Monday, February 20, 2006

Media Bias

There's a great new report on Media Bias that has just been released. What's even greater is Media Matters for America's debunking of the new report.

Apparently they decided to see how many times reporters referenced political organizations and think tanks. If they referenced Conservative Think Tanks they were skewing conservative and if they referenced Liberal Think Tanks they were skewing liberal. Easy enough, although it begs the question of what to do if they quote an organization and an individual with different view points. Obviously they heap the organization on the scale, ignore the individual, and judge the story biased.

The best part, however, is how they determine the liberalness or conservativeness of an organization. If a Conservative or Liberal senator quotes an organization approvingly, well, that organization must be more to his way of thinking. So if Bill Frist quotes the ACLU, well, the score of that organization moves a little to the right. But wait, don't senators often try to quote from organizations on the other side of the fence so as to appear more non-partisan and "cool?" I mean everybody knows that Dick Cheney is buds with the NRA (although not a good example of gun safety apparently), but when Harry Reid quotes them approvingly, that looks good.

At any rate, according to this methodology, the ACLU falls, just barely, on the Conservative side of the fence. That probably tells you all you need to know about this methodology.

But for our friends, the conservatives, they'll probably buy off on any survey that tells them what they want to hear.

Anyway it's a good and thorough debunking, covering a lot more than I just referenced - go check it out.

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