This past weekend I was listening to a “talking head” refer to some Harvard study on media bias, so I decided to check it out for myself. The fact is, it’s hard to find any study on media bias more current than 2008. There were a couple I came across that were worth mentioning, however.
“The Quarterly Journal of Economics,” in August of 2007, referred to “The Fox News effect” and its impact on voting. The study could have been titled, “How voters react when they hear news other than our biased version of the news.” This journal is a production of Harvard University, and “… it is invaluable to professional and academic economists and students around the world,” according to themselves.
“The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology,” from 1985, which is published by The American Psychological Association, tried to address “the biased perception of media bias.” If we stake it a step further, can your biased perception be biased? Let’s just leave that one alone.
Also, while checking out some of these studies, I stumbled across an article that I found interesting. It is titled: “Trump’s Getting Killed In The Media, But Not Because Of Bias.” It is by someone named Mark Joyella, who is a contributor to Forbes Magazine.
In his article he refers to a report from the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center of Media, Politics and Public Policy, which is pictured with my blog here. Only a member of the biased mainstream media could “spin” this chart into meaning anything even close to fair.
Mr. Joyella’s premise is: “If your favorite football team gets destroyed by another team, and the local newspaper writes a story about the game, is the resulting news story–which paints an ugly picture of your team’s performance–an example of the newspaper’s bias against your beloved team? Of course not. But that’s essentially what some conservative media believe when it comes to coverage of the Trump White House. In their view, since most coverage of Trump is negative, that proves the media is biased against the president.”
In my view, Mr. Joyella’s analogy is biased in its own right. What Mr. Joyella conveniently “forgot” to mention is that my favorite football team had won five games in a row prior to getting “destroyed,” but the local newspaper never bothered to give them credit for that or even cover those games. In fact, although the team is very popular with the locals, the local newspaper seems to have a vendetta against the team, and rarely reports on anything positive, choosing only to focus on the negative.