Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center has previously attacked the Google News Initiative by tarring all the recipients of its grants as irredeemably liberal, even though several recipients were actually mainstream operations and the vast majority of the projects being funded are not ideologically driven. Now the MRC is taking another shot now that it has an unambiguously liberal target to bash.
Alexander Hall complained in a Feb. 11 post that the Young Turks -- which he branded as a "far-left media outlet" -- "launched a new project to train a new generation of liberals to dominate local media -- all funded by Big Tech giant YouTube and its owner, Google" as a part of the News Initiative. After repeating a Young Turks statement that its educational program to teach people how to use digital media to report on local issues, TYT Academy, is not designed to push any particular viewpoint, Hall huffed: "Based on The Young Turks’ track record as an outlet, that statement may be difficult for some to believe."
Hall seems to be assuming that the Young Turks operate the way programs that train conservative journalists, where viewpoint bias is demanded and you're branded a "Benedict Arnold" if you exercise editorial independence.
Hall then rehashed some of the MRC's previous lame hit jobs on Google. First, he claimed, "Google has a history of leaning to the far-left. Google fired engineer James Damore in 2017 after he wrote a memo criticizing political correctness and identity politics." As we documented, Damore's memo claimed that that women were psychologically and biologically unsuited to work as engineers and cited as a source the website Quillette, which dabbles in "alleged links between genetics and IQ, and Damore himself went on far-right and white nationalist talks shows and podcasts to promote his memo.
Hall also name-checked Google-hating professor Robert Epstein, who "testified at a state hearing in July of 2019 that Google had helped influence no less than 2.6 million votes in favor of Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election." As we also documented, Epstein's conclusions were based on a tiny pool of 21 undecided voters and didn't explain how he determined whether a given website exhibited "pro-Hillary bias."
True to form, Hall censored the inconvenient facts from the examples he cited, instead choosing to rant that "With Google/YouTube’s generous funding, this project alone may have power to swing future elections." He then repeated the two tracks the educational series would take: “Journalism tactics and responsibilities” and “Best practices for online video production.”
Oooh, the bias!