BIAS IN NEWS REPORTING – KEYSTONE PIPELINE FOX NEWS
Critique of the News Report
The video in focus is about the government’s decision on the keystone project in United States of America. The keystone project was a controversial subject at the time as it was predicted that it would provide many jobs to people and would bring economic benefit to the country. The cause of the controversy was that environmentalists predicted that the project would cause damage to the environment which would amount to the increase of global warming. The decision taken by president Barack Obama was to not go forward with the project which was taken very harshly by people and this news report shows this under a very negative light with the utmost bias as there is not the slightest consideration shown for the environmental damage but the entire focus is upon the “jobs lost” in the process.
The bias is not only due to the views of the interviewee but the subject of the report and the questions and focus of the interviewer is only concerned with one side of the argument while she completely disregards the other vital side of the argument which was a priority for the entire world (global warming) and still is to date as 2014 was declared the hottest year till date. It is the duty of any news reporter to focus on both sides of the conflict and if an interviewee is leaned towards a particular side then it is likely that the reporter should ask him about the reason of not considering about the other side of the issue which in this case, is the issue of the environment.
There is the usage of confirmation bias as the opening statement by the reporter is of a person who has a biased view on the issue and solely focuses on the part where the economic impact is considered and not the long term environmental impact.
There is a heavy usage of framing bias in this news story as the decision by the president is shown under a negative light and it seems that the story supports the views of the opposition party in the current government which is wrong. The reporter deems the actions as anti-development by saying “why is he sticking his neck out for this?” This is a leading question by the interviewer which shows utmost bias by the news channel.
The environmentalists are shown under a very negative light and no environmental implications of the keystone project are shown in the report/interview. The reporter herself projects a negative remark about the environmentalists and the president and is trying to show that the decision is taken to secure the votes of environmentalists and not to stop climate change.
There is overconfidence displayed by the reporter as she says that there are jobs to be created when in reality the number of jobs to be created in reality were minimal. Overconfidence can be seen in the introduction of the governor which displays that “he led Indiana to the first balanced budget in years”. News channels do not need to show the achievements of an interviewee to support his views. This is a direct criticism on the president’s decision on the issue and bias which can be clearly seen through the leading questions of the reporter.