AMAC Exclusive – By Aaron Flanigan
Microsoft—one of the world’s most successful and widely-used tech companies—is risking its reputation with its news aggregator, MSN (short for Microsoft Network), in a way that could send it into a woke descent similar to corporations like Bud Light, Disney, and Target.
While news aggregators are supposed to focus on journalism rather than ideological activism, MSN seems to have assembled a news operation comprised of editors and AI software that practices the opposite of journalism, which is preventing readers from accessing the vast array of political, social, and cultural views embedded within American culture.
Although many media outlets have experienced significant levels of pushback in recent years over their blatant liberal bias, news aggregation platforms like Pocket, Yahoo! News and MSN have generally received less attention. But as more and more Americans rely on these curators as their primary sources of information, it is becoming increasingly clear that supposedly neutral aggregation sites—some of which use artificial intelligence to aggregate stories from across the web—are nothing more than another channel for Big Tech and media companies to impose their far-left values on the American people.
Microsoft’s MSN is increasingly falling into this category. MSN’s aggregation service is built into many Windows computers, as well as Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, and its web browser, Edge.
According to its website, MSN provides “personalized content that informs and inspires,” sorted by algorithms that “comb through hundreds of thousands of pieces of content.” The platform also relies on “human oversight” to “ensure that the content we show aligns with our values.” Boasting more than half a billion monthly readers, MSN strives to be “a critical part of our social fabric” that “gives people access to trustworthy content.”
The platform, however, has a notable tendency to promote transparently left-wing narratives that call its supposed trustworthiness into question.
After several weeks of monitoring, AMAC Newsline has noticed the MSN website promoting a Vox piece insisting America has a “gun problem,” an Atlantic essay claiming that Donald Trump’s presidential campaign could cause a “war” on blue-leaning states, and an article from The Hill suggesting that Donald Trump is “duping” voters by touting his increasing political support from African Americans.
MSN has also aggressively boosted the left-wing media’s new favorite narrative that a second Trump term would spiral America into a dictatorship. Within the span of just a few days, the platform has promoted a story from USA Today asserting Trump is “an unprecedented danger to democracy,” MSNBC coverage stating that Trump poses a “threat” of “authoritarian government,” a Washington Post analysis warning of “a looming Trump dictatorship,” a Mediaite article puffing up Mitt Romney’s claim that a second Trump term is a “dangerous course to go down,” and a State of the Union piece validating Liz Cheney’s statement that the Republican Party is on track for an “existential crisis” in 2024. The list goes on.
Meanwhile, the platform has also promoted content lamenting the “gender gap” in STEM fields, a piece plugging a “Latinx geologist” who is “disrupting stereotypes of who can be a scientist,” and a guide detailing COVID-19 masking and vaccine protocols.
Though MSN might claim that it has maintained some semblance of political balance (it sometimes curates content from platforms Fox News and Newsweek), its peddling of left-wing content and narratives far outweighs any credence it may give to right-of-center views—calling into question the platform’s commitment to providing “trustworthy content.”
Of course, MSN is far from the only online news curator known for pumping up left-wing content. Pocket, a news aggregator managed by Mozilla, which makes the popular Firefox web browser, boasts more than 10 million active users and circulates only the most culturally and politically charged left-wing hit pieces.
As this left-wing bias becomes more obvious, news aggregation sites like MSN may soon find themselves facing the same collapse in trust now befalling traditional media outlets such as CNN, as well as corporations that have toed the line of left-wing extremism.
This year, several American companies have already seen what can happen when they embrace the creeds of wokeism with the expectation that consumers won’t notice. Bud Light, Target, Disney, and several other major companies have all suffered massive blows to their public image and revenue after they openly promoted far-left social politics.
Though many liberal corporate actors often go out of their way to ignore it, the fact remains that Americans are paying attention—and when their values are under assault, they will fight back and ensure that woke companies pay the price.
If Microsoft wants to avoid such backlash, perhaps it should think about something truly revolutionary: hiring conservative editors and other staff who might have a different view of the world and would present a far broader scope of content to MSN users—especially by promoting articles from hard-hitting and respected conservative publications like The Federalist, The Daily Caller, The Daily Wire, Washington Examiner, or Breitbart.
But that would mean making at least a few of MSN’s current parochially minded editors uncomfortable with their own narrow mindset and impoverished understanding of what journalism is all about in the first place.
Aaron Flanigan is the pen name of a writer in Washington, D.C.