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Fake News vs. Real News: Using Biased Sources

What are Biased or Pro & Con Sources?

The authors of pro & con or biased articles, books, or other sources have a specific bias and are trying to persuade the reader of a specific point of view in contrast to most academic articles that typically focus on topics in an objective manner that is meant to inform the reader.

Here are some characteristics of persuasive or biased articles:

  • Generally, the authors do not state their agenda or tell the reader if they are for or against the topic. The reader has to determine if it is objective or persuasive.
  • The authors of these opinion or pro & con articles, books, or other resources may or may not have done research on the topic. The only way to tell is if the authors list the sources used for their research.
  • If there is a list of sources used available, they are generally only those that support the agenda or argument of the author and do include those that support a different point of view.

When to Use Them

Opinion or pro & con articles, books, or other resources with bias are ideal to use in argumentative papers or presentations.

They can also be used for informative research assignments, but you have to be more careful so as not to produce an unintentionally biased paper or presentation that is meant to be objective.

Most importantly, you have to be able to recognize if your source is biased and if it is appropriate for your assignment. If you aren't sure, ask!

Opinion, Pro & Con Databases

This database is the best for opinion or pro & con topics. The good news is that it is clearly stated whether the articles are for or against the topic so you know going in what the bias is.