What is real, what is fake? How can I recognize propaganda? And how can I protect myself against disinformation? The fact-checking team gets to the bottom of these questions. Find out more about our fact checkers here.
DW's fact-checking team is part of the Content Pool, which is part of the Chief Editorial Office. The team was founded in 2020 in response to circulating disinformation during the Corona pandemic and publishes online on DW's website, on TV as news segments, and on social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. All team members are trained fact checkers who work with digital research tools. The team shares its knowledge in verification as well as fact-checking among other things in training and workshops.
Anwar Ashraf (Video Journalist/Author): Anwar Ashraf is a video journalist and founding member of DW's fact-checking team. The focus of his work is on social issues and human rights. For DW, Anwar has co-developed various video formats, including the fact-checking team’s explainer videos for Youtube. After studying history and earning a degree in journalism in India, Anwar has worked as a journalist and trainer for 25 years. His trainings focus on visual storytelling and video production.
Rachel Baig (Editor): Rachel Baig is a journalist and media trainer at DW and DW Akademie, mainly in the news team. She is a founding member of DW's fact-checking team and moderates the fact-checking format for YouTube in English. She is also responsible for training DW colleagues in verification and fact-checking. She began her traineeship at DW in 2011. Previously, she studied English Linguistics and Cultural Studies with a focus on Postcolonial Studies in Paderborn and La Laguna. She is also a media trainer and has helped fact-checking groups in Pakistan, Namibia, Ethiopia, and Mongolia get off the ground through fact-checking trainings.
Ines Eisele (Editor): Ines Eisele studied German and Romance languages and literature in Cologne and journalism in Leipzig. She completed her traineeship at Deutsche Welle. After that, she worked for DW's online news and social media editorial departments, among others. Further stations were the news site for migrants Infomigrants, the WDR and the independent fact-checking platform Stimmtdas.org. Meanwhile, Ines works in DW's fact-checking team, as channel manager for the German site and as a writer for online articles and videos. Ines' focus is on social issues and regionally on Brazil, where she spent some time.
Tetyana Klug (Editor, Author): Tetyana Klug was born in Ukraine. She studied English, German and literature in Kyiv, and media and cultural analysis in Düsseldorf. In 2008 she completed the talent workshop "WDR grenzenlos". After internships at WDR and ZDF, she joined DW, where she completed her traineeship in 2011. She then worked in the video team of DW's Ukrainian editorial department. After the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia and after the outbreak of war in eastern Ukraine in 2014, she developed the fact check video format for the Ukrainian editorial team. She is a founding member of DW's fact-checking team, and her focus is on the topics of Eastern European politics, fake news and state propaganda.
Astrid Prange de Oliveira (Author): Astrid has worked for three news agencies, four daily newspapers and three weekly newspapers. As a Latin America correspondent for the Berlin daily TAZ, the historian reported from South America for eight years. After her return, she temporarily sought a new challenge as a campaigner for children's rights at UNICEF. She has been working for Deutsche Welle since 2013, focusing on globalization, faith and Latin America, explaining her second home to an international audience. For her work, she was awarded the Lorenzo Natali Prize of the EU Commission for Human Rights and the Media Prize for Development Policy. Since 2016, she has been a lecturer in the media studies program at the Philosophical-Theological University (PTH) in Frankfurt.
Thomas Sparrow (Author). Thomas Sparrow has worked for Deutsche Welle since 2015. He is a political and security correspondent for the English-language channel and reports in English and in Spanish for DW’s premium broadcast partners around the world. Before joining DW he was a correspondent for the BBC in Washington. Sparrow grew up speaking three languages in Colombia: Spanish, English and German. He is also the co-author of three books on Europe, including a travel book on Poland, where he studied. He joined the fact-checking team in 2023.
Uta Steinwehr (Editor, Author): Uta Steinwehr is a founding member of DW's fact-checking team. She began her traineeship at Deutsche Welle in 2015, and now works as an editor and writer in various departments of DW. Previously, she studied African Studies and Journalism at the University of Leipzig with stations in Great Britain, Kenya and Tanzania. In terms of content, her focus is on social issues, and regionally on Africa.
Silja Thoms (Author): Silja Thoms studied journalism and political science at the Technical University of Dortmund and at the Institut d'études politiques (Sciences Po) in Toulouse. After internships, among others at ZDF and Arte, she worked mainly as a freelancer for the political talk show "Hart aber Fair" (ARD). During her traineeship at DW, she wrote and filmed for various editorial offices in Bonn, Berlin and Washington. She has been an editor at DW since March 2023, researching and writing for the fact-checking team, among others.
Jan D. Walter (Author): Jan D. Walter is a trained insurance salesman, qualified regional scientist and self-made journalist. At Deutsche Welle, he initially worked for the Brazilian editorial team, where he reported on social and sustainability aspects of the 2014 World Cup, among other things. Since 2015, he has been an editor and writer in the service of the central editorial department, writes occasionally for the business department, and has been a member of DW's fact-checking team since mid-2022. As a freelancer, Jan Walter also works for companies in various industries, for example, he writes technical articles for various players in the energy sector.
Kathrin Wesolowski (Author): Kathrin Wesolowski studied journalism and English at the TU Dortmund and at the Tec de Monterrey in Mexico. She completed her traineeship at Hessischer Rundfunk. Kathrin has worked as a freelance journalist for Arte, NBC, dpa-Themendienst, HR and WDR, among others. She started her work as a fact checker in 2019 during a research trip to Georgia and worked as a fact check editor for the research center Correctiv in 2020. Since the beginning of 2021, Kathrin has been part of DW's fact-checking team and works as a freelance writer, mainly in video and online for Deutsche Welle, and gives workshops on fact-checking and propaganda. Her main topics are international affairs, society, politics and fact checks. She prefers to do research abroad, so far in Brazil, Myanmar and Georgia, among others.
Joscha Weber (Team Lead): Joscha Weber founded DW's fact-checking team in 2020 and has headed it ever since. He moderates the fact-checking video formats for online, TV as well as social media and developed DW's fact-checking formats. He is also a trainer for fact-checking and digital research. In trainings, workshops and lectures, he has already trained journalists and students in verification in Moldova, Uzbekistan, Morocco, Cambodia and Germany. Previously, he studied communication, politics and history in Münster and Aix-en-Provence, worked for WDR and dpa, among others, did a traineeship at DW and headed the digital section of DW's Sports editorial department for eight years.