Bias

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Summary:

Explore: Media bias, journalism, hard news versus opinion, freedom of the press, the role of the news consumer, media ethics.

Most news organizations strive for clarity, fairness and accuracy, yet the public often gives the media low marks for credibility. Veteran journalists Chris Wallace, Dan Rather, Brian Williams, Brit Hume and Juan Williams share insights into the causes of media bias and how journalists and news consumers can work to restore objectivity.

Introduction:

This video and viewing guide examine the issue of media bias, or reporting that favors one perspective or position on a story. As human beings, we all have biases, and journalists are no different, but most journalists strive to overcome their personal biases and report the objective facts of the story.

This unit looks at the ethical guidelines journalists attempt to follow and why the news media sometimes fall short of the goal of objective reporting. Learn more about our role as news consumers in identifying and discouraging media bias, while navigating an increasingly broad and diverse media landscape.

Recommended grade levels: High school; college

Essential Questions:

  • What is "bias"? Is bias inherent in the news media?
  • What can news consumers do about bias in the news business?
  • How does freedom of the press function in today's society?
  • Should the news media follow ethical guidelines? Which guidelines, and why?
  • What is our role as news consumers?