We’re at a strange place in our society where news and information are available at the touch of a button and from an endless array of sources. Still, their reliability is more suspect than ever before. The digital age has put the power to make thoughts, opinions, and personal agendas publicly available into the hands of the everyday person, and you would be hard-pressed to distinguish whatever they’re putting out there as fact or fiction.

Viafoura’s software suite promotes discussion, engagement, and community establishment around brands and we strive to work only with reputed and trusted digital media brands. 

But the amount of misinformation out there makes those few reputed media outlets and brands that much more valuable and necessary. But even amongst more well-known news sources, there’s the unmistakable influence of bias, which forces viewers and readers to take in all provided information through tinted lenses. As a result, digital media brands that genuinely wish to serve as a source of unbiased news and information need to review their policies and approaches towards their publications. 

Thankfully, there are still unbiased news sources available on the web that can be relied on to provide factual, objective, and trustworthy content, which including those digital media brands that are working with our digital experience platform. Let’s go over some of the considerations that need to be made when vetting a news source and some places where you can find responsible content.

Can reliable news sources really be completely free of bias?

It’d be fantastic if we could believably claim that even the best new sources were capable of acting wholly neutral and free of all bias. But it’s our opinion that news isn’t really delivered to us intact – it’s reported, which means that someone tells us the story. So maybe when scientists develop some fantastic AI capable of truly neutral reporting, we can expect a sober, entirely unbiased view of what’s happening. 

But the news is gathered and given to us by individuals who have their own thoughts, ideas, and perspectives. This fact holds across all facets of news media, from television to newspaper columns to web articles. Digital media brands may strive to keep up to high standards and function as neutral news sources, but it is still the individual that shapes the message of each article and feature story. 

And bias isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Opinion articles are often some of the most popular posts made on news outlets because they resonate more strongly with certain readers and spark responses and counterarguments from others. Our Conversations and Community Chat features find the most use on pages like these that prompt discussions and stimulate healthy and civil discourse. The issue arises when bias prompts certain digital media brands to spread misleading and non-factual information as the whole story. 

How do you determine if a source provides unbiased news?

We’ve established that unbiased news sources are essential but also harder to distinguish from those that skew the facts and details for their benefit. But it might not be clear how everyday individuals can make sure they’re looking in the right places for their news. So here’s a checklist that you can use to determine if the source you’re looking at is likely to be offering unbiased news.

Unbiased News sources

References or Publication in Libraries

Libraries work on a non-profit basis, and as such, have no reason to push an agenda or skew the facts towards a specific interpretation. News details that can be corroborated with articles in library databases are much more reliable as news sources. These sources will make it very clear if any part of their information is based on their perspective or opinion.

Pulitzer Prize-Winning outlets

Newspapers, magazines, or websites that have earned the Pulitzer prize have met the awarding committee’s criteria for excellence in news reporting and journalism. Any member of this group can be considered an excellent source of unbiased news that’s sure to give you the facts from as objective a standpoint as possible.

Outline their sources when possible

Some news and media outlets will draw from other resources or references to obtain statements and details, and unbiased news sources will have no problem explaining exactly where they got their information. In addition, reliable new sources offer names, positions, and sometimes even the dated timeframe when they obtained their information. Some of the more academic publications might provide related readings and sources as a supplement to the article.

Top reliable sources for unbiased news

These are some, but not all, of our favourite sources of information for unbiased news in North America, in no particular order. You can’t go wrong with getting your info from these outlets.

CBC

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation has had a longstanding reputation as one of Canada’s most reputable and reliable sources. They have recently spoken out on the crisis of faith in journalism and the steps that they have taken to restore it. Their commitment to excellence and factual accuracy in new reporting has stood the test of time, and they remain an excellent source of unbiased news even today.

Toronto Star

Founded in 1892, the Toronto Star has served as the mainstay of journalism and news reporting in one of Canada’s most densely populated regions. They hold highly detailed and admirable journalistic standards that they make publicly available and are committed to accuracy and truth in their publications.

Tribune Publishing

As the head of such illustrious outlets as the Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, and the Orlando Sentinel, Tribune Publishing is known throughout the East Coast as a digital media brand that works towards responsible and factual reporting in journalism. They have continued to push to inspire and inform communities down to the local level, making them a great source of relevant, unbiased news in their respective areas of publication.

The Philadelphia Inquirer

The Inquirer boasts of almost 200 years of journalism that has been for the benefit of the people. Having won Pulitzer prizes for their high integrity and public-focused brand of new reporting, they continue to act as one of the most trustworthy and dependable new sources available on the web today.

The New York Times

The New York Times has won 132 Pulitzer prizes throughout its publication and is recognized globally within the industry as a newspaper that sets the standard for journalism and news reporting. Even amongst reputed news sources, it is well known for its dedication to getting the facts right and providing an unbiased version of events and information in its reporting. Although recent public views have thrown unnecessary doubt onto their commitment to responsible reporting, the New York Times remains one of the best sources of unbiased news, period.

Takeaway

Reporting on a topic is much easier than it was a few decades ago, and news outlets have become so varied and diverse that it’s difficult to know if you can rely on the news you come across. However, there are still ways that the public can assess the content that’s presented to them to decide on whether it sounds legitimate or not. On top of this, there are still several unbiased news sources that can be relied on to provide news in these uncertain times.

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If you’re looking to establish your own digital media brand as a reputable news source, engagement and connection with your community is the key to success. Building a community around your brand will get your audience talking about your credibility and sharing it with their circle of acquaintances, which leads to a higher public opinion of your brand as a whole. Viafoura has several products that we offer as part of our software suite that can help you achieve this engagement and promote your brand as a reliable, unbiased news source. Contact us today to schedule a demo to learn more!

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