Google News is a fascinating tool. After hearing on a BBC Podcast about the FBI arresting seven people for an alleged terrorist plot against the Sears Tower, I was curious (I visited it with Lizzie only a year back). Google News makes it easy to track down different versions of the same story. It’s striking the tone adopted by different news sources:
Chicago Sun-Times - Terror plot foiled.
Independent, UK - Plot ‘not all that it seems’.
Mail & Guardian, South Africa - ‘bigger than 9/11’.
Islam Online - Suspects not Muslims.
I read a lot of my news through Google’s portal these days, precisely in an attempt to get some balance (and even then I don’t know how well I actually do).
Incidentally, although this might seem like a contradiction from my previous statement, it’s also striking how samey the news is from sources with similar biases and backgrounds - I have begun to understand just how much inter-source plaigarism goes on, and how many sources rely on news wires.
As with many other things, it appears that when it comes to news, caveat emptor.