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Blog 7: Partisan News

With the constant variety of news people have access to today, we have the option to choose where our news comes from and what views are advocated. Obviously, certain news sources have a reputation for leaning to the right, while others are known to lean left. This 2009 study from the Pew Research Center profiles the audiences of Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC based on their political views.

Graphs are great, aren't they?

Predictably, republicans have a tendency to follow right-leaning sources and democrats do the opposite. I don’t think that this is a terrible thing, because people of specific viewpoints can get information and analysis that is pertinent and relevant to them. Following partisan news can, however, prevent people from forming their own opinions, as the talking heads on television are feeding them certain ideas. The fact that Republicans and Democrats get their news from different sources adds to political animosity between the parties. I’m not saying that people aren’t capable of taking the information they hear on TV and simply using it to inform their own views, but I am saying that following partisan news can have an influence over the way someone thinks. If Democrats and Republicans get their news from different, partisan sources, the gap between their positions will be reinforced through the media, but if people of both parties got their information either from the same source or various sources, the facts will take precedence and discourse can ensue.Obviously, not everyone simply follows just Fox News or CNN, but certain people do.

Those evil conservatives...

...those angry liberals

 

And in a hypothetical world in which everyone followed news that advocated their own political views, the overall political discourse would, in my opinion, suffer.

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