What do balance and bias mean?

When we are reading or watching the news we need to be critical of what we are seeing to make sure it is accurate.

Sometimes when the news is presented to us it is not trying to inform us but to persuade us of a certain way of thinking about an issue.

Here are some important words for us to think about:

Key words

  • Balance – this is when the different views on an issue are presented in a fair and equal way. For example, different political parties having an equal chance to get their point across. The journalist takes a neutral position – in other words they don’t try to persuade you one way or the other.
  • Bias – when a story is only presented from one viewpoint it could be described as biased. The person reporting is trying to persuade you of their view on the issue and they won’t always show the other side of the story.
  • Exaggeration – most of us exaggerate sometimes! In news this means that the facts of a story are stretched so they seem bigger or more important than they actually are.