You come to political sites like RedState for politics, but once your political scratch has been itched and your need for updates has been satiated, you head to an apolitical site to get away for a while and yet, somehow, you feel like you’re reading about politics more than ever.
It’s because you are and a new study has the data to prove it.
According to Niemanlab.org, a comprehensive study done between three countries (US, Netherlands, and Poland) was undertaken to find out just how many times people run into politics during the course of their online browsing. They collected both testimonials from people as well as their browser histories and judged how the people were affected by running into politics over time. Moreover, they established the existence of political information on non-news sites in-depth by creating a “multi-lingual classifier” that detected political content on political and non-political sites.
“Out of every 10 visits to political content, 3.4 come from news and 6.6 from non-news sites,” according to the researchers.
The data suggested that people only spend 3.4 percent of their time browsing political sites and four percent covering their total online news consumption. When they did hit these sites up, what they usually read was something other than politics. It’s an interesting data point, but it gets more interesting.
As Niemanlab goes on to report, it’s non-news sites that reign supreme when it comes to absorbed political content:
So, where did they get their political information? From entertainment, shopping sites, celebrity gossip pages — all the things that people prefer in comparison to news and public affairs. These non-news sites emerged as the dominant source of political information simply by virtue of the volume of activity there compared with the little time spent on news sites.
“Even though politics in these kinds of [non-news] sites comprised only 1.6% of all visits,” the authors write, “the aggregate popularity of webmail, entertainment, shopping sites, or celebrity gossip means that an average citizen encounters most political content outside news [our emphasis added]. People, especially Americans and especially those with low political interest…encounter politics more frequently outside news outlets than within.”
This consumption of political news is affecting people’s perception of politics according to research:
Just as significantly, the researchers found that the effects of encountering political information — for example, the impact on people’s intentions to participate in politics or their propensity to believe misinformation — were “astonishingly similar” between news and non-news sites.
Stopping to think about the implications of this, you can see how this would be a major problem for apolitical of America…or at least the people who think they’re apolitical.
Let’s say you’re a woman in her early 20s. You log onto the web in order to check out the latest fashion article or celebrity interview. According to this, the article will likely venture into current event territory where the author’s bias will leak through whether intentionally or not. Mainstream narratives are reinforced and without knowing it, this young woman has developed a political position.
Certain words such as “transphobic” or “climate change denial” find their way into articles all the time. “Women’s rights” are often used in tandem with news about abortion from mainstream sources. This language, as well as all the politically correct language used by mainstream sources, gets soaked into the mind of the woman. This becomes a perspective on a given issue and a belief in a narrative is formed.
The young woman who would never think to visit a site like Mother Jones or Vox nevertheless has the beliefs that these sites express. If asked about it, they might sound no different from an MSNBC talking head without even knowing it.
Our mainstream media is so soaked with leftism and most people don’t even realize it. They bathe in the narratives constantly and form beliefs. Inevitably, when politics comes up, they’ll say they “aren’t political” but sure seem to have plenty of opinions about political matters.
This study really highlights just how easy it is for the left to infect their mind viruses, and further proof that conservatives are doing themselves no favors by ignoring the culture.