A new type of journalist is about to be born in Australia: the professional fact-checker.

Ten years after the trend started in the US with FactCheck.org, the Australian media is belatedly jumping aboard the truth-testing train. Two dedicated fact-checking operations will launch before the September 14 election: an ABC unit to check the claims of public figures and a local version of PolitiFact.com -- a US site that rates political statements on a scale from "true" to "pants on fire". They join Crikey, which has been running a regular fact-checking feature, Get Fact, since August.