Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News

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#35 | POSTED BY CORKY AT 2018-10-23 12:33 AM

Leave it to Dorkus to love this site, which the Columbia Journalism Review calls "an amateur attempt" at bias analysis:

Currently, media critics have access to a few analysis tools that make investigations of bias and balance more rigorous. For the most part, the techniques being developed in academic circles aren't being applied in a way that could inform journalists or readers. Of course, none of these measures in isolation reveals whether a newspaper or network is "biased."

Amateur attempts at such tools already exist, and have found plenty of fans. Google "media bias," and you'll find Media Bias/Fact Check, run by armchair media analyst Dave Van Zandt. The site's methodology is simple: Van Zandt and his team rate each outlet from 0 to 10 on the categories of biased wording and headlines, factuality and sourcing, story choices ("does the source report news from both sides"), and political affiliation.

A similar effort is "The Media Bias Chart," or simply, "The Chart." Created by Colorado patent attorney Vanessa Otero, the chart has gone through several methodological iterations, but currently is based on her evaluation of outlets' stories on dimensions of veracity, fairness, and expression.

Both efforts suffer from the very problem they're trying to address: Their subjective assessments leave room for human biases, or even simple inconsistencies, to creep in.

We can probably measure media bias. But do we want to?

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