Truth Matters: Strategies for Combating Manipulated Realities

Wednesday, March 13, 2019, at 9:30-15:30
Location: Helsinki Central Library Oodi, Maijansali, Töölönlahdenkatu 4, Helsinki

The event is free of charge. Registration is required: 
Registration is open until February 27, 2019.

“Truth Matters: Strategies for Combating Manipulated Realities” is a public seminar addressing manipulated realities, media literacy and fact-checking. The seminar is organized by the Fulbright Finland Foundation and it takes place at the new Helsinki Central Library Oodi.

Written and visual content is used to communicate, inform and influence, and to shape collective ideas about people, politics and public policy. Misinformation, manipulated videos and images spread on multiple platforms. How can we distinguish between true and false information, and how does the manipulation of videos and images exponentially increase this challenge? What are the implications to our societies and to our democratic institutions?

Through a keynote and a panel with Finnish and international experts, followed by hands-on workshops, the seminar focuses on the challenges of manipulated content, and aims to identify strategies and outline concrete actions that can be taken to prevent and combat threats caused by manipulated realities. The two parallel workshops in the afternoon focus on fact-checking for educators and future voters, and discuss ways to teach skills to recognize misinformation.

Seminar speakers include high-level experts in the field. See bios.



Program booklet published closer to the event.

Venue: Maijansali, 1st floor

9:30 Welcome Remarks

Terhi Mölsä, CEO, Fulbright Finland Foundation
Introduction of the keynote speaker

9:45-10:40 Keynote Speech: Understanding Visual Mis- and Disinformation

Farida Vis, Director, Visual Social Media Lab; Professor of Digital Media, Manchester School of Art (See bio)

10:45-12:15 Panel Discussion: "Manipulated Realities – Threat to our Democracy?"

Moderator: Mari K. Niemi, Director, Innovation and Entrepreneurship InnoLab, University of Vaasa; Docent in Contemporary History, specializing in Political Communication (See bio)


  • Päivi Anttikoski, Director General, Government Communications, Prime Minister’s Office, Finland
  • Jarno Limnéll, Professor of Cybersecurity at Aalto University, Adjunct Professor at the National Defence University, University of Jyväskylä and Tampere University of Technology (See bio)
  • Barbara McCormack, Vice President of Education, Freedom Forum Institute, Newseum, Washington, D.C. (See bio)
  • Mikko Salo, Faktabaari (FactBar) Co-Founder; Member of the European Commission’s High-Level Group on Fake News and Online Disinformation (See bio)
  • Olli Seuri, Journalist, YLE Finland's national public broadcasting company; Journalist of the Year 2018 (See bio)

12:15-13:30 Lunch Break

13:30-15:30 Parallel Workshops

Both workshops are appropriate for educators, journalists, students, library and information specialists, and for the general public.

Space is limited and advance registration on first-comefirst-served basis is required.

Workshop 1: Judging Fact from Fiction and Everything in Between
Barbara McCormack, Vice President of Education, Freedom Forum Institute, Newseum, Washington, D.C.

  • Review definition of freedom of press and explain how it functions in today’s society.
  • Discuss rights/law from ethics/responsibilities.
  • Analyze print, television and online media for accuracy, fairness, and clarity.
  • Review different sources of news and information and how the source can influence the content.
  • Discuss the current and possible future trends in the media environment.

Workshop 2: Faktabaari EDU Toolkit - Fact-checking for Educators and Future Voters
Mikko Salo, Faktabaari (FactBar) Co-Founder; Member of the European Commission’s High-Level Group on Fake News and Online Disinformation
Kari Kivinen, Head of the Lycée franco-finlandais d’Helsinki (See bio)

15:20 Workshops end

15:30-17:30 Reception (by invitation only).


The Fulbright Finland Foundation extends a special welcome to participants from the Baltic and Nordic countries who are attending the seminar as participants in the Fulbright Finland Foundation’s regional Baltic-Nordic Fulbright initiative.

The Fulbright Finland Foundation wishes to extend a sincere thank you to all of the speakers and experts that have contributed to the seminar program. 

To reach the Fulbright Finland Foundation email office(at), or call +358 44 5535 286.