Aoc empty parking lot : Despite online mockery, the editor of the fact-checking website PolitiFact told Fox News on Tuesday that she stood by an article apparently debunking claims that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez posed for a photo-op crying outside a “empty parking lot” last year.
After internet mocking, PolitiFact stands behind AOC’s ‘parking lot’ fact-check
A photographer, Ivan Pierre Aguirre, uploaded previously unpublished photos of Ocasio-Cortez in tears near a border detention facility in Tornillo, Texas, on his Twitter account earlier this year.
Observers quickly pointed out that Aguirre just shared shots of Ocasio-Cortez crying, with no clear indication of what she was looking at — and, after further photos surfaced, it appeared she didn’t have anything in front of her.
However, PolitiFact declared on Tuesday that the assertion that the freshman member was crying in front of a “empty parking lot” was categorically “wrong.”
After speaking with Aguirre and checking photographic evidence, PolitiFact discovered that the freshman Democrat was standing in front of a nearly empty “road leading to the camp,” rather than a “parking lot.” There were a few cars parked on the road.
(Another PolitiFact photographer, Lisa Krantz, said she “remembers a little parking area that was near the toll plaza that wasn’t fenced off, but many people parked under the toll plaza shelter for shade or along the road that went to the toll plaza.”)
DRAMATIC, TEARFUL PHOTOS NEAR A DETENTION FACILITY WERE NOT STAGED, ACCORDING TO AOC’S OFFICE
Despite the fact that Ocasio-Cortez “was just beyond the toll plaza for the Tornillo facility, and… standing on a road that led to the Tornillo tent complex, which was in the line of her view, while she stood at the fence,” PolitiFact said that “critics pounced” on her apparent photo-op.
Ciara O’Rourke and Duke University student Stefanie Pousoulides wrote the fact-check headlined “No, this isn’t a photo of Alexandria Ocasio Cortez crying over a parking lot.” According to Fox News, it was vetted by many editors.
Their strategy didn’t sit well with commentators on Tuesday, who claimed that the site deliberately missed the point in order to issue a “false” rating that would assist hide reports critical of Ocasio-Cortez about the incident.
“Has PolitiFact been hired by AOC yet?” Caleb Hull, a Republican political strategist, was asked this question.
“‘Ha!’ wrote humorist Frank Fleming. AOC was upset about a parking lot!'” ‘False, haters, we verified a satellite image and it was an empty road,’ POLITIFACT says. “Fact checks are like editorials, but dumber,” @jamestaranto said.
PJ Media’s Jim Treacher remarked, “IMPORTANT CORRECTION: @AOC Was Weeping Over an Empty Road, Not an Empty Parking Lot.”
Alex VanNess sent a photo of Ocasio-Cortez peering at what appeared to be a mostly empty road with a facility off in the distance, which was not included in PolitiFact’s piece.
“Out on the town having the time of my life with a bunch of pals,” one user captioned one of Ocasio-photographs, Cortez’s riffing on a Nathan Felder joke in which the comedian smiles and says his buddies are nearby: “Out on the town having the time of my life with a bunch of friends.” They’re all just out of frame, and they’re all laughing.”
PolitiFact’s editor, Angie Drobnic Holan, told Fox News that she was unconcerned about the backlash affecting the organization’s neutrality.
It’s one of numerous fact-checking websites that Facebook uses to vet social media messages before they’re made public.
Users who want to read stories tagged as “false” by sites like PolitiFact must first view and reject a Facebook notice about the article’s content.
Without specifying the nature of the fact-disagreement, checker’s the alerts can often deter readers from clicking on content.
“We work hard to provide readers of all political ideas and ideologies with factual, authoritative information,” Holan said.
“While readers may disagree with a particular grade or report, they gain knowledge from the report itself, and they recognise that our objective is governed by editorial independence in the long run.”
When asked why the fact-checking effort concentrated on the exact nature of the empty area in front of Ocasio-Cortez instead of whether her photo op was staged, Holan claimed the piece revealed vital new information.
“Our fact-check doesn’t just describe the protest scene as ‘an empty road,'” Holan explained.
“Rather, the road is part of a broader site that our fact-check clearly documents and explains,” says the author.
We provide a full description of the site as well as visual verification, which the initial blogs did not.
We stand behind our fact-check and feel it to be a vital element of our work dispelling online disinformation.”
PolitiFact, according to Holan, is “nonpartisan” and “never publishes fact-checks to push political arguments” since it “takes no policy stances.”
Reporters and editors should evaluate the following questions as part of PolitiFact’s editorial process, which is available online: “Is there another way to read the statement?”
Is it possible to comprehend the statement?” According to the site, three editors vote on a final rating.
When asked how the fact-checker chose which assertions to evaluate, Holan stated, “We selected the most wrong and noticeable element of the overall post to fact-check, which is our common procedure.”
Ocasio-Cortez shared the photographs in June. Claims that the photographs were largely fabricated were later dismissed by her spokesperson as “right-wing rubbish.”
“I’ll never forget this, because it was the moment I realised with my own eyes that the America I love was becoming a society that rips refugee children from their parents and cages them,” the lawmaker said of the photos. Following this, more children died.
No one has been held responsible so far. We must preserve these children.”
Republicans have often chastised ostensibly nonpartisan fact-checking sites for promoting what appear to be liberal themes.
In her essays dissecting her claims earlier this year, Ocasio-Cortez also had harsh words for the alleged arbiters of reality, accusing them of “false equivalency” and “bias” toward her.
Since her shock primary victory against then-Rep. Joe Crowley last year, Ocasio-Cortez has been targeted by fact-checkers, and she has taken aim at PolitiFact and The Washington Post fact-check section for allegedly singling her out.
“America, facts are facts. We should be concerned about doing things correctly.
However, the criteria for who is fact-checked, how frequently, and why are unclear,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted at the time.
“This is where false equivalency + bias seep in, allowing, for example, climate sceptics to be treated equally as scientists.
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