Deseret News has a Lean Right AllSides Media Bias Rating™.
During a July 2021 Independent Review, AllSides editors from the left, center and right gave Deseret News an initial bias rating of Lean Right, though we acknowledged it may have been closer to Center-Right.
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July 2021 Independent Review and Self-Proclaimed Bias of Deseret News
Shortly after rating Deseret News and adding them to Version 5 of the AllSides Media Bias Chart in July 2021, AllSides editors continued to wrestle with whether Deseret was more Center or more Lean Right. We determined that a focus on stories of faith, family, and American history gave them a slight right lean, because these issues in modern America are largely perceived to be to the right of center (whether they ought to be or not is a different issue). We did acknowledge that on some days, the homepage appeared more Center, and on other days, more Lean Right.
Then on July 18, 2021, Deseret News responded to accusations that Deseret has a left-wing agenda. Deseret executive editor Hal Boyd seemed to largely endorse our Lean Right rating in his piece titled, "Opinion: No, the Deseret News doesn’t have a ‘leftist agenda’."
Boyd noted that he is a conservative, and pointed to the AllSides Media Bias Rating of Deseret News as Lean Right to emphasize that Deseret has a conservative lean.
Speaking of the AllSides' Media Bias Rating and other media bias rating services that have rated Deseret as "balanced", "center-right" and "“slightly” favoring “conservative ideas and causes," Boyd commented (emphasis ours): "To me — having been around the Deseret News as a reporter, as an opinion editor, as a columnist and now in my current capacity — these assessments track with my experience. The Deseret News doesn’t seek to evince an overtly partisan agenda, but, broadly speaking, the publication cares deeply about issues surrounding faith, family and the way prudent life choices and community voluntarism impact human flourishing and upward mobility. In other words, the Deseret News cares about issues that are widely considered — rightly or wrongly — conservative."
He also noted that "not every issue the Deseret News writes about fits into a neat and tidy partisan category," continuing:
"...in the spirit of the First Amendment, the Deseret News doesn’t shy from actively publishing a spectrum of reasonable perspectives in order to foster, and hopefully model, the kind of healthy dialectic that is often absent in today’s discourse. In 2016, for instance, the Deseret News published essays from Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. In the run-up to 2020, the Deseret News ran pieces from Mike Pence and Kamala Harris."
About Deseret News
The Deseret News started out as The Deseret Morning News in 1840 when the territory of Deseret included parts of California, New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, and Oregon. Today it is known as the first news organization and the longest continuously-operating business in the state of Utah. Owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the source sought to provide these communities' news, sports coverage, business, arts and opinion, which is it's continued focus today.