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The Quizical Prophecy [views and thoughts from some kansas folks ]

18/10/2004

Main Stream Media Bias Guide

A short list to help you point out the evident or not so evident bias in a article or newscast.
  1. Story tone: If you noticed the difference in tone between a story based on a Republican or vice versa a story based on a Democrat there may be bias evident. For instance if the newsreport concentrates how a Republicans taxcut hurts the poor yet his/her opponents opposition to it is painted to be protective of the poor, then there is bias. To be fair the report should provide the negatives and positives in equal weight for BOTH sides.
  2. Party Dropping: If a story about fraud or malfeasance leaves out the party of the offender or mentions the accusers party affiliation but fails to mention the party of the accused, this is a very subtle sign of bias. For instance recently there was a newsreport on a company that was accused of tearing up voter registration application, they mentioned that they were hired by republicans, failed to mention the accuser had been fired for falsifying information. Meanwhile in Denver the news reported multiple cases of voter registration fraud, yet the party of the offenders was never mentioned, a clear cut case of bias.
  3. News Balance: Is the balance of the news on any given day tilted towards one party or another? A single day though heavily imbalanced is not so much a sign of bias, but if a clear pattern persists of hammering a single issue or party day after day, then you have bias. Sometimes you have to be careful though in filtering the noise to recognize the bias at hand, who are the chosen speakers through out the period in question? Was it more heavily Democrat over the period accusing Republicans or presenting the facts against the other side, are they using human props for the "emotion" affect? A lot of wild cards could be introduced.
  4. FactChecking: Do they present all of the facts or all of the evidence? This is the hardest one probable because most people wont take the time to dig up the facts themselves or find out the rest of the story. This category I also include some of the personal story elements, such as mothers who lost children in Iraq or other places. DO they ever mention the families who lost family memmbers ans still support the war? How about the 911 families what about the Bush supporters (who outnumber Kerry supporters by the way), they always highlight the anti-Bush families. How about the draft story, do they mention all of the facts? On Nightline they never mentioned the fact that the Draft Bill was wholly supported and created by democrats, these sort of things are important to the viewer.

In the end it comes down to the viewer and the people to hold the MSM accountable for there mistakes and bias. Otherwise we are doomed to the personal opinion of a affable guy from Canada or from Texas. Also remember the big lie theory, "tell a big enough lie often enough, people will believe it" .

Remember it is the EVIDENCE not the charge that matters.


Comments:
I'm a big Bush supporter but I think that new Wolves ad comes off as a bit desparate. Between that, and Cheney's constant nucular weapons warnings, I have a hard time arguing to my undecided friends that the President has a solution to the problem. These ads just portray the problem, you know?

One of my co-workers, a Kerry supporter, said that this new ad was our side literally "crying wolf" and that she wondered whether Bush was going to find the Wolves of Mass Destruction in Iraq? This ad is so easy to twist up like that. Why not run more positive ads here?

Anyway not to be too down. God willing, Bush will get another term.
 
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