News propaganda is a type of propaganda covertly packaged as credible news, but without sufficient transparency concerning the news item's source and the motivation behind its release. Transparency of the source is one parameter critical to distinguish between news propaganda and traditional news press releases and video news releases.
As with any propaganda, news propaganda may be spread for widely different reasons including governance, political or ideological motivations, partisan agendas, religious or ethnic reasons, and commercial or business motivations; their purposes are not always clear. News propaganda also can be motivated by national security reasons, especially in times of war or domestic upheaval.
Government produced "news"
The UK Foreign Office, which spent £340m on propaganda activities in the UK alone in 2001 , previously funded British Satellite News, a free television news and feature service. Production of British Satellite News ceased in September 2009.
Government produced "news"
In the United States, according to a report by Pulitzer-prize winning journalist David Barstow in The New York Times, the George W. Bush administration has been increasingly criticized for the aggressive use of a tool typical of public relations: previously prepared, ready-to-serve news that big corporations regularly distribute to TV stations in order to sell products or services. What is referred to by the report as propaganda is usually distributed through the use of a Video news release (or VNR).
A New York Times editorial (March 16, 2005) entitled "And now, the counterfeit news" affirms that at least 20 U.S. federal agencies, like the Department of Defense and the U.S. Census Bureau, produced and distributed hundreds of TV news reports since 2001 that were aired as if they were produced by the media. The same report says that this practice was also utilized by the Clinton Administration. Another report  details the use of this practice by the United States Department of Agriculture.
During the 2010 financial crisis in Greece, the media openly played a protecting role towards the government. Mainly the news program of Mega Channel has been criticised by many other media as well as political parties as playing a role as part of the government propaganda in favour of the International Monetary Fund.
- Advocacy journalism
- Bush administration payment of columnists
- Freedom of the Press
- Glenn Beck
- Journalism ethics and standards
- Journalism scandals
- List of topics related to public relations and propaganda
- Managing the news
- Mass media
- News satire
- Propaganda model
- Public relations
- Video news release
- William L. Laurence
- The Guardian David Miller: "The propaganda we pass off as news around the world" February 15, 2006
- New York Times editorial: And now, the counterfeit news - March 16, 2005, by David Barstow and Robin Stein.
- Journalists challenge license of Fox TV in Tampa on evidence of false and distorted news reports - from Mindfully.org. Journalists Jane Akre and Steve Wilson vs. WTVT Fox-13 in Tampa. Jan 3, 2005.
- Florida station facing consequences for not airing complete BGH story - from NewFarm.org.
- Military news programs secure a public outlet - published on March 9, 2005, by the St. Petersburg Times. Tampa Bay Area Government-access television (GATV) channels Air Defense Department programming that also goes to military bases and features anchors in uniform.
- The Boston Globe – Patricia Smith’s virtual reality - article by TransparencyNow.com.
- Drug Control Office faulted for issuing fake news tapes - published on Jan 7, 2005, by The Washington Post, written by Ceci Connolly.
- How to write distorted news – NY Times vs. Washington Post - from Rasmusen Weblog. July 22, 2004.
- Fake news, fake reporter - by Eric Boehlert (Salon.com). Feb. 10, 2005.
- Wanted : 250,000 Americans to fight fake news and government propaganda - from the Center for Media and Democracy, publishers of PRWatch.org.
- sniggle.net: News Trolls - brief descriptions of historical examples of fake news items originating both inside and outside the newsroom
- Press release about the Federal Propaganda Prohibition Act of 2005, legislation proposed by Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro
Media watchdog organizations
- Accuracy in Media watchdog group with a self-proclaimed Conservative bias
- FAIR.org - Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting; Media watchdog group with a self-proclaimed Liberal bias
- MediaChannel.org affiliates - A list of over 1,100 Internet communities around the world focused on media issues.
- Media Matters for America - Media watchdog group founded by David Brock
- MediaWatch.com - 20 years of activism
- PR Watch.org - published by the Center for Media and Democracy
- SpinWatch monitoring PR and spin
- Transparency Now : Media criticism and news ethics