The end result is a very dynamic interface that promotes discussion and interaction from all sides of the political spectrum.
San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) October 29, 2008
Today Skewz.com, the first user-driven political media aggregation site for exposing media bias, launched a new online tool that gives users the power to know the political bias of the websites they are visiting on the Internet. Like Digg.com, Del.icio.us, and Reddit, Skewz compiles all the news in one place, but Skewz is completely specialized in political coverage.
The tool, called the Skewz Media Bias Indicator, uses data collected through user feedback on the Skewz.com website to rate Internet news sites in terms of degree of liberal or conservative bias. It sits in the corner of the user's web browser and shows how that site leans politically overall and also reports on how that site covers specific political "hot topics" from abortion to the Iraq war.
"Just as people go to the Internet today to see how products and services they are thinking of purchasing are rated by others, Skewz lets users see ratings on political news sites. It's empowering the user to know the perceived politics of the sites they are visiting," says Vipul Vyas, founder of Skewz.com.
In addition, The Skewz Media Bias Indicator also lets users submit specific articles they come across on the web, and rate them in terms of liberal or conservative bias. These submitted stories are posted to the skewz.com site where members of the Skewz community can also rate these stories. With this added capability, users can "call out" or flag bias they find on the Internet and see if other members of the Skewz community have the same reaction in terms of perceived bias. These submissions are used to enhance the underlying body of data used by the Bias Indicator.
"While other sites exist for exposing and rating media bias, Skewz is the only one that is driven by users, not just a mathematical formulation," says Vyas. "The end result is a very dynamic interface that promotes discussion and interaction from all sides of the political spectrum."
Some of the key features of the Indicator are listed below:
- The Indicator sits in the lower right hand corner of the user's browser and shows the bias of the site currently being viewed. The Indicator can be downloaded at: http://www.skewz.com/widget/main . Currently, the Indicator is only available for the Mozilla Firefox browser. Other versions of the Indicator will be released in the coming weeks that support others browsers.
- The Indicator enables users to expose new examples of media bias by easily allowing users to submit stories they run across on the Internet and rate these stories in terms of liberal or conservative bias.
- The tool enables users to "drill down" on how certain sites or publications cover specific topics from Abortion to Gay Rights in terms of liberal or conservative bias as well. The tool is able to do this by leveraging the massive database of media bias entries that already exists on the skewz.com website.
These features are just the beginning, according to Skewz co-founder Vipul Vyas. "Expect to see the ability to see a rating regarding the quality of journalism for a specific article along with its perceived bias in the coming weeks. In fact, you'll be able to see how liberals and conservatives regard certain sites and understand how accurate sites are perceived to be in their reporting." he says.
"Media bias no doubt exists on both sides of the political divide," says Vyas. "By getting exposed to all sides of the story, users can become more educated on the varied perspectives on news events. Sites from of all political persuasions have interesting and valuable content to offer. Knowing their 'angle' just helps in better understanding the information presented."
MEDIA: Please visit http://www.skewz.com for more information. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to participate in the Skewz blog roll or widget program.
Skewz.com site is a collection is a social networking and news aggregation site where Skewz.com community members submit and rate stories in terms of political bias. The wealth of information from the Skewz.com site is fed to the Indicator to inform users of the likely bias of the sites they are visiting.
Originally founded to provide a forum for intelligent political debate free from strong-armed political persuasion and super charged emotional rhetoric, skewz.com has grown into a unique and integrated site that provides news and commentary from both sides of the political divide in a quantified, intuitive, and easy to read format.. Users can see a range of stories covering a given topic from both a liberal and conservative perspective. The site is now able to aggregate the data, analyze it, and use it to develop a new service that helps readers gain a better understanding about how people use and interpret the mainstream political media and blogsphere in the US.
Registered users can rate anything on the Internet in terms of its political bias whether that's liberal or conservative. Users can also submit and comment on political news from media sources (articles, videos, picture, editorials, etc.) or blogs and rate those submissions in terms of political bias.
Skewz users are evenly distributed between left and right with 36% on the left and 41% on the right and 23% center/undecided.