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University of Portland Clark Library

Today's News: Fact or Fiction: Evaluating News Sources

Levels of Bias and Quality in News Sources

Select this screen capture of the Media Bias Chart to go to an interactive version.

View a list of news sources covered in the Media Bias Chart.
Created by Vanessa Otero of ad fontes media.

Lateral Searching

Lateral searching = Getting outside the website you're trying to evaluate. What can you find out about the author, the publication, or the sources cited in an article?


For example:

Because of its extensive coverage, Wikipedia can be a useful way to evaluate publications or the cited sources. The Wikipedia author(s) might help you understand the site's purpose and credibility, and they will cite their sources for claims. Here's an example of how Wikipedia can be helpful:

Screen capture shows Wikipedia article about advocacy group American College of Pediatricians.

In the description above, the Wikipedia author(s) tells you that American College of Pediatricians might have designed its name to be confused with American Academy of Pediatrics. It is socially conservative and has been listed as a hate group. It has been accused by mainstream researchers of mischaracterizing their work.

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