Fifth, we pursue documented, verified facts and combat misinformation and disinformation. In any election cycle, politicians will make claims — some true, some mostly true, some mostly false, some entirely false. Statements will be made that are misleading, incomplete or lack sufficient context. As journalists, our role is to evaluate these claims and give you the necessary context to assess their veracity.
Our role as seekers of truth is important because false information has consequences. So how do we combat false information? Sometimes we choose to not write about misinformation because that can help amplify it. We’re more likely to debunk falsehoods when they are spread by elected officials or used as a justification for policy decisions.
In reporting on falsehoods and exaggerations, we clearly explain why such a claim is untrue and how it may harm Texans. It is more effective to write “there is no evidence of widespread fraud in any Texas county during the 2020 election” instead of writing “voter fraud claims are false.”
We are far from omniscient. We seek the help of experts (scientists, researchers, academics) and we talk to real people, who are experts in the reality of their lives and experiences. We do our homework and do not parrot what one source tells us.
Reporting is difficult. Our pledge is to make our best effort to get this right and give you the context you need to understand the issues politicians are debating and the veracity and significance of the claims they make. When we get something wrong, we will be transparent about changes to our stories and we will always note factual corrections at the bottom of the story and on our corrections page.