These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward liberal causes through story selection and/or political affiliation. They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports and omit reporting of information that may damage liberal causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Left Bias sources.
- Overall, we rate AlterNet far-Left Biased based on story selection and wording that always favors the left. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to a failed fact check as well as the promotion of pseudoscience.
Factual Reporting: MIXED
World Press Freedom Rank: USA 45/180
AlterNet is a liberal activist news service and is a project of the non-profit Independent Media Institute that Launched in 1998. According to their about page “AlterNet has developed a unique model of journalism to confront the failures of corporate media, as well as the vitriol and disinformation of right-wing media, especially “hate talk” media.” The current editor is Roxanne Cooper.
In 2018, AlterNet was bought by the owners of the left-leaning Raw Story under the newly created company AlterNet Media. According to John Byrne, who is one of the owners of Raw Story, “AlterNet will continue to carry content from the Independent Media Institute, its prior owner.” According to Fairness.com the “Independent Media Institute has served the public through the creation and distribution of content about political and social issues.”
Funded by / Ownership
AlterNet is owned by the owners of Raw Story under the name AlterNet Media. The website is funded through online advertising.
Analysis / Bias
In review, AlterNet publishes news with a far-left bias through story selection and the use of emotionally loaded words such as these: Trump goes off in an all-caps New Year’s Eve Twitter meltdown: ‘MEXICO IS PAYING FOR THE WALL’ and The F Word: The Craven Right Wing Is Now Smearing Teenage School Shooting Survivors. The website also features a separate news category that focuses on negative reports about Donald Trump. When it comes to sourcing, AlterNet typically uses known mainstream sources such as the New York Daily News and NBC News.
AlterNet also frequently delves into pseudoscience with the promotion of anti-GMO propaganda, which is not consistent with the consensus of science. AlterNet has consistently reported on the connection between cell phones and cancer, which is misleading as there is not a scientific consensus on whether radiation for cell phones causes cancer or not.
In general, AlterNet consistently publishes pro-Left news stories and those that denigrate the right.
Failed Fact Checks
- AlterNet, a left-leaning news website, claims the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board currently does not have any female members. – False
Overall, we rate AlterNet far-Left Biased based on story selection and wording that always favors the left. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to a failed fact check as well as the promotion of pseudoscience. (5/13/2016) Updated (D. Van Zandt 2/14/2021)