‘TIME’ magazine article on the UP government’s handling of COVID-19 is ‘sponsored content’


A post is shared on social media with a claim that ‘TIME’ magazine published an article praising the government of Uttar Pradesh for its handling of COVID-19. Some handles verified on Twitter also posted the photos in the article with a similar claim. These tweets can be seen here and here. Let’s check the facts of the claim made in the mail.

The archived version of the article is available here.

Claim: ‘TIME’ magazine published an article praising the government of Uttar Pradesh for its handling of COVID-19.

Made: The ‘TIME’ magazine article on the Uttar Pradesh government’s handling of COVID-19 is not written by ‘TIME’. In the upper left corner of the article, “CONTENTS OF UTTAR PRADESH” is mentioned. Many differences can be seen between the article on the government of Uttar Pradesh and the articles written and published by ‘TIME’. In addition, “TIME” clarified to “The Quint” that the article on the management of COVID-19 by the government UP is “sponsored content”. Therefore, the assertion made by post is FALSE.

FACTLY accessed the physical copy of ‘TIME’ magazine (December 21 / December 28, 2020) published in India and searched for the article in the content page, but the title of the article was not mentioned in the content page. If ‘TIME’ wrote and published the article, then the title of the article would have been mentioned in the content page. Additionally, the Uttar Pradesh government article was not found in the international issue of ‘TIME’ magazine.

In the upper left corner of the page ‘CONTENT FROM UTTAR PRADESH’ is written, which implies that it is sponsored content.

The differences in fonts can be seen between the article on the government of Uttar Pradesh and the articles written and published by ‘TIME’. Likewise, differences in font can be observed between TIME’s own articles and ‘LIC’ sponsored content in the same magazine. Also, it can be noticed that there is no page number on the pages where there are such sponsored articles.

‘Newslaundry’ published an article on January 6, 2021 mentioning that several Indian news portals reported similar content, as published in ‘TIME’ magazine, in the first week of December itself. Some of these articles can be read here, here and here. Further, “The Quint” reported that “TIME” made it clear to them via email that the article on the UP government’s handling of COVID-19 is “sponsored content.” FACTLY also wrote to ‘TIME’ for clarification and this article will be updated when they respond.

In summary, the article on the UP government’s handling of COVID-19 in “TIME” magazine is “sponsored content”.

factually



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