Friday, February 3, 2017


These are the claims each class identified from the text. Spend a bit of time thinking about these in terms of the article and in general in terms of our society. Be prepared to discuss, even if you don't usually talk.

Period 2
  • Self-governance is more essential than governance itself. (par. 5)
  • The press is a serious entity and should focus on real life, not fantasy.
  • The public needs hard information in order to self-govern.
  • The need to make money sometimes leads the media to sacrifice truth for what their audience wants to hear.
  • The American press has often been powerful and sometimes feared.
  • The marketplace can be the ally rather than the enemy of a strong, free media.

Period 3
  • Self-governance is more essential than governance itself. (Value)
  • The press should be a serious member of the media family. (Policy)
  • The need for public news has been a cornerstone of America’s system almost from the start. (Fact)
  • Abraham Lincoln articulated this content most succinctly (value) when he said, “Let the people know the facts, and the country will be safe.”  (Policy)
  • The issue of whether a free press is the best communications solution in a democracy is much too important at the close of this century (fact) and needs to be examined dispassionately. (Policy)
  • The choices (media choices) may be larger, but a case can be made that they are not deeper. (Value)
  • For the public to believe the press, their product must be credible. (Value) (Fact)

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

News Bias Analysis

 Where we get our news seems to matter more and more. Many people, like my dad, live in news bubbles of questionable or downright low quality driven by partisan fervor and advertising profits. To be an educated person in our increasingly fractured society requires that we understand what the news landscape looks like and how the various entities form their arguments.

Your task is this:

  • Pick a news story that will have been reported on and discussed across the spectrum.
  • Read about that from one or more mainstream sources.
  • Then read about it in one or more partisan sources on each side.
  • Lastly, write up you observations about how their bias manifests itself. Refer to the texts to do so. Are the fringe sources telling the whole truth? Lies? Hyper-focusing on something and blowing it out of proportion? Using inflammatory diction? Mocking the other side? Etc. Etc.

Post this on your blog.

News Source Chart in Color (PDF)

As a side note, Bucknell University has this site to help figure out how to determine whether a site is credible or not.