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Media Bias

What media bias is, how to spot it, confirmation bias and where to get your news.

What is Media Bias?

Bias is "a particular tendency, trend, inclination, feeling, or opinion" about someone or something. When we discuss bias in media in the US, we are generally referring to conservative (also known as right) v. liberal (also known as left) bias, though there are many more ways to be biased and no one is truly free of bias.

How is Media Bias Different from Fake News?

Bias differs from fake news in that fake news is specifically untrue. Biased sources don't necessarily use lies, they just don't include the whole picture, only using the facts that support their viewpoint. By using only the facts that support their cause they are giving an incomplete and therefore inaccurate picture.

Confirmation Bias

Confirmation bias is tricky. As pertains to news, it basically says that we tend to seek out the sources that confirm our existing bias. We tend to watch just the conservative news, or just the liberal news depending on whether our own beliefs lean toward conservative or liberal.

Not only that, when we view centrist sources, we tend to think of them as leaning to the left or right rather then the center.

Which means we are not getting the whole picture of news and events in our world.

How do you get a more complete picture? Seek out sources that challenge your bias. In other words, get your news from the spectrum of bias: conservative, liberal and centrist sources.

Do Americans trust the news media?

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