Identifying Bias: is it "fake news?"
A. Who wrote the article? (It could be an individual or an institution).
B. Does the author have credentials in this area?
C. What is their stake in making this argument? In other words, why do they care?
A. Who published it? (Sometimes the author and publisher are the same, as on some websites or blogs)
B. Who pays to produce this publication or who sponsors it? What does that tell you about the bias?
C. Who is the audience? What does that tell you about the bias?
3. Read Beyond
A. Does the story have an attention grabbing headline?
B. Does the material in the website back up claims in the headline?
C. Are there supporting sites or quotes/commentary from experts in the field?
D. Does this story draw on facts or emotion?
A. Does the author present his argument in extreme language? Does he write to appeal to emotions? If so, provide some examples.
B. Does the author use value-laden terms that lend a negative impression (as in ‘illegal aliens’ versus ‘undocumented workers’). If so, provide some examples.
Overall, is this a trustworthy news story? Use criteria to evaluate a source. In Libraries, we often use the CRAAP Test* to evaluate websites, and these criteria are useful for evaluating news as well. These criteria are:
So, finally, does your news source pass the CRAAP Test?