The Epistemology of Fact Checking (Is Still Naìve): Rejoinder to Amazeen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


ABSTRACT: Michelle Amazeen's rebuttal of Uscinski and Butler 2013 is unsuccessful. Amazeen's attempt to infer the accuracy of fact checks from their agreement with each other fails on its own terms and, in any event, could as easily be explained by fact checkers’ political biases as their common access to the objective truth. She also ignores the distinction between verifiable facts and unverifiable claims about the future, as well as contestable claims about the causes of political, social, and economic phenomena. The social benefits that she claims for the fact-checking enterprise must, at the very least, be weighed against the strong possibility that what passes for fact checking is actually just a veiled continuation of politics by means of journalism rather than being an independent, objective counterweight to political untruths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)243-252
Number of pages10
JournalCritical Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 3 2015


  • fact checking
  • journalism
  • media bias
  • political epsitemology
  • verifiable facts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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