In early testing on Twitter, the bot has attracted more than 2,000 followers including social-media influencers, political figures, journalists, and scientists. The company plans to make the service available worldwide on Twitter and on other social platforms this year.
“We live in an era of proliferating misinformation that is leaving people confused about what to believe and whom to trust,” says Repustar founder and CEO Chandran Sankaran. “Repustar’s mission is to ensure people can access facts that are credibly sourced when they encounter dubious claims on social media or messaging apps. FactSparrow helps make it easy and engaging to do this.”
When a social media user queries FactSparrow, proprietary AI-first scans the posts in the thread in question for context, then delivers in real-time relevant facts that are published on Repustar or on other fact-check repositories. If relevant documentation is not available, a question is flagged on the platform for Repustar’s contributors. The answers provided by these contributors add to the growing stockpile of well-sourced facts that are responsive to claims about the news and current events.
Repustar enables eligible contributors to publish simple, easy to consume, credibly sourced facts that are responsive to public needs, by following clear platform guidelines to ensure transparency and trust. Academic, research, and professional journalism/news organisations with histories of producing non-partisan, evidence-based information are currently eligible to contribute facts on Repustar.
Sankaran says: “As the use of FactSparrow increases, there will be more facts circulating on social media, and more people who are accustomed to challenging claims with facts, and with that we hope, the addition of some new guardrails that will slow the spread of misinformation all around us.”