Sources in the Conspiracy-Pseudoscience category may publish unverifiable information that is not always supported by evidence. These sources may be untrustworthy for credible/verifiable information, therefore fact checking and further investigation is recommended on a per article basis when obtaining information from these sources. See all Conspiracy-Pseudoscience sources.
- Overall, we rate Swiss Policy Research (SPR) a Moderate Conspiracy website based on the promotion of unproven claims. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to the use of poor sources and complete lack of transparency.
Factual Reporting: MIXED
Launched in 2016, Swiss Policy Research (SPR) is a research group investigating geopolitical propaganda in Swiss and international media. They report on their about page that “Our articles have been published or shared by numerous independent media outlets and journalists, among them Julian Assange, and have been translated into more than two dozen languages.”
Swiss Policy Research completely lacks transparency as there is not a single name affiliated with the website. For example, an editor is not named and articles do not name an author. Further, they do not list a geographic location and the domain is registered privately. Finally, ownership is not disclosed.
Funded by / Ownership
According to their about page “SPR is composed of independent academics and receives no external funding.” There is no other information available regarding ownership.
Analysis / Bias
In review, Swiss Policy Research is a website that purports to investigate geopolitical propaganda in Swiss and international media. They produce news articles as well as investigative analysis. Articles and headlines use minimally loaded wording such as this: Geopolitical propaganda on public radio: An analysis using the example of Swiss radio and television. Although, SPR thoroughly sources information they often use very poor sources that lack credibility. For example, when reporting on the Israel Lobby they provide a link to a video from the Questionable Unz Review, which is classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center and antisemitic by the Anti-Defamation League. Other sources used include RT and Sputnik, which they openly criticize as Russian Propaganda in other articles.
In another article they discredit Wikipedia as being a propaganda organization, Wikipedia: A Disinformation Operation? Yet, they are perfectly comfortable using them as a source of information in their analyses.
Swiss Policy Research is also providing information regarding the Coronavirus with mixed facts and misinformation. In this article, Facts about Covid-19, there is the use of several poor sources to support their claims such as the Daily Mail, Off-Guardian, Sputnik, and Youtube videos. Further, this list of so-called facts also contains unproven conspiracy theories such as this: “NSA wholesaler Edward Snowden warns that the “coronavirus crisis” will be used for the massive and continuous expansion of global surveillance. The well-known virologist Pablo Goldschmidt speaks of “global media terror” and “totalitarian measures.” Leading British virologist, Professor John Oxford, talks about a “media epidemic.” They further state “More than 500 scientists have warned of “unprecedented public oversight” using problematic “contact tracking” applications. In some countries, such “contact tracking” is already carried out directly by secret services. In several parts of the world, the population is already monitored by drones and is facing excessive police supervision.” While any of these may one day turn out to be true, there is zero evidence at this time to support these claims and hence they are unproven conspiracy theories.
The website also promotes other unproven conspiracy theories such as the majority of the USA media being controlled by The Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderbergs, and the Trilateral Commission. While there is no question there is a corporate monopoly in USA media ownership, there isn’t evidence to support their claims. This story again uses Wikipedia as a source, which they have discredited numerous times. In general, this is a conspiracy website that is not credible due to poor sourcing and lack of transparency.
Failed Fact Checks
“The overall lethality of [COVID-19] (IFR) is about 0.1% to 0.3% and thus in the range of a severe influenza” – Inaccurate
Overall, we rate Swiss Policy Research (SPR) a Moderate Conspiracy website based on the promotion of unproven claims. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to the use of poor sources and complete lack of transparency. (M. Huitsing 5/21/2020) Updated (8/26/2020)
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