These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward conservative 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 conservative causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Right Bias sources.
- Overall, we rate Influence Watch Right Biased based on the left-leaning sources they more frequently profile, as well as the use of loaded words such as “extremist” to describe liberal policy. We also rate them High for factual reporting due to proper sourcing and a clean fact check record.
Factual Reporting: HIGH
World Press Freedom Rank: USA 45/180
Founded in 2016, Influence Watch is a project of the conservative think tank, Capital Research Center. According to their about page “Capital Research Center conceived of this project after identifying a need for more fact-based, accurate descriptions of all of the various influencers of public policy issues.” In simpler terms, Influence Watch is attempting to be the right-leaning counter, to the left-leaning Sourcewatch, which profiles how and where think tanks, organizations, and media are funded.
Funded By / Ownership
Influence Watch is owned by the Capital Research Center, which in turn is funded through donations. Some of their top donors are Exxon-Mobil, Koch Industries, and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. “CRC’s president is Scott Walter, who took office in 2016. A philanthropic consultant and former editor of publications released by the Philanthropy Roundtable and American Enterprise Institute.” Influence Watch has also been directly funded by the Bradley Foundation and the John William Pope Foundation. The common theme among all donors is conservative political affiliation and ties to the fossil fuel industry.
Analysis / Bias
In review, Influence Watch profiles non-profits, for-profits, labor unions and groups, detailing their funding and political affiliation. Where Sourcewatch tends to profile right-leaning organizations, Influence Watch profiles more left-leaning organizations. Influence Watch also profiles activist groups such as Black Lives Matter and ANTIFA, which they describe as “extreme left and violent.” The sourcing used for the ANTIFA profile comes from credible sources such as The Economist and The Atlantic. Influence Watch also profiles movements such as the Fight for $15 (Minimum Wage), which they portray with a negative tone, calling the idea a “radical policy.” Influence Watch also profiles numerous organizations that are concerned with climate change. In their profile of 350.org, which is an environmental group that opposes new oil, gas, and coal exploration, they label them “extreme left-wing policy.”
In general, Influence Watch tends to use strongly loaded words to describe the organizations they are profiling, often labeling them as extremists. However, as biased as their words may be, the information is properly sourced and while they may bring attention to climate change activists, they do not state denial of global warming.
Failed Fact Checks
Overall, we rate Influence Watch Right Biased based on the left-leaning sources they more frequently profile, as well as use of loaded words such as “extremist” to describe liberal policy. We also rate them High for factual reporting due to proper sourcing and a clean fact check record. (D. Van Zandt 1/17/2019)
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