).

We start from the premise that, while the erosion of public trust accelerated with the pandemic, many citizens rediscovered the importance of accurate and impartial information of public interest, with signs of fresh appreciation for professions whose mission is to keep society well informed. 

In this regard, the pandemic has been both a challenge and an opportunity for journalists, fact checkers, regulators, educators, health professionals, communications experts, civil society activists.

The proceedings of the meeting will be the basis of a set of guidelines and tips for professionals from these fields that the organisers will produce and disseminate in January 2021.

Jakub Goda works at the Ministry of Health in Slovakia where he helps to fight disinformation and improve digital communication. He is also known as a writer and an activist who looks for innovative ways to expose disinformation or raise awareness about the problem. He infiltrated well-known disinformation outlet Hlavné správy to reveal their lack of editorial standards and he succesfully campaigned to force supermarkets like Billa to stop selling antisemitic conspiratory magazine Zem a vek.

Jelena Kalinić is a science journalist based in Sarajevo, where she writes for the Oslobodjenje daily newspaper, covering a wide range of topics, from zoology and botany to bioengineering, CRISPR, astrophysics, and more. In addition, she writes her own science blog, Quantum of Science, and produces explanatory videos about science on YouTube. She is a member of the Balkan Network of Science Journalists. Her science reporting interests of late include the philosophy and history of science and debunking pseudoscience, particularly relating to vaccines and alternative medicine. She holds a degree in biology and a master degree in world literature.

Stefan Janjić is editor of Fake News Tragač, a leading factchecking outlet in Serbia. He graduated in journalism at the Faculty of Philosophy in Novi Sad in 2014 as the best student of the generation. Now an assistant professor at the media studies department at the faculty, Stefan holds a masters degree in communication studies and is currently working on his PhD. He has twice won the Novi Sad University’s award for academic research as well as the award Biće i jezik (Being and Language) of the philosopher Radomir Konstantinović foundation.

Lea Čengić, received a master’s degree on the topic of media literacy from the Faculty of Political Sciences in Sarajevo in 2012. She has worked since 2009 at the Communications Regulatory Agency of Bosnia and Herzegovina , where she is currently head of content and media literacy. As an editor, author and co-author, she published a number of publications on media and media literacy, with a particular focus on media regulation, EU media law, media literacy and child protection, and media education. She is also the author of the first media literacy study in B&H entitled “Media Literacy in Bosnia and Herzegovina”, published in 2013. She attended training for media literacy trainers at the US Center for Media Literacy and held numerous trainings on media, media regulation, media literacy and child protection. Since 2011, she has actively participated in the promotion of a safer and better internet by participating in marking Safer Internet Day. 

Tommy Shane is an expert on mis- and disinformation, with a particular focus on vaccine hesitancy and conspiracy theories. He is Head of Impact and Policy at First Draft, a global non-profit that works to build resilience against harmful, false, and misleading information, and works on research and development initiatives and manages the blog Footnotes. He has published on political authenticity on social media, labelling misinformation on platforms, and the psychology of misinformation. Previously he worked for the UK House of Commons, where he set up their digital engagement team. In 2017 he was named a global pioneer in digital democracy by Nesta.

Aleksandra Kuzmanović is a Social Media Manager at the World Health Organization (WHO) Headquarters, where she has served since July 2018. She co-manages WHO’s presence on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, TikTok and Snapchat, supporting WHO top leaders in social media activities, and leading social media-related partnerships including those on fighting COVID-19 misinformation. Kuzmanovic joined WHO in March 2015 and served as Communications Consultant in the Department of Public Health and Environment prior to her current position.”