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Senior Fellow Barbara Joannon Fighting Against Fake News on Migration in France



Désinfox-Migrations” is a French non-for-profit organization, created in April 2018 by a group of active citizens, professionally involved in the migration sector as journalists, researchers, civil servants, NGO activists, policy advisors. Senior Fellow Barbara Joannon is one of them.

“We were all frustrated by what we were reading, listening to and watching in the media. Many fake news (infox in French) and manipulated information and facts are voiced by French policy and decision makers without anyone challenging them!”

Research shows that the ongoing tensions within French and European societies, the rise of hate speeches toward migrants and refugees and the unbalanced and security-oriented public debates on migration are stirred by disinformation and manipulation of facts on migration-related issues such as asylum, integration and identity. 

The rise of hate speech against migrants and refugees and the unbalanced and security-oriented public debates on migration are stirred by disinformation.”

Désinfox-Migrations strives to ensure that fact-checked information on migration and integration based on scientific findings and academic research are shared by French journalists for a more balanced, objective and transparent public debate on these topics. To get there, the organization facilitates connections between researchers and journalists on the one hand and contributes to producing fact-checked content which is shared through several channels on the other. 

What we are trying to do is to contribute to a more balanced, objective and transparent public debate on migration-related topics.

“We monitor policies and what decision makers say on migration. When we identify fake news, we conduct research ourselves or contact researchers specialized on the issue at stake and produce verified content that we then share with the public. More recently, we have started working with institutions, NGOs and actors involved in popular education to contribute to the development of pedagogical tools, exhibitions and workshops to fight against prejudices and stereotypes constructed by inaccurate information that people read, hear and watch on a daily basis.”

The organization focuses on two priorities:

  • enlarging its network of contributors, in particular its media monitoring network, and
  • developing new partnerships, in particular with media and journalists who are the primary target of the project. 

“The media is a sounding board of all information disseminated, no matter if it’s false or true. If we manage to involve journalists in the project, to facilitate their connections with researchers and raise their awareness on the impact of fake news, we also hope to raise the accountability of politicians: they cannot say everything they want anymore because we are monitoring their statements.”

If you are interested in getting more involved with Barbara’s organisation to report fake news on migration in France or contribute to produce fact checked content, you can learn more here or contact Barbara and her fellow fact checkers at or via Twitter at @DesinfoxMig.