AOL News Boss Takes Sides in Wall Street Protest

A leading force in online journalism appears to be making a strong effort to be anything but fair and balanced.

Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief of AOL Huffington Post Media Group, has become a full-on supporter of the Occupy Wall Street protests — injecting her endorsement of the demonstrations into her media outlets’ coverage of the events in lower Manhattan.

The media baroness has been tweeting and re-tweeting up a storm in support of the Occupy Wall Street protesters, and she’s been taking shots at the Tea Party and Fox News in the process.

A spokesman for Huffington did not immediately return’s request for comment.

In her Oct. 2 weekly bylined roundup, published every Sunday on Huffington Post, Huffington wrote:

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“Meanwhile, the Occupy Wall Street protests intensified, a welcome reminder that, for angry Americans, the Tea Party is not the only option -- and that the energy for real change will definitely come from outside Washington. Keep your eye on Zuccotti Square.”

Huffington has linked out to a Tumblr blog, "We Are The 99 Percent," which features the life stories of Occupy Wall Street supporters, re-tweeting dozens of supportive posts, quotes and links.

She’s even gone so far as to promote a Financial Times article on the notorious hacker group Anonymous, which has been associated with the Occupy Wall Street protests and which is believed to have announced plans to take down the Stock Exchange on Monday, Oct. 10 (the FBI is investigating the alleged planned attack).

Huffington tweeted:

“The group Anonymous launches Anonymous Analytics, a financial research group:”

She went after Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in another tweet:

“Romney calls #OWS "class warfare." Why was it not class warfare when the bankers got bailed out by the middle class?”

And she’s taken a dig at Fox News:

“If this Fox News producer went to #OWS to get dumb comments he could use to discredit the protest, he failed:”

And it’s more than personal bylines and tweets. The Huffington Post published an article by Huffington Post blogger Anna Bahr on Wednesday titled “'Occupy Wall Street': How You Can Help.”

“The Lower Manhattan encampment swarming with protesters ranging from students to socialists to slackers and celebrities is amassing support across the globe,” it reads.

"If you can't make the trip to downtown New York and offer a resounding chant of "Hip Hooray, Make the Corporations Pay," there are still ways to help out.”

The article then encourages readers to donate money to Occupy Wall Street by mail and online, and provides links and addresses. The rest of the article details how to donate groceries, food deliveries, books, medical supplies, showers and laundry, and other miscellaneous items.

On Sept. 15, Huffington re-tweeted a tweet by a user who had quoted Huffington herself:

“Digital media companies have a great future if they include the best of traditional media: fairness, accuracy, fact checking – AH [Arianna Huffington]”

On Sept. 30, she proclaimed on Twitter, “Site of the Day: We Are The 99 Percent” -- the Occupy Wall Street supporters’ Tumblr blog.

On Oct. 3, a slideshow and accompanying article appeared on Huffington Post called “'We Are The 99 Percent': Stories Of The Great Recession's Victims,” featuring photos and stories of people who posted them on the blog that was started in connection with the Occupy Wall Street protests across the country.

The article says:

“Now in its third week, the Occupy Wall Street protests, criticized for lacking a clear objective, now seems only to be growing in strength despite this weekend's arrest of 700 protestors.”