Fox News uses the word ‘hate’ far more often than MSNBC or CNN
YouTube/Fox News/The Conversation

This article originally appeared on 09.30.20

`Fox News is up to five times more likely to use the word "hate" in its programming than its main competitors, according to our new study of how cable news channels use language.

Fox particularly uses the term when explaining opposition to Donald Trump. His opponents are said to "hate" Trump, his values and his followers.

Our research, which ran from Jan. 1 to May 8, 2020, initially explored news of Trump's impeachment. Then came the coronavirus. As we sifted through hundreds of cable news transcripts over five months, we noticed consistent differences between the vocabulary used on Fox News and that of MSNBC.

While their news agendas were largely similar, the words they used to describe these newsworthy events diverged greatly.


Fox and hate

For our study, we analyzed 1,088 program transcripts from the two ideologically branded channels – right-wing Fox and left-wing MSNBC – between 6 p.m. and 10:59 p.m.

Because polarized media diets contribute to partisan conflict, our quantitative analysis identified terms indicating antipathy or resentment, such as "dislike," "despise," "can't stand" and "hate."

We expected to find that both of the strongly ideological networks made use of such words, perhaps in different ways. Instead, we found that Fox used antipathy words five times more often than MSNBC. "Hate" really stood out: It appeared 647 times on Fox, compared to 118 on MSNBC.

Fox usually pairs certain words alongside "hate." The most notable was "they" – as in, "they hate." Fox used this phrase 101 times between January and May. MSNBC used it just five times.

To put these findings in historic context, we then used the GDELT Television database to search for occurrences of the phrase "they hate" on both networks going back to 2009. We included CNN for an additional comparison.

We found Fox's usage of "they hate" has increased over time, with a clear spike around the polarizing 2016 Trump-Clinton election. But Fox's use of "hate" really took off when Trump's presidency began. Beginning in January 2017, the mean usage of "they hate" on the network doubled.

Fox says 'they hate' way more than CNN or MSNBC

Since 2011 all three major cable news channels used the phrase "they hate" in their evening newscasts (between 6 and 11 p.m.). But starting with the 2016 Clinton-Trump race, FOX News has done so far more often than CNN and MSNBC.

The Conversation, CC-BY-ND Source: Te

'Us' versus 'them'

So who is doing all this hating – and why – according to Fox News?

Mainly, it's Democrats, liberals, political elites and the media. Though these groups do not actually have the same interests, ideology or job description, our analysis finds Fox lumps them together as the "they" in "they hate."

When Fox News anchors say "they hate..."

Quantitative analysis shows Fox News' used the phrase "they hate" frequently on its evening programing between January and May 2020, most commonly referring to Democrats (29% of the time) or to a non-specific group like "political elites" (24% of the time). Many of these terms were used interchangeably, as if they were one group unified in their hatred.

Table: The Conversation CC-BY-ND Source: C. Knüpfer & R. Entman

As for the object of all this hatred, Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson and other Fox hosts most often name Trump. Anchors also identify their audience – "you," "Christians" and "us" – as the target of animosity. Only 13 instances of "they hate" also cited a reason. Examples included "they can't accept the fact that he won" or "because we voted for [Trump]."

Who's being hated, according to Fox News

Thirty-six percent of times that Fox News anchors said "they hate" between January and May 2020, Trump was the alleged target of that hatred. A smattering of other targets were also named ("you," "me," "Christians," etc.). Rarely did Fox anchors offer a reason for this animosity.

Table: The Conversation CC-BY-ND Source: C. Knüpfer & R. Entman

Citing liberal hate as a fact that needs no explanation serves to dismiss criticism of specific policies or events. It paints criticism or moral outrage directed at Trump as inherently irrational.

For loyal Fox viewers, these language patterns construct a coherent but potentially dangerous narrative about the world.

Our data show intensely partisan hosts like Hannity and Carlson are more likely than other Fox anchors to use "they hate" in this way. Nevertheless, the phrase permeates Fox's evening programming, uttered by hosts, interviewees and Republican sources, all painting Trump critics not as legitimate opponents but hateful enemies working in bad faith.

By repeatedly telling its viewers they are bound together as objects of the contempt of a powerful and hateful left-leaning "elite," Fox has constructed two imagined communities. On the one side: Trump along with good folks under siege. On the other: nefarious Democrats, liberals, the left and mainstream media.

Research confirms that repeated exposure to polarized media messages can lead news consumers to form firm opinions and can foster what's called an "in-group" identity. The us-versus-them mentality, in turn, deepens feelings of antipathy toward the perceived "out-group."

The Pew Research Center reports an increasing tendency, especially among Republicans, to view members of the other party as immoral and unpatriotic. Pew also finds Republicans trust Fox News more than any other media outlet.

Americans' divergent media sources – and specifically Fox's "hate"-filled rhetoric – aren't solely to blame here. Cable news is part of a larger picture of heightened polarization, intense partisanship and paralysis in Congress.

Sean Hannity portrays criticism of Donald Trump as hate-based.YouTube/Fox News/The Conversation

Good business

Leaning into intense partisanship has been good for Fox News, though. In summer 2020 it was the country's most watched network. But using hate to explain the news is a dangerous business plan when shared crises demand Americans' empathy, negotiation and compromise.

Fox's talk of hate undermines democratic values like tolerance and reduces Americans' trust of their fellow citizens.

This fraying of social ties helps explain America's failures in managing the pandemic – and bodes badly for its handling of what seems likely to be a chaotic, divisive presidential election. In pitting its viewers against the rest of the country, Fox News works against potential solutions to the the very crises it covers.


Curd Knüpfer is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Freie Universität Berlin.

Robert Mathew Entman is J.B. and M.C. Shapiro Professor Emeritus of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University.

This article first appeared on The Conversation. You can read it here.


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Often, parents of children with special needs struggle to find Halloween costumes that will accommodate medical equipment or provide a proper fit. And figuring out how to make one? Yikes.

There's good news; shopDisney has added new ensembles to their already impressive line of adaptive play costumes. And from 8/30 - 9/26, there's a 20% off sale for all costume and costume accessory orders of $75+ with code Spooky.

When looking for the right costume, kids with unique needs have a lot of extra factors to consider: wheelchair wheels get tangled up in too-long material, feeding tubes could get twisted the wrong way, and children with sensory processing disorders struggle with the wrong kind of fabric, seams, or tags. There are a lot of different obstacles that can come between a kid and the ability to wear the costume of their choice, which is why it's so awesome that more and more companies are recognizing the need for inclusive creations that make it easy for everyone to enjoy the magic of make-believe.

Created with inclusivity in mind, the adaptive line is designed to discreetly accommodate tubes or wires from the front or the back, with lots of stretch, extra length and roomier cut, and self-stick fabric closures to make getting dressed hassle-free. The online shop provides details on sizing and breaks down the magical elements of each outfit and accessory, taking the guesswork out of selecting the perfect costume for the whole family.

Your child will be able to defeat Emperor Zurg in comfort with the Buzz Lightyear costume featuring a discreet flap opening at the front for easy tube access, with self-stick fabric closure. There is also an opening at the rear for wheelchair-friendly wear, and longer-length inseams to accommodate seated guests. To infinity and beyond!

An added bonus: many of the costumes offer a coordinating wheelchair cover set to add a major boost of fun. Kids can give their ride a total makeover—all covers are made to fit standard size chairs with 24" wheels—to transform it into anything from The Mandalorian's Razor Crest ship to Cinderella's Coach. Some options even come equipped with sounds and lights!

From babies to adults and adaptive to the group, shopDisney's expansive variety of Halloween costumes and accessories are inclusive of all.

Don't forget about your furry companions! Everyone loves to see a costumed pet trotting around, regardless of the occasion. You can literally dress your four-legged friend to look like Sven from Frozen, which might not sound like something you need in your life but...you totally do. CUTENESS OVERLOAD.

This year has been tough for everyone, so when a child gets that look of unfettered joy that comes from finally getting to wear the costume of their dreams, it's extra rewarding. Don't wait until the last minute to start looking for the right ensemble!


*Upworthy may earn a portion of sales revenue from purchases made through affiliate links on our site.

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Photo courtesy of Macy's
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Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.


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Photo courtesy of Macy's

Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

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