Gather + assess relevant info – practice

Overview

It’s important to note that reputable news sources will contain both facts and opinions. To practice distinguishing between the two, read a news report and an opinion piece on the same topic.

Instructions

Recommended length or post is 50-100 words.

Step 1: Identify a news report and opinion piece on the same topic

For example: here is a news report on a New York City hearing on e-cigarettes, which you might read alongside the Op-Ed “The Case for Tolerating E-Cigarettes.” You can conduct this same experiment with any topic that interests you: contrast the reporting on the front page on a big news event like with a piece in the Opinion pages that takes on the same topic.

You may select any topic that interests you. 

Step 2: Read both pieces and annotate 

Who’s viewpoint is the piece from? Count the number of corporate and government sources versus the number of progressive, public interest, female and minority voices. Highlight the opinions in one color and the facts in another. 

Step 3: Reflect

What are the differences? What is the fact/opinion ratio in the news piece? Does the article make you feel angry about the subject?

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