The Media Research Center (MRC) is a conservative media watchdog organization that was established in 1987 to "bring political balance to the media." Its founder, Brent Bozell III, is a syndicated author, former president of the National Conservative Political Action Committee, and served as Pat Buchanan's financial director during the 1992 presidential campaign. MRC is known for its special studies, its newsletters MediaWatch, MediaNomics and Notable Quotables, and its books such as That's the Way It Isn't: A Reference Guide to Media Bias. The web site provides another means to relay this information. Anyone looking for the conservative viewpoint on a current issue will benefit from visiting this site.
From the main page one may search the site, link directly to selected studies, or use buttons to enter the News Division, Parents Television Council, Entertainment Division, Free Market Project, Election'96 Reality Check, MRC Bookstore, "What's New," visit a chat room, learn about the MRC, join or contact MRC. Each of these areas provides information about the mission, services, projects, and products of the MRC.
The News Division seeks evidence of liberal bias in newspapers, news magazines, and news programs. Findings are reported in MediaWatch, a monthly newsletter, and made available on the Web. Special reports, such as The Media and Whitewater, are available as well. Improved values-driven television programming is the goal of the Parents Television Council. An outcome of this special project of the MRC is a comprehensive guide to the content of prime time television programs, which may be purchased through this site. The Entertainment Division provides data on the best and worst prime time television shows and special reports such as Religion and Televison. MediaNomics, a monthly product of the Free Market Project (FMP), reports how business and economic issues are covered by the media. FMP Special reports will be added soon. The Election `96 Reality Check reports liberal bias in campaign reporting. This is a $2.8 million effort aimed at informing the public. A new feature of the site provides recent writings of various columnists from outside the beltway.
Alternatively, one may "explore the new conservative world" through the Town Hall. Links are provided to information from a subject approach of various issues: Budget and Taxation; Education; Crime and Law; Economic and Political Theory; Foreign Policy; Health and Welfare; Environment, Energy, Science; Family, Culture, Community; Governing; National Security; Regulations and Infrastructure; or Trade and Commerce. Information from over twenty grass roots organizations like Americans for Tax Reform and Empower America is available from the Town Hall. When using the site's search engine, results may be limited to resources from any or all of these organizations.
MRC Web site is well organized and easy to maneuver. A user-firendly search engine covers the entire site. Buttons from the Home Page link to the various areas of the MRC site and mapped banners provide easy navigation back to other areas. Also an option, is a map of the entire site, that has the look of the Washington, D.C. Metro map, which allows the user to see at a glance what is available and choose the appropriate stop. One may opt to use the text-only version of the site.
The Media Research Center web page has its roots in a well respected organization, provides original information, includes links to other selected conservative sites, and continues to grow. This, combined with its uncluttered layout and easy navigation, makes it a resource to be remembered when looking for the conservative side of an issue.
Coordinator, Government Information & Law
Western Kentucky University Libraries
Bowling Green, KY 42101
Reviewed September 28, 1996