Maarten Schenk | Lead Stories

Maarten Schenk is the co-founder and COO/CTO of Lead Stories and an expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet. He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking viral misinformation.

He won the 2020 "De Zesde Vijs" award from, a foundation in Belgium that promotes critical thinking and fights against pseudoscience. In 2022 he published a book called "De Fake News Files" (in Dutch) about his experiences co-founding and running a fact checking website that grew from two reporters to over seventy people working in a dozen countries.

The Trendolizer engine which is used at Lead Stories to detect and monitor trending fake news stories is Maarten's brainchild.

Before co-founding Lead Stories, Maarten worked in speech recognition at Lernout & Hauspie (technology now part of Nuance), project management & blogging at Skynet, weblog software at Six Apart and social media trends at Distractify.

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Lead Stories is a fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, misleading, deceptive or inaccurate stories, videos or images going viral on the internet.
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