Harvard University’s Library has published a student guide targeting reputable conservative news outlets as fake news, while pushing liberal news outlets such as the Daily Kos as being acceptable and credible.
The new research guide,“Fake News, Misinformation, and Propaganda,” has a tool designed to help students avoid fake news outlets that are “False, Misleading, Clickbait-y, and Satirical “News” sources.
Several reputable conservative news outlets are included on this list such as Newsmax, The Washington Examiner (our brother publication), Washington Free Beacon, and Independent Journal Review, while discredited liberal news outlets such as Vox, Buzzfeed, and Salon are conveniently left off the list. In a quick search of all the names on the list, the word “conservative” appears five times more often than the word “liberal”
The guide also includes labels for why an outlet was added to the list, but blatantly favors liberal outlets with better labels. For example, The Washington Examiner is described as “political” and “unreliable,” while Daily Kos is described as “political” and “clickbait,” but “credible.” Liberal outlets are also favored among the sites recommended for rating media accuracy, with both Politifact and Washington Post Fact Checker making the list.
Students are also encouraged to download a browser extension designed to help detect fake news sources by flagging certain sites as unreliable. A quick check of this browser extension also exhibited clear liberal bias by flagging reputable outlets such as the Drudge Report and The Daily Signal as being potentially unreliable.
According to the library, the list was written by Melissa Zimdars, a liberal professor of journalism at Merrimack College. Zimdars was openly critical of Mike Pence and Donald Trump during the 2016 Presidential Election, and conveniently left any news outlet that colluded with the DNC or Clinton campaign to provide favorable coverage for Hillary Clinton during the 2016 Democratic primary.