Press Release: KTM Journathon Looks at Solutions to Tackle Misinformation and Disinformation Using AI  Feb 23, 2024


Nepal Investigative Multimedia Journalism Network (NIMJN)


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KTM Journathon Looks at Solutions to Tackle Misinformation and Disinformation Using AI 

Kathmandu, Nepal (February 23, 2024) – Nepal Investigative Multimedia Journalism Network (NIMJN), organized a two and a half-day KTM Journathon to tackle misinformation and disinformation using AI. KTM Journathon brought together national and international participants from journalism, IT, and other sectors to work in multidisciplinary groups to fight against misinformation and disinformation collaboratively by leveraging AI tools and techniques. KTM Journathon was held on Feb 18 (virtually), and on Feb 21 and Feb 22nd as an in-person event in Kathmandu. A Journathon is a hackathon where tech enthusiasts and professionals collaborate with journalists and come up with innovative solutions to various pressing issues.

“Misinformation and disinformation using AI is one of the biggest challenges we are facing now,” said Rajneesh Bhandari, CEO and Chief Editor of NIMJN. “We brought together journalists, machine language experts, and professionals to find solutions to these issues using AI.” The participants were then divided into 5 groups. Each group consisted of a mixture of tech enthusiasts, IT professionals, journalists, journalism students, and a few from other sectors such as risk management and environmental science. 

Participants also received a virtual training on Feb 18 from Dilrukshi Handunnetti, co-founder of the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) Sri Lanka and Editor at Mongabay Sri Lanka, on the current misinformation and disinformation landscape and the challenges people are facing. Nasr ul Hadi, the Founder and Executive Director of PROTO, a media development studio, as well as a recipient of the ICFJ Knight Fellowship, spoke on the importance of AI technology in fighting against misinformation and disinformation. Kamashi Sharma Pokharel, a lecturer from Kaplan Business School in Australia trained them on design thinking. 

During the in-person Journathon, Kshitiz Regmi, a Machine Learning Engineer from Fusemachines, Rajneesh Bhandari, and Kamashi Sharma Pokharel mentored the groups on finding better solutions to their challenges on misinformation and disinformation. Juna Mathema, Chairperson of the Startup & Innovation Forum, FNCCI, and the co-founder of Blitz, trained them on the Business Model Canvas, a strategic management template used for developing new business models.

On the last day, the five groups pitched their final ideas. A panel of judges (Kshitiz Regmi, Dilrukshi Handunnetti, and Rajneesh Bhandari) selected the three best ideas based on their solution, feasibility, innovation, and the quality of their presentation. 

Khoj AI, a browser extension, mobile application, and an information search engine that enables professionals and the general public to quickly verify the authenticity of information, won the first prize. Flashfeed, a website that summarizes long news articles into short-form summaries to make them more accessible and palatable to the youth, professionals, and Nepalese living abroad, won the second prize. And खोप Board (Khop Board), a chatbot with social media integration (especially Facebook) that gives accurate information regarding vaccines, won the third prize. They were awarded Nrs 30,000, Nrs 20,000, and Nrs 15,000 respectively. 

NIMJN is a non-profit media organization working to improve the standards of investigative multimedia journalism in Nepal through advanced training, mentorship, and in-depth investigative stories publication. The event was supported by Humanity United.

For more information please visit our website or email us at [email protected].