Abridge News

App review by
Christy Matte, Common Sense Media
Abridge News App Poster Image
Bias-battling news platform is small but clever.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can practice their reading and comprehension skills. They can learn to compare news sources and think critically about the information provided. They may also learn more about current events, science, politics, etc.

Ease of Play

Simple and clear navigation.

Violence

News stories sometimes include violence, including interpersonal violence, war, and terrorism.

Sex

News stories may include references to themes like sex work, infidelity, and sexual violence. 

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

News stories may include themes related to drinking, drugs, and smoking. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Abridge News compiles op-ed pieces on a variety of topics to reflect a broad spectrum of voices. The news is curated and reflects mainstream news topics. The news pieces present at the time of review had minimal violence and sexuality, but future stories depend on the trending news of the day. With or without mature content in the featured news stories, Abridge News may be a better fit with an older teen crowd because of its focus on nuanced critical thinking and keen awareness of current events. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

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What's it about?

ABRIDGE NEWS explores a variety of news topics - featured news, politics, international news, sports, business, science and health, and culture - and shares op-ed pieces that reflect different opinions on the subject. Each topic has a set of Quick Facts, or, bits of information that are generally agreed upon. Food for Thought then asks questions to get readers to think a little deeper and form their own opinions. For example, one topic is "Voting in the Age of Coronavirus." The Food for Thought section asks, "How should we alter elections during a pandemic? Is national vote-by-mail a good idea?" At the bottom, users can click on a spectrum line to read one of four op-ed pieces on the subject categorized by Left-Leaning Reactions or Right-Leaning Reactions. They can then choose an emoticon to show how they feel about the opinion they just read -- Agree, Disagree, or Undecided -- and specify how strongly they feel about their answer. After they've shared their thoughts, they can see how others reacted.

Is it any good?

This is a great tool for getting kids (and adults) thinking about how the same information can be interpreted in different ways. Abridge News is thought provoking and strives to provide a balance in points-of-view. In fact, according to their website, the op-ed pieces that Abridge News team chooses to match their story topics contain factual information while also reflecting the breadth of opinion on the subject. A small team writes much of the app's editorial content though, which makes it a challenge to make sure that there's no bias in what the team presents. But there's enough breadth of opinion to challenge readers. Abridge News isn't an app you'll turn to as a news source just yet, as the coverage isn't very broad, but it's great for encouraging readers to dig a little deeper on a select number of news stories. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about  being media savvy while using Abridge News. Do these news stories come from reputable sources? How do you know? What kind of bias might the news outlets have?

  • Families can talk about media bias. Compare the op-ed pieces on each end of the spectrum. How are they the same? How are they different? Do they have facts in common? 

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  • Families can talk about learning with apps. Do you think this is a good app for learning? Why or why not? What can you learn?

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love the news and current events

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

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