Mediaite is a politics and opinion website that aims to be “a trusted source on the intersection of politics and media across the political spectrum.” The site blurs the line between politics and entertainment and has been described by the New York Times as a blog that covers “the gossipy media world.” So, how reliable of a news source is Mediaite?

How Does The Factual Rate News Sources? 

The Factual analyzes more than 10,000 news stories every day to help readers find the most informative, least-biased articles. Our news-rating algorithm scores each article along four metrics: (1) cited sources and quotes, (2) publication history, (3) writing tone, and (4) author expertise. These scores combine in a weighted average we call a Factual Grade, which ranges from 0–100%. (See our How It Works page to learn more about our algorithm.)

For this study, we analyzed ~1,000 articles each from 240 news sources. The average Factual Grade for the entire dataset was 62.5%. Based on these averages, we can compare the performance of news sites across the media ecosystem. The entire dataset can be explored in greater detail here.

How Factual Is Mediaite? 

Mediaite scored an average Factual Grade of 61.8%, placing it in the 38th percentile of our dataset. Mediaite articles tend to receive relatively low scores from the Factual’s news-rating algorithm for several reasons. Above all, most articles incorporate highly biased or sensational wording, including titles like “SHOCK POLL: Two in Three Southern Republicans Want to Secede From the United States” and “Biden Slams SCOTUS Justices Over Texas Abortion Law.” Another factor that generates low scores is the site’s tendency to include a limited number of sources or direct quotations with each story.

Like any news source, scores for articles from Mediaite varied widely based on factors like author expertise and cited evidence. For example, some scored above 80%, while others scored below 50%.

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How Opinionated Is Mediaite?

One of the metrics The Factual uses is the Writing Tone, which measures how opinionated the writing is in an article. For this metric, the algorithm looks for signs of subjective commentary (e.g., first person pronouns and unnecessary adverbs), as well as the emotional nature of selected words, and sees how prevalent they are for a given length of text. More neutral text receives higher ratings, with “0” being the most opinionated and “1” being the most neutral.

Mediaite had an average Writing Tone score of 0.44, placing it in the 26th percentile in our dataset. This suggests that articles from the site are commonly highly opinionated and incorporate sensational language or headlines that intend to elicit an emotional response from readers rather than neutrally convey information.

What Is Mediaite’s Political Bias?

The Factual classifies news sites by political bias as either Left, Moderate Left, Center, Moderate Right, or Right. This classification comes from third-party assessments from media bias organizations such as AllSides and Media Bias/Fact Check. Based on this data, The Factual assigns Mediaite a “Left” bias. 

Media Bias/Fact Check (MBFC) classifies Mediaite as “Left” due to “story selection that almost always favors the left.” MBFC warns that the site scores a “Mostly Factual” score for its reporting because of sensational headlines and occasional use of unreliable sources. They point out that Mediaite articles will at times only link to tweets or YouTube videos as a source.

AllSides rates Mediaite as “Lean Left” based on independent research and 2,008 community rankings, though they have low confidence in the overall rating. This rating is incomplete by AllSides' standards, a sign that more research needs to be done.

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Who Owns Mediaite?

Dan Abrams, a media entrepreneur, television host, and chief legal analyst for ABC News, owns Mediaite. Through his company Abrams Media, Abrams owns a collection of sites spanning celebrity gossip, to geek culture, to whiskey. Despite the left-leaning reputation of Mediaite, Abrams has a reputation for supporting both right- and left-leaning perspectives, which is corroborated by his personal website.

Why Does It Matter?

News articles always have some bias because all authors have some frame of reference within which they describe a story. Political bias ratings are helpful in understanding this framing. However, it can be more beneficial to know how factual an article is based on quantifiable metrics that can be seen across the media ecosystem, such as cited evidence, author expertise, and writing tone. This is what The Factual ascertains. 

Reading several, highly rated articles from across the political spectrum helps counter the bias of any news source or story. To have the day’s most factual news stories delivered to your inbox every morning, subscribe to our daily newsletter.

Article updated on September 19, 2022 to reflect new data.

Published by Phillip Meylan

Phillip is a writer, researcher, and editor. At The Factual, he leads research efforts that utilize the company's ever growing data on the media ecosystem. He is also a contributor to FP Analytics, Foreign Policy's research and advisory division, and an adjunct fellow with the Center for Strategic and International Studies.