-Read the excerpt below from the "Best of the Web" post by's editor James Taranto (original post date 3/15/10).
-Read "Types of Media Bias" in the right column. Then answer the questions.

The press has fallen “out of love” with President Obama, Howard Fineman of Newsweek declares in a highly revealing column:

The “mainstream media” are losing patience with, and even interest in, their erstwhile hero. President Barack Obama never had a chance with the [Fox News] crowd, of course, and it didn’t take the president long to offend the fierce left wing of the blogosphere. But now, finally, the MSM [main-stream media], which views itself as ideologically neutral, has found ideologically neutral reasons to lose patience with him: that he may be ineffectual; that he doesn’t know how to play the game; that he can’t get anything done. Exhibit A: the health-care bill. The [New York] Times’s Frank Rich, the astute dean of the commentariat, wrote recently that Obama has failed to “communicate a compelling narrative” in office and, as a result, “could be toast if he doesn’t make good on a year’s worth of false starts.”

If the “mainstream media” is “ideologically neutral,” does it ever experience “love” for a conservative politician, or view such a pol[itician] as a “hero”? But the fact that Frank Rich, a [biting/sarcastic] left-liberal former theater critic, is “Exhibit A” here rather undermines the claim of neutrality, does it not?

Read the original post at (Scroll half-way down the page for the entry.)

Identifying Media Bias

To accurately identify different types of bias, you should be aware of the issues of the day, and the liberal and conservative perspectives on each issue.

Types of Media Bias:


1.  Define ideological and neutral.

2.  a) Do you think James Taranto has a legitimate point about the press not being ideologically neutral? Explain your answer.
b)  Ask a parent the same question.

Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the answers.


1.  ideological – based on or relating to a particular set of ideas or beliefs [in this case conservative or liberal beliefs] (from

neutral – not saying or doing anything that would encourage or help any of the groups involved in an argument or war (from

2.  a) and b) Opinion questions. Answers vary.