Some time ago I discovered that I didn't like reading "the news" very much. Perhaps this resulted from reading too many British newspapers, which don't try very hard to disguise their angle on a story. Some are pro-monarchy, some are pro-business, some are pro-Left, some are pro-Right. You choose the paper that matches your bias.
In the United States, we still pretend to be unbiased. I'm not sure why. I'll occasionally get comments on this blog accusing me of bias in favor of Apple, against Microsoft, or whatever. Of course they're right. I make no attempt to hide it. I find blogs refreshing precisely because, as a general rule, they make no attempt to mask bias. This is what I want: Transparency, not some purportedly clinical examination of "news." I don't believe the latter is possible.
Take a look to the right. CNET clearly displays my bias, as it does for all of its outside bloggers. See the disclosure link? Now go to one of CNET's writers and bloggers' pages, that of Ian Fried, in this case: No disclosure page.
Not that CNET is alone in this. Head over to Tom Yager's blog at InfoWorld. No disclosure. Steve Gillmor over at eWeek? Nada.
Presumably this is because these writers aren't biased? That they have miraculously managed to live on this planet for a few decades as a tabula rosa, writing the world as it sees itself? Let me pause while I snicker into my sleeve.
We don't read these excellent writers because they lack bias. We read them precisely because of their biases. It's the commentary that makes "news" interesting, and that commentary is always heavily flavored by bias.… Read more