CFC Media Lab IDEABOOST Company SAM Joins First Draft’s CrossCheck Project to Fight Fake News During the French Election

CFC Media Lab IDEABOOST Company SAM Joins
First Draft’s CrossCheck Project to Fight Fake News During
the French Election.

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Toronto, Canada (February 10, 2017) – The Canadian Film Centre (CFC) Media Lab is pleased to announce that SAM, a CFC Media Lab IDEABOOST company, is partnering with First Draft to support CrossCheck. This collaborative verification project will assist newsrooms in battling fake news during the current French election cycle. SAM, a social media content management system, will support newsrooms as they monitor politicians’ posts across social platforms and fact-check claims.

SAM is one of more than 50 core partners of the First Draft coalition, which includes partners such as Twitter, Facebook and The New York Times. Created in 2015, First Draft is committed to raising awareness and addressing challenges regarding trust and truth in the digital age. CrossCheck represents one of their first major projects. By bringing together journalists from organizations across France to debunk false and misleading articles and social content, CrossCheck will help voters make sense of what to trust online.

“We believe that creating an informed electorate is a shared responsibility across the news industry, whether you are a journalist or developer,” said James Neufeld, Founder & CEO, SAM. “We’re very proud that our platform will play a role in helping CrossCheck and French newsrooms navigate the new world of fake news and alternative facts, and that we can collaborate at scale to tackle these issues during this election. The First Draft team has done an incredible job bringing together the very best minds, technology and social networks to tackle fake news. We’re pleased that our technology will be part of a model we’re certain will be replicated across Europe and the world."

Seventeen newsrooms and major social media sites have already joined CrossCheck, including AFP (Agence France-Presse), BuzzFeed News, France Télévisions, Le Monde and Google News Labs. Each newsroom will contribute its own experience, resources and regional knowledge to ensure that accurate reports reach citizens across the country and beyond.

A recent alumnus of CFC Media Lab IDEABOOST Cohort 5, SAM is also the 2016 winner of the inaugural Cultural Start-up Award, part of Enterprising Culture, a major international forum for Franco-Canadian creative and cultural industry startups. CFC Media Lab and the Cultural Service of the Embassy of France in Canada, in partnership with Forum d’Avignon, produced the event; read more about the Cultural Start-up Award here.

“SAM is exactly the type of company we like to invest in – one whose product vision is to solve complex problems with effective, thoughtful and meaningful technology,” said Ana Serrano, Chief Digital Officer, CFC, and Managing Director, IDEABOOST. “For the current complex global media landscape, only a few startups and founders have both the lived experience and technology chops to find solutions. That’s why IDEABOOST looks beyond the usual suspects to find renaissance founders like James Neufeld, people with a nuanced and deep commitment to media that can lead globally.”

Selma Toprak, Cultural attaché, Consulate General of France in Toronto, concurs. “SAM received an excellent reception in France as part of our first Franco-Canadian program for the exchange of cultural startups. The service it offers skillfully combines the use of innovative technology with the needs of our companies with high quality and checked news.”

Learn more about First Draft and CrossCheck here.

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Canadian Film Centre |
CFC Media Lab
@cfcmedialab |
Embassy of France in Canada – Consulate General of France in Toronto
@francetoronto |
@SAM_Desk |


The Canadian Film Centre (CFC) is a charitable organization whose mission is to invest in and inspire the next generation of world-class Canadian content creators and entrepreneurs in the screen-based entertainment industry. A significant economic and cultural driver in Canada and beyond, CFC delivers a range of multi-disciplinary programs and initiatives in film, television, music, screen acting, and digital media, which provides industry collaborations, strategic partnerships, and business and marketplace opportunities for talent and participants.

CFC Media Lab
The Canadian Film Centre’s Media Lab (CFC Media Lab) is an internationally acclaimed digital media think tank and award-winning production facility. It provides a unique research, training and production environment for digital media content developers and practitioners, as well as acceleration programs and services for digital entertainment start-ups and related SMEs. Program participants have emerged as leaders in the world of digital media, producing groundbreaking projects and innovative, sustainable companies for the digital and virtual age. CFC Media Lab is funded in part by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

Embassy of France in Canada – Consulate General of France in Toronto
The Cultural Service of the Embassy of France in Canada works through the five Consulates to implement a cultural policy that focuses on three principal areas: inter-university cooperation, cultural cooperation, and French-language initiatives. Canada and France develop a significant partnership in cultural and digital fields.

Social Asset Management Inc. (SAM) has developed a specialized Content Management System used by prominent news and media organizations worldwide to create and publish social media-based content. SAM is emerging as the leading solution that powers social media news search (news-gathering), curation, publishing (storytelling) and workflow. Customers include Associated Press, Thomson Reuters, Press Association, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, The Guardian, and Toronto Star. Accelerated through CFC Media Lab’s IDEABOOST, the company is revenue generating, has recently raised 1MM+ in financing, has eight employees and offices in Edmonton, Canada and London, England.


For media inquiries, please contact:

Margaret DeRosia
Communications Specialist/Digital Writer & Editor, CFC
(1) 416.445.1446 x 463

Yann le Borgne
Press attaché, Consulate General of France in Toronto
(1) 416.847.1896