Media Bias, Propaganda, Progressive
When deciding what submissions to process, we attempt to be as objective and transparent as possible. To do that, we have included our definition of media bias and propaganda below.
When deciding what policies or candidates to support, we base our decisions on what we believe it means to be progressive. As progressives, we care about logic, evidence, and intellectual integrity in order to critically think and have constructive conversations about the issues that face our communities, regardless of political party affiliation. We have also included a more thorough explanation of progressive below.
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To define media bias, we start with the basic definitions of bias. Being aware of these most common types of bias helps us to be logical and open-minded when it comes to decision-making.
It’s important for us to keep in mind that everyone has biases. Not one person is exempt. Knowing this, we work hard to be cognizant of our biases in order to increase our level of objective reasoning and we expect the same of others.
Bias is simply the preferential treatment, or disproportionate weight, towards or against something. Sometimes this is done intentionally; sometimes biases are influenced by our unconscious beliefs. Everyone has biases.
Cognitive Bias is the tendency to search for evidence of an assumption we already believe, whether it’s in support of something or against it. This can be done intentionally or unconsciously.
Attribution Bias is the tendency to attribute reasons or motivations for others without concrete evidence, such as assuming a person’s intentions. This can be done intentionally or unconsciously.
Media Bias is the preferential treatment, or disproportionate weight, towards one or more of the following. This can be done intentionally or unconsciously.
- financial donors
- corporate profit and ratings
- political party
- status quo
- upper class
- fellow journalists
A large part of the reason people are frustrated with the media is because of real or perceived media bias. The TYT Army values the very important role of media as a medium of education where people have access to information they need for decision-making. Sometimes corporate media is the only means by which people are informed about important subjects; other times it is a supplemental means of information.
When that information is delivered by the media as objective and factual, but is in fact subjective and loaded with bias, this is harmful to society. The fact that media corporations work hand-in-glove with our government is becoming increasingly alarming. The media, like our government, should be independent and accountable to we the people. The media has a responsibility to being objective over neutral.
While some people in the media do an outstanding job, they are going to make mistakes. This includes independent progressive media as well as establishment media, whether liberal or conservative. In our effort to be objective, unbiased, transparent, and credible – the TYT Army aims to hold all those in the media accountable for their biases, particularly those that negatively impact our communities and their viewers’ ability to critically think.
It’s important to note that we do not assume that media bias is an attempt to spread propaganda and, therefore, are not assuming their intentions. Good people with good intentions can report uninformed stories. We are here to help them do their job of responsible journalism.
Have you found media bias? Send us your submission.
Propaganda is information purposefully used to promote biases in order to persuade a particular audience and further an agenda. While it can be more challenging to identify propaganda because it assumes intention, below are some common characteristics that help us to be more objective in determining propaganda vs bias:
- Blatantly false information that can be verified
- Theories, arguments, conclusions made without evidence
- Evidence provided by media as objective when it is biased towards those who funded or conducted the research
- Refusing to address misinformation regardless of new evidence
- Not being transparent about biases and instead claiming to be objective
It is possible for media bias to be devoid of propaganda, but all propaganda is media bias. Understanding this helps the TYT Army to decide on how to approach a story or viral online product. If it is media bias minus propaganda, we recognize the contribution and effort of the journalist, and insist that they correct their story and work to be more objective moving forward. If it is media propaganda, or circulating propaganda online (such as memes and conversations), we will address these directly and firmly in order to end this harmful degradation of our communities.
Have you found propaganda? Send us your submission.
There is some confusion around the term “progressive.” As a result, it has been easy for establishment Democrats to co-opt the term in an attempt to maintain support and power. At the same time, conservatives and independents often conflate establishment Democrats with progressives. To address this, we have clarified our definition of the term “progressive” in an effort to be open and honest about who we are and how we make decisions as the TYT Army.
Progressives make decisions about the policies and issues that affect our everyday lives based on 8 fundamental principles:
- Evidence-based Decision-making. Decisions about policies that are voted on by legislators should be based on evidence-based research that considers the credibility of who funded and who performed the research.
- Objective-based Decision-making. When evidence-based research is presented that counters our original conclusion, we work to not allow our biases, personal feelings, or opinions get in the way of being willing to change our mind.
- Policy over Politics. Policy over Party. Decisions about policies that are voted on by legislators should be made based on the merits of the issue and proposed solutions, regardless of which party is championing the policy.
- People over Profit. When competing interests arise, the best interest of people should always be a priority over profit.
- Planet over Profit. When competing interests arise, the best interest of the planet should always be a priority over profit.
- Expanding Circle of Liberty. Ensuring that all human beings – regardless of race, gender, sexuality, creed, or economic privilege – have the freedom to live the life they choose so long as it does not infringe on another person’s freedom to do the same.
- Equality of Opportunity. Ensuring that all human beings – regardless of race, gender, sexuality, creed, or economic privilege – have the same opportunities to live the life they choose.
- Accountable Government Dependent on The People Alone. We insist that our representatives in government operate free of the corrupting influence of money from all entities. While corruption expands beyond money’s influence (e.g. human nature to seek power), we can better hold our government accountable for their decisions when the money they receive for their campaigns is only from individuals and is done so in a manner that is fair to all, regardless of economic opportunity.
Have you thought of something we haven’t? Do you have a question for us? We welcome and rely on your feedback.