Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Live chat on Obama and doctored photos

PolitiFact Texas is produced by the staff of the Austin American-Statesman
PolitiFact Texas is produced by the staff of the Austin American-Statesman

The Austin American-Statesman encouraged readers to chat online about what we do.

Highlights of today’s "live chat":

--Several inquiries centered on how often we check President Obama. More than 400 Obama claims have been checked by PolitiFact reporters. See them compiled here. But PolitiFact Texas doesn’t get to check the president very often. We focus on claims by Texas figures or about Texas issues or citizens or statements made in Texas as in when the president stops to make a speech here. Most recently, we rated two claims made by Obama in Austin in May, one touching on the region’s high tech economy and the other related to border security.

--One reader asked: "How do you distinguish between honest mistakes, like relying on something published that turns out to be inaccurate, and intentional whoppers? Or do you?" We hew to the idea that anyone making a claim, no matter their source, is responsible for the accuracy of that claim.

--Another wondered if we ever review images "like when a candidate borrows a dog and kids for a photo?" This reminded us of our 2012 check of a claim involving an orange jumpsuit, posted here. We also remembered a fact check revealing creative edits in a Rick Perry campaign video.

--Some readers charged bias. One wanted to know which party primaries we’ve voted in. That’s public record. Another wrote: "You must be doing a good job if some readers are happy with your reporting and some are not. You all put it out there and it is up to the reader to make up his or her own mind based on what he or she has read. I think you all do a good job in a tough political environment."

All this reminded us that many of our checks start from a reader wondering, "Could this claim be so?"

Read the whole chat here.

What else?