Letter: On media bias | VailDaily.com

Letter: On media bias

Ghanaian Proverb: “One lie can destroy a thousand truths.”

There is a difference between media bias and outright inaccurate/fabricated or misleading information (propaganda). Media bias can help sway people’s social or political leaning. The latter can tear a country apart.

There are companies that rate media bias that are available on the internet. You can review their methods, and compare their reports. Their criteria and terms differ, but they use a wide range of analysts and methods and different political and social leanings. They include AdFontesMedia.com, Mediabaisfactcheck.com and Allsides.com. Adfontes’ chart form illustrates degree of bias, providing more categories. Some companies lump all types of programs together when rating one media source. Others separate news from opinion articles, rating each category separately. Ratings vary accordingly.

With more than 1,400 media sources, not all are listed or monitored, but one can search for non-listed sources. For most straightforward reporting, terms are “least bias, center, middle, fact reporting.”

Most media outlets will have articles or programs that are both to the left or right. Leaning right or leaning left doesn’t mean the reporting is not good or accurate. Just like center or middle doesn’t mean the reporting is the best. One can identify extreme bias or misleading information when noticing the use of name calling or dehumanization, or the article appears to be hyperpartisan.

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Listening to and reading a variety of news outlets and fact-checking possibly can help reduce misunderstanding and partisanship. Some outlets that are considered fact-based reporting by at least two rating companies include: The Associated Press (AP), Reuters, UPI, Axios, NPR, The Hill, BBC, USA Today, CBS, CNBC, ABC, Christian Science Monitor, PBS News Hour, Wall Street Journal (news only). When doubting a report, go to FactCheck.org or PolitiFact.com for accuracy.

Cheryl Moskal

Denver and Vail

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