I’ve been a regular reader of the Huffington Post ever since it made its debut in 2005. It’s always had a liberal bent to it, which was fine with me. Along with the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times, it was one of my primary news sources.
The Huffington Post took a very strong, and very public, anti-Trump stance during the election, which was also fine with me. Originally, the Post decided to carry stories about Trump in its Entertainment section, calling his campaign a “sideshow”. But as him campaign began to gain traction, the editors decided to include Trump and his campaign as part of its political coverage.
It also took the bold move of adding the following statement to the end of any story that dealt with Trump:
Note to our readers: Donald Trump is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist, birther and bully who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.
I had no problem with the Post taking such a strong position; the editors were very upfront about it, so you knew what you were getting when you read its stories. When ever I felt the need to get my confirmation bias fix, I knew I could count on the Post to have an article or two highlighting the latest Trump fiasco.
I also believed that the Post was not involved in creating fake news stories during the election cycle, it was simply putting its liberal view on the campaign. To me, there’s a significant difference between outright lying versus offering your opinion when trying to influence your readers. Making up stories but promoting them as if they are factual is crossing a line, and I have no respect for web sites that do so.
But as much I’ve enjoyed reading the Huffington Post, I’ve decided it’s time to take a break.
The editors did remove the disclaimer at the end of any story dealing with Trump the day after the election. According to Huffpost’s Washington Bureau Chief Ryan Grim, “the thinking is that he’s now president and we’re going to start with a clean slate. If he governs in a racist, misogynistic way, we reserve the right to add it back on. This would be giving respect to the office of the presidency which Trump and his backers never did.”
While my opinion of Trump has not changed, I have to admit I was getting tired of the still numerous anti-Trump stories that are posted on its site, which seems inconsistent with their desire to “respect the office of the presidency”.
I’ve deleted the app from my phone, and in its place I’ve added the philly.com app. Along with the WSJ and NYT, this app will enable me to keep up not only with national and global news, but with the local news as well. I am sure there will still be a bias in the stories that I will be reading, but I hope such a bias will not be the overriding approach to how the news is reported.
To me, it was time to move on, and I think the Huffington Post should do the same.