Saturday, January 30, 2016

PolitiFact's second-most popular response to criticism

We all know PolitiFact's most popular response to criticism: Ignore it.

Today we reveal PolitiFact's second-most popular response to criticism, via example. The example comes from PolitiFact's Mailbag feature, Jan. 29, 2016:
One reader criticized our story, "The presidential scorecards so far," which listed the summaries of our fact-check ratings for the 2016 presidential field, candidate by candidate.

Such a comparison, the reader wrote, "is absolutely meaningless, because the statements selected for Truth-O-Meter ratings for each candidate were neither scientifically nor randomly selected. In previous responses to my emails, Truth-O-Meter personnel have stated that the criteria used for selection of statements is documented and thus is sufficient for journalistic integrity. I have no problem with what statements you select for fact-checking, or the process used in the selection. However, trying to lump all such statements together into a scorecard, and then comparing scorecards for different people, when different statements were rated, is scientifically meaningless, and, in my opinion, advocacy journalism rather than fact-based journalism."

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And there you have it.

PolitiFact's second-most popular response to criticism involves acknowledging the existence of the criticism and offering no response to it.

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