Is ABC News Reliable?

As one of the biggest names in news, ABC News is often classified as “mainstream media” and therefore has been the subject of some scrutiny in recent years. The news organization has substantial resources, an extensive network of reporters and journalists, and a clear commitment to journalistic principles, but it has also been accused of having a liberal bias. So, how reliable and biased is ABC News?

Note: This article is specific to online content from ABC News, not its television or other media presence.

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How Credible Is Smithsonian Magazine?

Smithsonian Magazine offers a distinct perspective and style of reporting, particularly in the fields of history, nature, popular culture, arts, science, and archeology. Though much of its content is seemingly apolitical, many of its stories actually cover topics that have become deeply political today in America, such as Covid-19 and climate change. So how biased and accurate is Smithsonian Magazine’s reporting?

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Does the U.S. Spend Too Much on Defense?

The state of U.S. defense spending is often boiled down to eye-catching but incomplete statistics. On one side, the U.S. spends more than the next 11 nations combined, amounting to a grand total of 38% of defense spending worldwide, three times more than China, and ten times more than Russia. Conversely, defense spending as a percentage of GDP is at one of the lowest points since World War II, at somewhere between 3 and 4 percent. Depending on who you ask, the U.S. is either at risk of being unable to cope with 21st-century security challenges, including from actors such as China and Russia, or wasting money hand over fist on unproven, outdated, or irrelevant platforms.

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The Best and Worst Sources for Unbiased News

Some of the simplest questions about the news can be hard to answer. Does CNN produce reliable news? Can Fox News be trusted? How biased is the New York Times?

Ideally, we wouldn’t need to ask these questions. However, a highly polarized political environment and an incessant drive for ad revenue have raised questions about bias and journalistic quality in the last decade. 

Asking for completely unbiased news is a fool’s errand — bias is firmly a part of our world. The best we can do is to know and understand bias, read widely, and prioritize sources that attempt to provide highly factual, objective news. Using The Factual’s algorithm, it’s possible to explore which sites are closest to achieving that standard.

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The Factual’s Media Bias and Credibility Chart

Why Make a Media Bias and Credibility Chart?

With the increasing polarization of the media environment in recent years, many media bias charts have been created, each with a slightly different take on the best way to visualize the news media ecosystem. These tend to have limitations, such as reliance on human evaluators, complicated designs, or too much focus on political classifications. We believe that bias is just one dimension for rating how good a news article is, and ultimately what readers want is to find the most informative news sources. Our intention is to create a simple, easy-to-use resource that focuses solely on the informative quality of news articles. By focusing on key components of what makes an article credible and reliable, we have attempted to reimagine a media bias chart that prioritizes data, not politics.

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What Is The Conversation? 

The Conversation is a not-for-profit news organization that commissions academic authors to publish accessible analysis on trending topics. The site has a unique publishing model, as it relies exclusively on academic authors and the site’s editors to develop timely, incisive journalism. Given the site’s rapid expansion, this article examines The Conversation’s publishing output to assess its reliability, opinionatedness, political bias, and ownership.

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Is Raw Story Reliable?

Raw Story began in 2004 as an alternative news source covering the stories “ignored” by other outlets. Today, it is both widely shared and widely ridiculed. For example, a 2018 study by the Oxford Internet Institute labeled the site as one of the “Top 30 Junk News Sources.” Yet, a Harvard study found that it was the 9th most shared source on Twitter among supporters of Hillary Clinton in the run-up to the 2016 election. So as a site with huge reach, but also huge questions about its content, is Raw Story a reliable news source?

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Is FactCheck.org Reliable?

FactCheck.org is one of the most prominent organizations, alongside sites like Politifact and Snopes, that endeavors to help readers determine what is true and false online. The site has sought to be a voice of neutrality and reason in recent years, including in turbulent times for the online news space, such as during Covid-19 and the 2020 U.S. presidential election. So, how reliable of a source is FactCheck.org?

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Is the Washington Times Biased? 

Originally conceived of as a conservative alternative to the Washington Post, the Washington Times has a checkered past. The paper’s founder was the head of the Church of Unification, what many deem to be a religious cult, but the paper found a sustained audience in Washington, including former president Ronald Reagan, who claimed to have read the paper daily while in office. Today, the paper is recognized for solid reporting on daily news stories but has repeatedly been caught spreading false claims and conspiracy theories. So how reliable of a news source is the Washington Times?

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How Biased Is Jacobin?

Jacobin is an American socialist magazine based in New York. It describes itself as a publication for the new generation of Marxist — a magazine for those who have perhaps not lived through the Cold War yet who nonetheless wish to explore socialist perspectives on politics, business, and culture. Accolades have been given to the magazine, with thinkers like Noam Chomsky cherishing the publication’s “penetrating, lively discussions and analyses of matters of real significance, from a thoughtful left perspective.” Yet, the magazine’s explicit radicalism puts its objectivity and credibility in question. So, how biased is Jacobin?

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