The Blaze Media was created in 2018 as a result of a merger of two companies: TheBlaze and CRTV LLC. TheBlaze was initially founded by Glenn Beck after he had left Fox News in 2011.
Its merger company with CRTV LLC was the original operator of the Conservative Review. In accordance with its reputation, The Blaze has a consistent fanbase that views its content. As seen in this Pew Research survey (from the chart above), not as many people know of The Blaze. Of those who do, they trust the source more than distrust. However, it is interesting to point out that the well-known creator of The Blaze, Glenn Beck, is reported to be more distrusted than trusted.
In this piece, we’ll examine the newspaper’s reporting and editorial choices to see whether there’s any obvious political bias there. Through our investigation, we intend to fully address the question of whether The Blaze is biased as well as offer insight into the elements that often lead to media bias.
Source: Pew Research
How Does Biasly Rate News Sources?
Biasly’s algorithms produce bias ratings to help provide multiple perspectives on given articles. Biasly has analyzed 200,000+ news articles from more than 3,200 news sources through our A.I. technology and team of political analysts to find the most factual, unbiased news stories.
Biasly determines the degree of political bias in news sources by using Biasly’s Bias Meter Rating, in which Biasly’s team analyzes media sources’ reliability and bias and produces three scores, a Reliability Score that measures the accuracy of media sources; an A.I. Bias Score, evaluated by A.I.; and an Analyst Bias Score evaluated by political analysts. These scores are rated based on seven rating metrics including Tone, Tendency, Diction, Author Check, Selection/Omission, Expediency Bias, and Accuracy. These metrics help our analysts to determine the political attitude of the article.
Our A.I. machine-learning system employs natural language processing and entity-specific sentiment analysis to examine individual articles and determine their bias levels. By analyzing the key terms in an article such as policies, bias phrases, political terminologies, politicians, and their nicknames, the algorithms can rate the attitude of the text. Bias scores range from -100% and 100%, with higher negative scores being more liberal and higher positive scores being more conservative, and 0% being neutral.
Is the Blaze Politically Biased?
The Blaze can be known as a consistent conservative news and entertainment source. The articles often utilize very strong and loaded language such as this title, “Target gave $2 million to LGBTQ education organization urging schools to hide gender transitions from parents, wants gender ideology integrated into math classes”. Story selections almost always cater to conservative ideologies with some Christian influence. While they do tend to source from multiple opinions and backgrounds, the way that information is presented to readers suggests bias by the authors.
Biasly’s A.I. Bias Score for the Blaze sits at 68% for being “Very Conservative,” and it gave a Policy Leaning score of 71%, which means it provides political coverage from an American conservative political perspective. The Blaze is often critical of liberal views and politicians while openly supportive of conservatives.
Biasly’s scores closely align with determinations by other third-party bias research agencies. MBFC rated the media source as right-conservative and as questionable source.
Source: Pew Research
Based on this Pew Research chart, it is shown that the vast majority of Blaze consumers are on the political right. Many of the readers of this article are likely on the conservative side, therefore for the remainder of this article, we’ll cover techniques for spotting this bias so you can distinguish between views and facts and improve your knowledge of news consumption.
Before we begin, we need to discuss bias. Bias is a natural function of humans, and we can express it both consciously and unconsciously. Bias is one of the most fundamental forms of pattern recognition in humans. This isn’t to lower the bar and say that “all things are biased,” but to explain the process in which we may come to trust certain news organizations that display patterns of coverage.
On the media’s part, there is an incentive to retain audiences, encourage them to purchase subscriptions, and rate products positively. Bias is a two-way street, people want to see news stories about things they care about, and the media needs viewers to continue their operations. This creates a positive feedback loop that influences what stories are covered and from what perspective. This also explains the actions of more liberal news organizations.
Analysis of Bias in The Blaze Online Articles
Tone, Author, and Diction are the main metrics we’ll concentrate on here because they are some of the most often utilized metrics for determining bias. While connected to but different from diction, which is the writer’s word choice, tone relates to the attitude of the text. The author of the article and their positions on various subjects as expressed in prior publications and social media posts are referenced in the Author metric.
The first article we will look at is titled, “Minority members accuse left-wing climate activist group of racism and tokenization” Biasly has rated this article as 56% very conservative on the Bias Meter. This could be because of the slight negativity against Nancy Pelosi. However, it was found that the tone, tendency, and diction were very average. The author quotes accusations without outright saying that the group is racist. Similarly, in a quote, “But while they ostensibly supported diversity in the climate change movement, some members said behind the scenes they were ignoring and tokenizing them” the author stays neutral in their writing and frames the opinions towards the people in the article rather than their own.
As far as expediency bias is concerned, the title, images, and general format of the article are neutral. The title does not demonstrate extensive bias in either direction and gives a clear summary of the article. The following image of the article is a simple picture of the sunrise group, without any harsh imagery. This is a great sign as the article initially starts out as unbiased.
The tone is very clear from the start of the article as the author initially introduces the left-wing activist group, without any negative commentary on their beliefs. The author proposes the problem, “But while they ostensibly supported diversity in the climate change movement, some members said behind the scenes they were ignoring and tokenizing them.” This statement is very clear and accurately describes the issue at hand.
One issue with this article is the lack of explanation surrounding the reasoning for these statements. While the quotes are direct and come from a left-wing media source, users can be unaware of how these conclusions are drawn. The article lacks elaboration from these individuals and their lives, outside of the quotes. The diction used in this article is not strong for either side and can be considered very neutral.
There is no significant information about the author, Carlos Garcia. However, based on other articles he has written for The Blaze, it can be assumed that he does lean to the right. For example, the title of the article, “Far-left pundit Ana Kasparian has a complete meltdown over the cost of climate change policies: ‘I am freaking the f*** out!’” uses harsh language in the title, outwardly supporting the opposite view.
This source tends to be left-leaning. While it leans left, it would be helpful to have other sources to ensure less bias is occurring and there are more opinions prevenient. To sum it up, the author strives for objectivity and provides select perspectives from sources that seem to favor one side. All this suggests that this article seems to be much more neutral than most of Blaze Media’s articles.
Article bias can vary between articles and authors, even when they are from the same organization, even though this one is in the middle of the range. This highlights how crucial it is to scan each article you come across for indications of bias, such as tone, diction, authorship bias, and omission bias.
To demonstrate, here’s one article that demonstrates right-leaning bias throughout. The article, “Gov. Cuomo declares New York is not ready to follow the science and implement the new CDC mask guidelines” the author, Chris Field, shows a conservative bias. The author does demonstrate a right-leaning expediency bias with the images, title, and summary of the articles. The title of the article includes the statement, “not ready to follow the science,” emphasizing that Governor Cuomo is not readily following the advice of the experts. However, this is not a fact and is more opinionated. The title is more entertaining in nature than factual as it chooses to leave out a general summary of the “new CDC mask guidelines”. The opening image is a picture of Governor Cuomo holding a mask in front of his mouth. This is not necessarily a negative or positive image of the situation, therefore it does not prove any bias. The Biasly AI ranked this article as very conservative, giving it a 46%. Conservative bias is very consistent throughout the article, with statements like “had not decided if he would allow his subjects to enjoy normal life” when discussing Governor Cuomo. This language is almost attack-like, deeming how the author believes Coumo to think, rather than his actual statements or actions. Another statement that opened the article goes as follows, “Americans celebrated the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s new mask guidelines announcement Thursday that said vaccinated people can return to life without masks. Except for New Yorkers.” The author’s tone, as well as the separation from the rest of the paragraph, suggests that he disapproves of the governor’s actions for the state, emphasizing how the CDC stated new mask guidelines.
Analysis of The Blaze Opinion Articles
We must first define the differences between reporting and opinion before we can respond to this issue. Opinions provide a platform for columnists to express their individual views on the most contentious topics of the day, whereas reporting is meant to be objective, providing the reader with the facts and quotes from primary sources to enable them to create their own opinion. Although the analysis above had some parts of factual reporting, The Blaze opinion pieces value expressing an opinion over seeking impartiality.
Consider the opinion article “Joy Reid and guests paint Republicans as terrorists who are ‘starting to kill our kids’.” The title is very targeting of the speaker and shows extensive conservative bias. Specifically, the word “terrorists” has very negative connotations in the United States, and the way the author frames its usage with the speaker “painting” Republicans suggests that there is a stretch of Joy Reid’s words indicating some author tone. Based on the diction of the title alone, it is fair to assume that the author does not seek to be objective and educational of the focused speakers’ opinions and statements.
However, the article “US Marshals locate 225 missing children, including sex trafficking victims, across the nation in ‘Operation We Will Find You’” has a more neutral title that emphasizes educating the reader rather than advancing an agenda. Reliable articles are marked by neutral language and facts from credible sources. Simply by reading the title of the article, one can assume that it will be less biased than previously mentioned.
These pieces, along with those mentioned before, are only a small portion of total The Blaze Media material, but they show that the publication is frequently distinguished by a lot of viewpoints, emphasizing the significance of understanding how to tell subjective writing from accurate reporting.
Who Owns the Blaze?
The Blaze Media is owned by CEO Tyler Cardon and Gaston Mooney. The format of the company has changed over the years as a result of a merger between the original The Blaze and CRTV. The Blaze was originally founded by conservative talk radio personality Glenn Beck, who had left FOX News in 2011. According to an Axios report in 2020, The Blaze media had around a half million subscribers, each paying an average of $102 per year. The company offers a wide range of media including articles, podcasts, and shows. It is essential to understand who runs and operates these businesses when considering the media that they produce.
How to Evaluate and Uncover Bias
It can often be difficult to tell if the news you watch is biased. If you have settled on a news channel, it’s usually because you trust the information you are gaining. Unfortunately, many trust the information they are hearing because it confirms what they already believe. This is referred to as “confirmation bias.” It is important to challenge your beliefs and get third-party verification that what you are hearing is the full story. This is why we recommend using Biasly to compare different news stories side-by-side using our bias ratings to figure out what both sides think of a political issue.
Even though Biasly gave The Blaze a right-leaning 68% score, political bias does vary by article and author, although this source does significantly favor conservatives. General news articles are renowned for being less biased than opinion pieces; other articles kinds will naturally have more or less bias. However, it is important to recognize the style of the author and in what way information is presented to the reader. Although every story you read will be biased to some extent, some articles stick to the facts more closely than others. For this reason, it’s crucial to utilize Biasly’s News Check to identify the bias of the articles you read.