Sunday, December 18, 2005

Quantifying Media Bias

A new UCLA-led study employed a fresh methodology to examine the issue of bias in the media. Nearly three years in the making, the team of researchers believe they have made the "the first successful attempt at objectively quantifying bias in a range of media outlets and ranking them accordingly." The study involves comparing the political leanings of politicans with that of major media outlets. The results will be published in the December issue of The Quarterly Journal of Economics.

Here are a couple of quotes from the studies' authors:

"I suspected that many media outlets would tilt to the left because surveys have shown that reporters tend to vote more Democrat than Republican," said Tim Groseclose, a UCLA political scientist and the study's lead author. "But I was surprised at just how pronounced the distinctions are."

"Overall, the major media outlets are quite moderate compared to members of Congress, but even so, there is a quantifiable and significant bias in that nearly all of them lean to the left," said co‑author Jeffrey Milyo, University of Missouri economist and public policy scholar.