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Posted by on Mar 15, 2007 in Media | 28 comments

Zogby Poll: Public Overwhelmingly Think Media Is Biased

A Zogby poll finds that the American public overwhelmingly feel the news media is biased:

The vast majority of American voters believe media bias is alive and well – 83% of likely voters said the media is biased in one direction or another, while just 11% believe the media doesn’t take political sides, a recent IPDI/Zogby Interactive poll shows.

The Institute for Politics, Democracy, and the Internet is based at George Washington University in Washington D.C.

Nearly two-thirds of those online respondents who detected bias in the media (64%) said the media leans left, while slightly more than a quarter of respondents (28%) said they see a conservative bias on their TV sets and in their column inches.

This isn’t good news for the news media. It means that in this day and age when the news media in style and content is seemingly influenced by supermarket tabloids (which have fallen on hard times recently), and by talk radio and cable TV ideological scream fests (those where the guests interrupt and shout over each other, each guest being a “high concept” stereotype of a certain political type) the news media is being perceived as just as biased as anything else.

One potential fallout from this (if other polls echo this poll) is that the powers that be and alternative media will, more than ever, be unfraid of taking on and lambasting the traditional media. Yet, one unanswered question is: if the “old media” standing in terms of perceptions is on the wane, does that automatically mean the “new media’s” perceptions are on the ascent? Or are we moving into this new century with all kinds of media highly suspect — suspect in a time when polarization isn’t an exception but a rule and a way of life?