Introduction to the CrossOver project

Crossover is a European project to monitor, analyse and combat algorithmic disinformation.

The main task of CrossOver is to track and measure the influence of content recommendation algorithms on social media in Belgium, exposing how they can lead to mis- and disinformation. The idea is to put oneself in the shoes of a Belgian user to see what he would be confronted to on social media platforms. In order to do so, the first step was to monitor these platforms to see either the trending topics they displayed, or what result they would give after a user performs a search on a specific keyword. Check First collected data from 7 social media platforms and displayed them in dashboards so that journalists, but also civil society could use those data to investigate. The monitored platforms are:

  • Google search and suggest
  • Twitter trends
  • Reddit hot posts
  • Youtube search and suggest
  • Facebook posts
  • Google News
  • Odysee search

The dashboards display data collected through platform’s official API or public programmatic endpoints and by user simulation system. To compare data provided by official APIs and user simulations system, we settled a network of credit-card size computer in every Belgium province, at volunteer’s houses.

Check First also conducts open source intelligence investigations together with Apache and EU DisinfoLab offering our skills to support their quality journalistic work.

About us

Check First is a leading Finnish software and methodologies company, spearheading adversarial research techniques. We believe that everyone should be able to understand how and why content is presented to them. We advocate for online clarity and accountability, building solutions to attain this goal. Partnering with leading institutions, regulators, NGOs and educators, we aim at curbing the spread of disinformation and foreign influence manipulations.

Our story