News Ratings

About Rating System for News Aggregation

Today, we face a serious crisis in American news coverage: professional media outlets have become increasingly polarized, politicized, and compromised.   This degradation of our news media has made it increasingly difficult for serious readers to find news and information that is unbiased, credible, and relevant to current policy debates. 

 

Our current events pages are news aggregation resources and are designed to solve this problem by presenting information that is vetted by a panel of three or more of our trained media analysts.  Below are the categories and questions we use to judge and rate each article:

Objectivity

Scale of 1-5

1 = Very Biased Source

5 = Objective Source

 

Questions we consider to evaluate objectivity and bias:

  1. Does the author clearly “take sides” on an issue or does he offer a fair and balanced view that considers the arguments and evidence on both sides?

  2. Is the tone of the article neutral or does it use loaded language?

  3. Is enough context provided to present the information fairly?

Credibility

Scale of 1-5

1 = Not Very Credible

5 = Established Credibility

Questions we consider to evaluate credibility:

  1. Does the author or cited expert have the authority to speak about this topic or field of study?
  2. What are the credentials, qualifications, or connections to the subject for the author or cited expert?

  3. Does the author cite sources?  If so, are citations and/or links provided so that the information can be verified?

  4. Does this author or organization have a track record of accuracy in reporting?

  5. Do we have any direct relationship with this author or the author’s organization that serves to reinforce their credibility or character?

Relevance

Scale of 1-5

1 = Unlikely to Influence Policy

5 = Central to the Issue,

Likely to Influence Debate

Questions we consider to evaluate relevance:

  1. Does the article highlight information that is both important and urgent to unfolding current events and/or policy debates?

  2. If there is widespread disinformation about this issues, does the article provide information that help to bring illumination and clarity?

  3. Is the complexity of the information appropriate for our audience?

  4. Is this information that leaders could use to bring more clarity to those that they lead or speak to on this issue?