It has come to my attention that there is a concern that Fox News may not be what they claim. I have decided to perform a simple test to determine if this allegation is true.
We will test the reporting of Fox News regarding the presidential candidates to determine. At this time, there are four remaining candidates, so we will use these four as our test.
For this test, I accept common definitions of their slogan "fair and balanced"
Fair: free from favoritism or self-interest or bias or deception
Balanced: being in a state of proper balance or equilibrium
To be fair, Fox must show similar discretion for each of the candidates. For example, if they choose to write about the platform of a candidate, they should write similar articles for other candidates. Or if they choose to compare candidates, each candidate should receive a similar portion of the article.
To be balanced, Fox must show a similar volume on each of the candidates. A similar volume of content on all candidates is balanced; while a disproportionate volume between candidates is not balanced.
To test, visit fox news website and do a search for each candidate name in quotes.
Hillary Clinton: 2360 results. For the first ten listings, one of the articles had the name(s) of a different candidate (Obama) in the title.
Barack Obama: 2430 results. For the first ten listings, one of the articles had the name(s) of a different candidate (Clinton) in the title.
John McCain: 2240 results. For the first ten listings, none of the results had the name(s) of different candidates in the title.
Ron Paul: 715 results. For the first ten listings, five of the results had the name(s) of different candidates (McCain, Clinton, and Obama) in the title.
The fairness test. We see that for the first ten listings, Clinton, Obama, and McCain only have a single result with a title that references a competing candidate. Ron Paul's results differ greatly in that HALF of the listings reference a competing candidate in the title. In fact, one listing references two other candidates in the title.
--result: FAIL. Fox News did not provide fair reporting.
The balanced test. We see that Clinton, Obama, and McCain all received a result volume within 10% of each other. This would be considered a balanced volume. However, Ron Paul's volume is less than one third the volume of the other candidates.
--result: FAIL. Fox News did not provide balanced reporting.
Lets take a look at another common definition.
Fraud: Fraud is economic crime involving deceit, trickery or false pretences, by which someone gains unlawfully. An actual fraud is motivated by the desire to cause harm by deceiving someone else, while a constructive fraud is a profit made from a relation of trust. Synonyms: Swindle, deceit, double-dealing, cheat, and bluff.
Fox news claims themselves to be 'fair and balanced.' However, as we have just observed, Fox does not provide fair OR balanced reporting, therefore it DOES meet the definition of fraud.
Resolving the discrepancy:
Based on the evidence thus far, Fox News has two options to resolve this issue.
1) BE fair and balanced. It is a perfectly reasonable request. One should be what one claims to be.
2) CHANGE the slogan. By using the 'fair and balanced' slogan, Fox News is defrauding its viewers. One possible slogan: Fox News: We defraud our viewers