(Noted News) — After months of deliberation on whether or not a Presidential Debate would even happen, Donald Trump and Joe Biden are set to go at it Tuesday, September 29, at 9 PM eastern time. This time, viewers will be able to view the debate, while “fact-checking” the candidates for free on their phones.
Logically, an app created by MIT and Cambridge graduate Lyric Jain, uses artificial and human intelligence to cross-reference information to credible sources to combat “fake news” and misinformation. The app can be downloaded for free on iOS or Android, and, during the presidential debate, will give users snippets of information live to keep both candidates honest.
Logically has already been used to regulate what it sees as misinformation surrounding the elections in the U.K as well as India. It also works for various organizations in identifying misinformation on controversial issues such as COVID-19 or the QAnon phenomenon.
QAnon, which is a group of anonymous people alleging to be insiders of the Trump administration and making various claims about the “Deep State”, was recently exposed by Logically.
Somebody anonymously posting under QAnon’s name was identified as an IT specialist working for Citigroup bank in New Jersey. The individual was then placed on administrative leave by Citigroup.
The fact-checking app will be overseeing the first face-to-face debate between the two presidential candidates, as well as the vice-presidential debates between Kamala Harris and Mike Pence in October.
President Trump already gave audiences a taste of what’s to come, questioning his opponent’s cognitive ability repeatedly over the last few months, and saying on Saturday that he was dumb.
“He’s a dumb guy, a dumb guy, always known as a dumb guy,” Trump said in Pennsylvania.
The debate will be moderated by Fox’s Chris Wallace, who Trump has previously accused of being under the control of the “radical left”, and will be covering the following topics:
- Trump’s and Biden’s records: Biden is likely to go after Trump’s handling of the COVID-19 situation, and Trump has almost 50 years’ worth of political history to sift through and find pain points on Biden.
- The Supreme Court: President Trump recently appointed Justice Amy Coney Barret, creating worries that the Supreme Court is effectively a conservative stronghold, outnumbering liberal-leaning justices 6-3. Simultaneously, house Democrats drafted a bill to lower justice term lengths to 18 years from lifetime tenures.
- COVID-19: As the death toll reaches 200,000, Biden will again likely go after Trump’s approach to the situation while Trump will probably compare the US to worse off countries in an effort to look better.
- The economy: Trump’s economy has enjoyed record stock gains, but Biden may point out the vast inequality and growing poverty that has still gone unaddressed.
- Race and violence in U.S. cities: Almost every major city in the US has erupted in protests and riots following recent cases of police violence. President Trump has struggled to form a coherent response to the movement, as well as a coherent strategy of fixing the problems cited by the protestors justifying it. He is also at odds with many Democrat mayors regarding his response to the protests and riots.
- The integrity of the election: Ever since the alleged interference of the 2016 election by Russian hackers, the integrity of the election has become a hot topic in the political media arena. As the 2020 election nears, both parties have hinted that they would refuse to accept the result if they believed the election process had been tampered with.
Tuesday’s debate will be the first one to have a live fact-checking service, and will potentially set precedents for all future elections as the topic of fake news, misinformation, and election tampering becomes more prevalent.
The developments with Logically come following Microsoft’s “Defending Democracy Program” initiative, which included the development of new software to analyze videos and spot “deepfakes” to maintain the integrity of the democratic process.
“Improving media literacy will help people sort disinformation from genuine facts and manage risks posed by deepfakes and cheap fakes. Practical media knowledge can enable us all to think critically about the context of media and become more engaged citizens while still appreciating satire and parody. Though not all synthetic media is bad, even a short intervention with media literacy resources has been shown to help people identify it and treat it more cautiously.”