Fox News Is Bad For You As Proven By Science

If you say so…

Guys, we’ve always known that Fox News is the worst, and many of us have lost family and friends to that toxic brand (full disclosure: Jen is a Twitter buddy) but it’s always been anecdotal: a father here, a brother there, Facebook Rage Uncles everywhere, amirite?

Anyway thanks to a new study we now have actual evidence that this is a real phenom!


Partisan media impacts voting behavior, yet what changes in viewers’ beliefs or attitudes may underlie these impacts is poorly understood. We recruited a sample of regular Fox News viewers using data on actual TV viewership from a media company, and incentivized them to watch CNN instead for a month using real-time viewership quizzes. Despite regular Fox viewers being largely strong partisans, we found manifold effects of changing the slant of their media diets on their factual beliefs, attitudes, perceptions of issues’ importance, and overall political views. We show that these effects stem in part from a bias we call partisan coverage filtering, wherein partisan outlets selectively report information, leading viewers to learn a biased set of facts. Consistent with this, treated participants concluded that Fox concealed negative information about President Trump. Partisan media does not only present its side an electoral advantage—it may present a challenge for democratic accountability.

Researchers gathered a sample of regular Fox viewers, and paid a subset of them to watch CNN instead (the rest were the control group). After a month, the people paid to swap Fox out for CNN changed their views. So it’s kinda like detox!

Look, we’re not saying that you need to pay your Facebook Rage Uncles to stop watching Fox, we’re just saying that we now have empirical evidence to back up our anecdotal evidence.

In a step in the right direction, DirectTV has stopped carrying OAN.

Related: the great and snarky Oliver Willis points us to a piece on his blog on how to defeat Fox News.

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1 Response to Fox News Is Bad For You As Proven By Science

  1. spotthedog says:

    Who needs Focks when you can see and hear Mic “peaceful transition” Mulvaney on CBS.


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