Measuring Media Bias…Is it Possible?

Bias, bias, bias. We all say it’s there but we all disagree over what it is and where it can be found. Well in the midst of this he said/she said world comes a company that’s trying to objectively measure bias in the media. The company is called Mediate Metrics and rather than I tell you what it’s about here’s a quote from their about page.

Based in Wheaton, IL, Mediate Metrics LLC is a privately held start-up founded by technology veteran and entrepreneur Barry Hardek. Our goal is to cultivate empowered consumers of political news by objectively measuring media “slant” — news which contains either an embedded statements of bias (opinion) or an elements of editorial influence (factual content that reflects positively or negatively on U.S. political parties).

Mediate Metrics’ core technology is based on a custom machine classifier designed specifically for this application, and developed based on social science best practices with recognized leaders in the field of text analysis. Today, text mining systems are primarily used as general purpose marketing tools for extracting insights from platforms such as like Twitter and Facebook, or from other large electronic databases. In contrast, the Mediate Metrics classifier was specifically devised to identify statements of bias (opinions) and influence (facts that reflects positively or negatively) on U.S. political parties from news program transcripts.

I first became fascinated by this site when I read its latest Impact Ratings on TV News Political Bias for the week of Jan 16-20 which showed NBC News out flanking FNC on favoring the Republican Party while MSNBC was shown being the most favorable to the Democrat Party.

This data can be broken down by show level even as this TV News Political Slant Report by Show for Jan 16-20 shows.

I can’t think of another organization that has tried to take on measuring bias in the TV media in the manner Mediate has. Their processes are no doubt evolving but I feel more confident in this system accurately doing what it says it’s trying to do than I do Mediaite’s Power Grid.

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17 Responses to “Measuring Media Bias…Is it Possible?”

  1. Mediaite’s power grid is very inaccurate. People are still high on the list long after they’ve moved on or retired.

  2. You noticed. That’s just one of that system’s many flaws.

  3. Oh, bias schmias. It ain’t bias if your telling the truth. Like me.

  4. you’re your there their they’re to two too sit sat set cent scent sent

  5. My favorite part of the article was “like such as”..

  6. You wrote:
    “MSNBC was shown being the most favorable to the Democrat Party.”

    The Democrat Party? Really.

    Did you need to go there? You must know how that this annoys some on the left who might otherwise enjoy reading your website.

    Even Fox News refers to it as the “Democratic Party”.

  7. “Did you need to go there? You must know how that this annoys some on the left who might otherwise enjoy reading your website.”

    ^^Spud is generally pretty neutral in political matters; so I assume it’s just a misspelling.

    I feel that whenever a pundit uses Democrat in place of Democratic the host and other pundits should start to refer to the Republicans as Republics. Good for the goose etc.

    “Even Fox News refers to it as the “Democratic Party”.

    ^^ Really!!! 🙂

  8. Rush does that all the time. I really couldn’t give a crap, but it still manages to annoy.

  9. “Democrat” is highly offensive!

    “Tea Baggers”
    “Repiblicons”
    “N@zis”
    “FAUX News”
    “Willard”

    And so on are all acceptable. But “Democrat” is a HIGH insult, and probably racist.

    Ugh. Talk about hypocritically thin skin.

  10. “Democrat” is highly offensive!”

    ^^ No one but you said that it was “highly offensive”. MT said it was annoying that’s all and in that he’s correct.

    “And so on are all acceptable. But “Democrat” is a HIGH insult, and probably racist.”

    ^^ Again no one – except you – said these words were acceptable and, of course, you are the only one bringing race into the discussion.

    “Talk about hypocritically thin skin”

    ^^ You should know. 🙂

  11. “No one said…”

    Yeah. Excellent point. Because we’ve never seen the “Democrat is highly offensive” meme before this point. And we’ve never seen the those very same folks use the other terms I listed, and then complain about “Democrat.” Nobody here has read Mediaite, so we’re unaware of such things.

    (PS- The “racism” line was sarcasm, mocking the kneejerk reaction from the left to call everything “racist” these days. Get it? The above paragraph was also sarcasm.)

  12. Hmmm…

    – Someone is a Republican and belongs to the party of Republicans… The Republican Party.
    – Someone is a Democrat and belongs to the party of Democrats… The Democratic Party. Someone does not belong to the party of Democratics.

    I think for many, “Democratic Party” just doesn’t sound right (it doesn’t , really) and so it is easy to make the mistake. This explanation doesn’t include Rush Limbaugh, of course, because he does it on purpose and for a purpose: a democratic nation is good but Democrats are bad. Hard to believe he does this with half his brain tied under his… n’ermind.

  13. Rush’s thing is that he doesn’t call it the “Democratic” Party because there’s nothing ‘democratic’ about it Whatever. The fact that it needs explaining means that it’s just some stupid thing that he does, more verbal tic than anything meaningful. He has a lot of things like that. The ‘tics’ continue long past the point where even a regular listener might remember the origin, Then the ‘explanation’ becomes part of the schtick, and at that point you pretty much want to smack him. Like Hannity.

  14. […] in large part to coverage initiated by Inside Cable News, interest in our media bias/slant rating system has increased dramatically. Rather than field all […]

  15. savefarris Says:

    Let’s all be accomodating to Michael and the rest of the Democratics.

  16. To @savefarris:
    Isn’t “the rest of the democratics” like saying “the rest of the aristocratics or the rest of the autocratics?” 🙂

    Perhaps we should add a new word to the eight parts of speech called a nounjective for those who like to say “democrat party”. Just askin’.

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