Infographic: Is liberal media bias fact or fiction?

Liberal media bias, fact or fiction?

4th Estate data does not support the thesis of a liberal media bias as it relates to Election 2012 coverage. If anything, the 4th Estate analysis, which includes multiple data points, suggests a media bias toward both Mitt Romney and Republicans. In news stories and broadcast transcripts that analyzed over the last 3 months, newsmakers appearing in the media as partisan Republicans are quoted at a 44 percent higher rate than partisan Democrats. Additionally, the ratio of positive to negative coverage was 17.1 percent more critical of Obama than Romney. 4th Estate processed 717 articles and 15,357 quotes collected between May 1 and July 15, 2012.

For more information about specific topics and media outlets, please go to the 4th Estate website, where you can also download a slightly larger version of the info graphic.

About this data

The 4th Estate, a national firm based in Montpelier, collects data from a sampling of news stories from US national print outlets, TV broadcast and radio transcripts covering the 2012 election. These stories are contextually analyzed and broken down by influence, topic, sentiment and newsmaker. The data for this graphic includes quotes and statements from newsmakers who provide subjective insight. Statements from candidates are included in the count. The 4th Estate’s parent company, Global News Intelligence, provides similar influence analysis services for government and Fortune 500 companies.

Comments

  1. john burlew :

    I don’t believe liberal bias is intended to label commentators. The liberal bias tag is generally considered for those who portend to deliver the objective news. Sean Hannity and Rachel Maddow are commentators thus they have a subjective point of view and are biased. Tamron Hall and Shepard Smith are anchors and should have an objective point of view.

    An example of what may be considered media bias is Walter Cronkite’s commentary that ended his half-hour broadcast on the “CBS Evening News” with the observation the Vietnam War was in stalemate and negotiations offered the only way out.

    Just to be clear, your data said you observed subjective comments not objective comments.

  2. Mike Kerin :

    The “liberal bias” is fiction. The media today is made up of rich reporters who want to keep more of their excessive pay. They get greedy when they find themselves in those lofty positions with excessive salaries.
    That’s my opinion.

  3. I’ve noticed an interesting difference in what self described liberals and self described conservatives use to support their contentions of liberal or conservative bias:

    Conservatives will point to the oped pages as evidence, but the liberals will refer to the news reporting.

    Personally I’m in line with those who view how the news, not opinion, is reported as evidence of a bias – and when viewed through this lense there is definitely a general bias towards government and big business and war.

  4. David Carter :

    Liberal bias in the media is a myth, and a stellar example of how much the corporate controlled media has been able to dupe the average person with the “if you say a lie often enough, people will believe it’s true” approach.

    Major media outlets are controlled by rich corporate moguls, who rely on sponsorship from huge corporations. These groups (often Big Pharma, Big oil, Big Banks, etc.) are interested in profits, and do not want their frequent acts of malfeasance exposed, and most lapdog journalists are more than happy to oblige in order to maintain good paying jobs.

    I find it amazing that people will cite NPR as an example of liberlal media. Last time I listened, I heard things like this segment sponsored by Monsanto, GSK, etc. With corporate crooks like these guys calling the shots, I don’t think there’s going to be objective reporting, and certainly not a liberal bias.

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