As part of my "I'M going to do something" resolution, I started following Fox News on Facebook (Fox News national, not a local affiliate station) in an effort to broaden the sources of the news I read and watch. I watch very little television, so most of my news comes from print, websites, radio, and social media posts from news sources. And in that respect, I have a lot of company. Nationwide, an estimated 43% of Americans receive ALL or SOME of their news from social media sites. So what news outlets choose to send out to their followers is important, because this is where media bias begins.
While I have always recognized that the tenor of news coverage varies between networks, I failed to recognize the significant variance in what stories get covered at all. Specifically, I've started noting which news stories were not included on the Fox News Facebook page, that were covered on other major national news media sites (NPR, MSNBC, NBC, CNN,) and vice versa, and keeping a running list on my phone. I've chosen Facebook as the comparison point as it's the largest social media platform.
While I understand that most news Facebook pages do not reflect the entirety of what their broadcasts covered every day, I've focused on the Facebook presence in order to compare apples-to-apples and for the significant sector of the "news-reach pie" that Facebook represents.
I've mentioned my "study" before on Facebook, so if you follow me there, you're probably already familiar with it. As I began to do last week, I will be coming here regularly to update you on where I'm seeing coverage gaps. Because everyone should have as much information available to them as possible in order to formulate their opinions on the issues facing this country.