The Onion is a digital humor and satire news source. The AllSides media bias rating for the Onion is Lean Left; AllSides gives this bias rating with low confidence.
Following an independent review on April 27, 2020, AllSides gave The Onion an initial rating of Lean Left. Our reviewer noted that The Onion generates humor and satire content poking fun at both sides, but moreso at right-wing figures and ideas.
A 2016 TIME article referred to The Onion as "left-leaning."
A Feb. 2020 Politico article accused The Onion of going "full-on Bernie Bro," referencing 2020 Democratic candidate for president Bernie Sanders. Writer Derek Robertson stated that while The Onion had "served up equal-opportunity political satire" since 1996, "over the latest presidential cycle, anyone reading closely might notice the site’s treatment of Bernie Sanders looks less like a skewering than an affectionate back rub."
"The Onion" laid out its new ideology unambiguously in an August 2019 piece titled “Democrat Party: Moving Left Vs. Remaining Moderate.” The article is less a series of jokes than a laundry list of familiar complaints from the activist, Bernie-friendly left about moderate Democrats, like criticizing their foreign policy as “10 percent less than whatever Dick Cheney would do.”
Robertson also quotes the site's editor-in-chief, Chad Nackers, as saying, “The Onion started in Madison [Wis.], and people are pretty progressive … a lot of Bernie’s policies are progressive things that we want to back.”
In 2008, Onion writer Tom Hanson told the Washington Post: "I wouldn't say we have the broadest spectrum of political inclinations on our staff, but we're not here to be a pal to liberals or to be a mouthpiece for the Democratic Party. We're here to make fun of things that are dumb."
About The Onion
The Onion is an American satirical digital media company and newspaper organization that publishes articles on international, national, and local news. It is owned by G/O Media Inc., which is owned by Great Hill Partners, a private equity firm. The company is based in Chicago but originated as a weekly print publication on August 29, 1988 in Madison, Wisconsin. The Onion began publishing online in the spring of 1996. In 2007, they began publishing satirical news audio and video online as the Onion News Network. In 2013, The Onion ceased publishing its print edition and launched Onion Labs, an advertising agency.
The Onion runs the website ClickHole, a response to viral sites like BuzzFeed and Upworthy, as well as PatriotHole, an alt-right parody channel.