NewsGuard and Barometer Unveil Episode-Level Misinformation Detection for Podcasts

The AI-Powered Solution Release Benefits Businesses, Consumers, and Society

(May 9, 2023 — Chattanooga, TN / New York) Barometer, an AI company that empowers teams to extract data-driven insights from their content, and NewsGuard, the global leader in news reliability ratings that uses journalists and experienced editors to produce ratings for news and information publishers and a catalog of provably false narratives, today announced a powerful new solution designed to help podcast publishers and advertisers rapidly detect and alert users when potential misinformation is discovered.

The NewsGuard-Barometer offering is an advanced AI-powered solution that can detect potential misinformation at the episode-level in seconds. This allows those who use the solution to rapidly inform economic and brand value-based decisions ranging from vetting a podcast show before including it in a brand’s advertising strategy to pausing a media buy for further examination.

How the NewsGuard-Barometer Misinformation Detection Solution Works 

NewsGuard and Barometer’s Misinformation Detection Solution for Podcasts works by integrating AI-powered data identification algorithms with NewsGuard’s Misinformation Fingerprints — its journalist-powered catalog of false narratives spreading online — to ensure users can see and act on potential misinformation as quickly as possible. By tapping into Barometer’s natural language processing to create risk profiles for podcasts based on the Global Advertisers for Responsible Media’s (GARM) Brand Safety Floor and Suitability Framework and Media roundtable values, the solution makes it easy for audio advertisers to plan values-driven ad buys, support transparency, and empower context-based advertising. 

NewsGuard’s machine-readable “Fingerprints” each contain a description of the false narrative, a detailed debunk with factual information, citations to authoritative sources, associated keywords, and hashtags, examples of the false narrative spreading online, and other descriptive metadata. Barometer’s AI uses these inputs as “data seeds” in order to detect when misinformation narrative(s) are likely being discussed in a particular podcast episode. 

Ultimately, the NewsGuard-Barometer partnership scales the impact of the data that NewsGuard’s global team of experienced journalists mines from thousands of global news providers, by leveraging AI to scan the millions of minutes of podcast content Barometer processes each month. 

According to Barometer founder and CEO Tamara Zubatiy, “While the team at Barometer was already proud of the solution we built with NewsGuard, observing how users are applying it makes us beam. The good agencies, brands, and publishers have struck a win-win-win as they use our solution to drive business, brand suitability and safety, and consumer protection. 

“The solution with Barometer applies NewsGuard’s work in a powerful way on behalf of agencies, brands, and publishers,” said NewsGuard VP of Operations and New Products, Sruthi Palaniappan. “Our mission is to combat the spread of misinformation, promote media literacy, and restore trust in trustworthy news through our journalist-vetted data. Partnering with great technology leaders like Barometer allows us to deliver on the mission with precision and at scale, benefiting everyone we serve.” 

Specific use cases of those who tested the solution prior to release included:

  • Monitoring podcast media buys or podcasts being considered for purchase for the presence of potential misinformation narratives. At an episode-by-episode level, the solution was used to pinpoint where misinformation narratives were likely being trafficked. Once detected, Barometer quickly highlighted the suspected misinformation narrative at the transcript and subject matter level. 
  • Tapping into Barometer’s various partnerships and integrations to enforce brand integrity standards throughout the campaign (pre-filtering, in-campaign monitoring, post-campaign analysis).
  • Leveraging Barometer’s API to power further insights, contextual targeting aligned with the IAB Taxonomy 3.0, Host Intelligence, and brand safety & suitability signals for the other 11 GARM components

In addition to NewsGuard’s work with Barometer, leveraging AI to assess for potential misinformation at the episodic level, NewsGuard separately announced earlier this week the launch of its Podcast Reliability Ratings—a new product assessing news and information podcasts at the show level on journalistic criteria of credibility and transparency. The Podcast Reliability Ratings allow advertisers to identify trusted, brand-safe news podcasts and aid podcast streaming platforms with content moderation decisions.

The timing of the new solution aligns with the global marketing industry’s call for collective action against misinformation and is particularly valuable to top brands committed to conforming to Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) standards. In June 2022, GARM named Misinformation the 12th category in its Brand Safety Floor & Suitability Framework, a resource the organization published to help define safe and harmful content online.

This solution also helps brands reduce the $2.6 billion in ad revenue unintentionally delivered to sources trafficking in misinformation, as estimated by NewsGuard and Comscore in a 2021 report.

To learn more about the solution or try it today, visit http://www.thebarometer.co or contact john@thebarometer.co or tamara@thebarometer.co directly to set up a call.


About NewsGuard

Launched in March 2018 by media entrepreneur and award-winning journalist Steven Brill and former Wall Street Journal publisher Gordon Crovitz, NewsGuard provides credibility ratings and detailed “Nutrition Labels” for thousands of news and information websites. NewsGuard rates all the news and information websites that account for 95% of online engagement across the U.S., U.K., Canada, Germany, France, Austria, Italy, and now in Australia and New Zealand. NewsGuard products include NewsGuard ratings, NewsGuard for Advertisers, which helps marketers concerned about their brand safety, and the Misinformation Fingerprints catalog of top false narratives online.

In February 2023, the company launched NewsGuard for AI, which provides the leading tools to train generative AI models to avoid spreading misinformation. Generative AI models such as Microsoft Bing Chat use the Misinformation Fingerprints to recognize and avoid spreading the top false narratives online and use the NewsGuard ratings to differentiate between generally reliable sources of news and information and untrustworthy sources so that the machines can be trained to treat these sources differently.

In 2022, NewsGuard for Advertising began to include ratings of television news and information programs and networks using criteria similar to those used to score websites but adapted for the video medium. NewsGuard’s TV ratings are the first to go beyond its initial ratings of websites. In May 2023, NewsGuard announced that it is also rating news and information podcasts, working with three of the largest audio platforms, which will help advertisers gain confidence in supporting highly rated podcasts. Ratings for CTV and OTT news programming and news and information podcasts will be available for licensing in 2023.

NewsGuard’s ratings are conducted by trained journalists using apolitical criteria of journalistic practice.

NewsGuard’s ratings and Nutrition Labels are licensed by browsers, news aggregators, education companies, and social media and search platforms to make NewsGuard’s information about news websites available to their users. Consumers can also access NewsGuard’s website ratings by purchasing a subscription to NewsGuard, which costs AU$6.95/month, NZ$6.95/month, US$4.95/month, €4.95/month or £4.95/month, and includes access to NewsGuard’s browser extension for Chrome, Safari, and Firefox and its mobile app for iOS and Android. The extension is available for free on Microsoft’s Edge browser through a license agreement with Microsoft. Hundreds of public libraries globally receive free access to use NewsGuard’s browser extension on their public-access computers to give their patrons more context for the news they encounter online. For more information, including to download the browser extension and review NewsGuard’s ratings process, visit newsguardtech.com.


About Barometer 

Barometer is an AI-powered brand suitability and contextual targeting solution for podcast advertising. Our patent-pending, AI Brand Integrity Cloud uses natural language processing to analyze podcasts based on industry standard taxonomies including the IAB Content taxonomy 3.0 for contextual targeting and the Global Advertisers for Responsible Media’s (GARM) Brand Safety Floor and Suitability Framework. Our solutions drive radical transparency across the entire audio ecosystem building trust between the buy and sell sides to usher in a new era of scale and maturity in podcast advertising.  http://www.thebarometer.co