(Developed from the system of the Poynter Institute)
● AUTHORITY: Is this a recognised expert, or a body with a known reputation?
● AFFILIATION: Is the site connected with a reputable person or organisation?
● ACCURACY: If you can spot mistakes while reading the site, then start worrying.
● APPEARANCE: Is the site well put together? A reliable site may look old-fashioned, but a
sloppy or amateurish presentation could indicate an individual, or some flyby-
● COMPREHENSIBILITY: Does it make sense? (But remember: people writing in a second
language may be less clear than native speakers.)
● CURRENCY: Is it up-to-date?
● LINKS: Look at respected sites on the subject: do they link to the one you are
● PAGE RANK: If you use a Google Toolbar, it will offer a 1-10 rank on how a page is
regarded on the web. Several other search services offer such rankings.
● OBJECTIVITY: Are there signs of bias?
● CREDIBILITY: A simple test: do you believe it? Does common sense tell you it is true?
Don’t feel you should use these criteria every time you check out a site; just be aware of the