During an AllSides Blind Bias Survey, participants from all sides of the political spectrum are asked to rate the content of a media outlet blindly, so they are not influenced by preconceived notions of a brand's bias. Blind Bias Surveys are one of the most robust methods used to inform AllSides Media Bias Ratings™. Read the whitepaper to review our methodology.
Media outlets evaluated for bias in the November 2020 Blind Bias Survey were:
The results led us to change the AllSides Media Bias Rating™ for CNN from Lean Left to Left, affirmed our ratings for Fox News (Lean Right) and Politico (Lean Left), and raised questions about our ratings for Reuters (rated by AllSides as Center, though survey results came out as a clear Lean Left) and New York Post (rated Lean Right by AllSides, though survey results put it between Center and Lean Right). The survey triggered Editorial Reviews for New York Post and Reuters; we opted to keep New York Post news as Lean Right, and Reuters as Center (but plan further review soon).
We also published individual blog posts explaining the results:
- AllSides Moves CNN’s Bias Rating to Left
- Fox News: Blind Bias Survey Affirms Lean Right Bias Rating
- Survey: New York Post’s Bias Between Center and Lean Right; AllSides Keeps Lean Right Rating
- Politico: Blind Bias Survey Affirms Lean Left Rating
- Reuters: Survey Returns Lean Left Bias; AllSides Keeps Center Rating
About the Survey
A total of 2,285 people took the survey — 266 participants with a self-reported Left bias; 572 with a Lean Left bias; 679 with a Center bias; 615 with a Lean Right bias, and 136 with a Right bias.
For this survey, AllSides collected two types of content from media outlets: top headlines from two different days at the same time of day, and top stories the outlet ran around two major national news stories on two different days. Stories and headlines were stripped of branding and any information that would allow participants to identify the outlet. Participants were asked to rate the bias of the source on a scale of Left, Center, Lean Right, and Right.
Note About Blind Bias Surveys
Note that blind surveys do have limitations and they alone do not always determine our ratings, because these surveys ask respondents to assess a relatively small snapshot of the source's content in time. The surveys don't include photos, content published over a long period of time, or other elements. Therefore, we also use other methods to arrive at a final bias rating, such as Editorial Reviews, third party data and independent reviews.
AllSides uses multiple methods for calculating media bias ratings.
Our blind bias survey, described in the graphic below, represents our most robust media bias rating method, but it is not the only method we use. A source might openly share its bias, or it may be determined by third party research, an independent review, or an editorial review. Take a look at the multiple methods AllSides uses to measure and rate media bias.