I thought journalism pretty much was fact-checking.

I was reading the Washington Post’s article on the biggest political liars of 2012. It wasn’t so much the fact that both political parties are full of liars that depressed me. I already knew that. No, what bothered me most was this paragraph from one of the organizations that is supposed to help inoculate the populace against political lies.

In this election, fact checking certainly became part of the conversation, with many additional news organizations joining FactCheck.Org, PolitiFact and The Washington Post in scrutinizing politician’s statements, especially during the debates. Since fact checking is a relatively new genre of journalism, however, it is frequently misunderstood.

Fact-checking is a relatively new genre of journalism. Take a moment and let that sink in.

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