Platform Health Metrics > Iffy Quotient

Calculating the Iffy Quotient

For more information on our methodology and findings, download our White Paper.

For more complete explanation of the process, and some reflections about limitations of this measurement process, see our report.

Ongoing classification changes for sites 

Changes to the ratings of news and information sites will have an effect on the Iffy Quotient. Those changes might include a site being newly rated for the first time or a site having its previous rating changed. Please see our Ongoing Classification Changes page to learn more and to see a running list of pertinent classification changes.

How Many Sites are Unclassified?

NewsGuard and Media Bias/Fact Check have not investigated every site. Sites that do not appear on any of the NewsGuard or MBFC lists we classify as "Unknown"—neither "Iffy" nor "OK." If NewsGuard and MBFC don't keep up with new sites, over time we would mistakenly misclassify more and more of the truly Iffy sites as unknown. To check for that possibility, the graphs below track the fraction of unknown URLs.

Engagement-Weighted Iffy Quotient

As a supplementary analysis, we also compute an engagement-weighted version of the Iffy Quotient. Rather than treating all popular URLs as equal, we weight them by the estimated engagement scores that NewsWhip provides us. The denominator, then, is the sum of engagement scores for the top 5,000 URLs, and the numerator is the sum of engagement scores for those URLs that are from Iffy sites.

A comparison of the Iffy Quotient based on URL counts vs. engagement scores.


For some interpretations of how the Iffy Quotient has changed over time at Facebook and Twitter, download our White Paper.


To be alerted when there are meaningful changes in the Iffy Quotient for either Facebook or Twitter, sign up for our email alerts.