The Subtlety of Bias

Dave Killion — March 12, 2011

The Guardian has a recent opinion article on the costs of eliminating a rise in Britain’s fuel tax, written by Caroline Lucas. Given that Lucas is a Green Party MP, I expect her view to lean in a particular direction, and it is well that the guardian should give her a voice. What I find less to my liking is the Guardian’s description of this politician as “THE UK’S FIRST GREEN MP”. Lucas is, in fact, the UK’s ONLY Green MP. So why would an allegedly objective news source describe her as the former, while omitting the latter?


David Bratzer says

Hmm, I wouldn’t read too much into this particular example, although I agree there is bias in the media at times. Often the headline / byline introducing an author can be negotiated. Her short essay is actually part of a series of blog posts. The Guardian has given her a weekly blog in the environmental section of their web site. Judging from the comments section her posts appear popular, so it wouldn’t make sense for her to provide free content under a headline with negative connotations (ie. one that describes her as the UK’s only Green MP).

— March 12, 2011

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