For my news website I chose rightwingnews.com. The site was created in 2001 and was last updated today, March 7, 2011. The audience is clearly supposed to be anybody with a conservative viewpoint, judging by the name of the site. The titles of the news stories covered on this website show an obvious slant to the conservative side of possible viewers. There are exaggerated headlines and several negative comments about Obama on the home page. There are links running down the left and right side of the centered “news stories.” Most of the links have the name news or report in them, but after clicking on several of them, it seems like most link you to another site like this, with a purely conservative slant.
Under the “credits” part of the site, design credit is given to Danny Carlton, and scripting credit is given to both Danny Carlton and Nicole Baker. However, the creator of the website is John Hawkins. John Hawkins is a regular contributor to blogs like Townhall.com and is the main voice behind RightWingNews.com. There are several ways to interact on the website including being able to comment of every news story on the site, and links to other blogs and authors that you can contact through e-mail. The sight makes clear its affiliations with other right-wing blogs but makes no effort to explain where there information comes from in each particular story post. Most of the information is opinion based. The domain name and the layout of the site tell me that it was professionally built. There is no offline version of the site and no links to unbiased outside sources.
The site is professional looking, and as far as I can tell, there are no outstanding errors in grammar, spelling, or punctuation. The writing style, shortsighted and ignorant, is very appropriate for the topics they cover on the site. The format is very easy to use and navigation is clear and simple. Because this site was professionally built for rightwingnews.com, all the links and headings are meaningful and all work properly. There are relatively few pictures on the site and no sounds. There are pictures of contributors next to the material they have added, and the site is very clean and professional. Other than my problem with the actual content of the site, I can find nothing wrong with any section of the site from a functionality standpoint. Everything works as it should and things are presented in a clear and easy-to-use style. I found this site by typing “biased news” into Google. Looking at the source, it becomes clear that through the use of meta tags, any search of things related to terrorism like “9/11” or Osama Bin Laden, even words like torture and Rumsfeld will bring this site up in the search results. They are clearly aiming for a public that wants to hear about the danger we are in as a nation.
As a functioning website, setting aside the actual content of the page, RightWingNews.com is a very good example of how to set up an easily understandable “news” page. All the links make sense where they are and other than a little bit of clutter on the home page, the site looks as professional as any privately run news/blog. There is a lack of credibility in the sources of the news stories and I could not find further information on John Hawkins’ credentials, but there is no effort made to mask the source of the commentary on the “news” topics. I would not trust anything I read on this site as anything more than biased commentary on general facts , but the site is a decent model for a news oriented blog.