The Fact-checkers Legal Support Initiative (FLSI) is a collaboration between Media Defence and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP). The project relies on the uncompensated outside support of the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN), which provides guidance on the fact-checking ecosystem and its challenges worldwide. 



Media Defence was founded in 2008 because no other organization was providing legal support to journalists under threat. Media Defence works globally to provide legal defense to journalists – supporting individual journalists with financial and technical legal support to defend cases against them, and pursuing impact litigation to bring media laws in-line with international standards. Media Defence also provides financial support to local organizations to build sustainable legal defence capacity at the national level, and supports local litigation capacity by training lawyers on media law and freedom of expression in key regions.



IFCN is a unit of the Poynter Institute dedicated to bringing together fact-checkers worldwide. The IFCN was launched in September 2015 to support a booming crop of fact-checking initiatives by promoting best practices and exchanges in this field. The IFCN promotes basic standards through the fact-checkers’ code of principles and projects to track the impact of fact-checking. IFCN will not be compensated for their support to FLSI.



RCFP was founded by leading journalists and media lawyers in the United States in 1970, when the nation’s news media faced an unprecedented wave of government subpoenas forcing reporters to name their confidential sources. Today it provides pro bono legal representation, amicus curiae support, and other legal resources to protect First Amendment freedoms and the newsgathering rights of journalists. The Reporters Committee serves the leading news organizations in the United States; thousands of reporters, editors, and media lawyers; and many more who use its online and mobile resources.