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Posts Tagged "journalism"

Absolutely Maybe

5 Shortcuts to Keep Data on Risks in Perspective

Cartoon in Heaven's Department of Epidemiology

“Risky” is definitely not a one-size-fits-all concept. It’s not just that we aren’t all at the same level of every risk. Our tolerance of risk-taking in different situations can be wildly different, too. Our judgments about our own vulnerability and how we feel about what we might gain or lose can make a risk loom [...]

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Absolutely Maybe

Vacation: What’s the Point?

Cartoon - what did you do on vacation? Went cherry-picking

It’s not really news when a journalist goes cherry-picking for juicy tidbits to fit a narrative, is it? We all fall into the trap of going too easy on the things we want to believe. So what is it about a piece about vacations in Vox that got me rushing to the keyboard? Science journalist [...]

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Assignment: Impossible

Visions: No Worlds Left To Conquer

In the series “Visions,” science fiction about the very latest research will be paired with analysis looking into the facts behind the fiction. The goal is to marry ripped-from-the-headlines science fiction with analysis into the possibilities hinted at by new discoveries. It took a while before I figured out that my life as I knew [...]

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@ScientificAmerican

Young Science Journalists Take to the Zoo

Thirteen budding young German science writers recently grilled veteran scribes to learn more about the field during a three-day workshop “The Intelligence of Animals” run by Spektrum der Wissenchaft. Spektrum is the name of Scientific American‘s edition in Germany. The young reporters, “Wissensschreibers,” between 12 and 16 years old, learned about the essential skills of science [...]

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Compound Eye

If you’ve ever wondered whether to take the Daily Mail seriously as a news source…

…consider this: You might think, on reading this story, that myrmecologists had made a significant new discovery. But you’d be wrong. That’s because this isn’t a news story. There is no breaking research paper, or even a press release. Rather, this is a YouTube clip extracted from an 8-year old nature documentary called Ants: Nature’s Secret [...]

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Cross-Check

The Genuine Articles: Why I’m Upbeat about Science Journalism’s Future

Which topic are science journalists most likely to talk about when they get together? A) The epistemological issues raised by multiverse theories; B) The revival of social Darwinist ideas in Tea Party rhetoric; C) The relevance of experiments on sea slug brains to the debate over free will; D) Statistical evidence linking global warming to [...]

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Guest Blog

Technogenic Disasters: A Deadly New Normal for the Media

Some go to school to become journalists. Others hit the road with a notebook, camera and insatiable curiosity, while others have a shocking moment of awareness of the complexity of the human condition and want to document it. I decided to enter the field when a war journalist showed me a roll of images from [...]

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Guest Blog

All about Stories: How to Tell Them, How They’re Changing, and What They Have to Do with Science

Communicating science is all about telling stories. A few days ago at the World Science Festival, a stellar panel of science journalists and writers sat down to discuss the ways in which the Web is shaping and changing how those stories are told. Moderating the "Telling Science Stories in Print and on the Web" discussion [...]

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Guest Blog

You’ll believe anything you read online, won’t you?

In July, 2010, one corner of the blogosphere erupted with the seething, burning rage that online communities seem to have a unique ability to muster. The spark that lit bloggers’ fuse was a decision by SEED Media Group decision-makers to allow a team of writers from PepsiCo Inc. to operate a blog about nutrition and [...]

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Molecules to Medicine

Covering Clinical Trials: a message for journalists and critical readers

Linnea Duff shows off her "famous lungs" at #ahcj13

My message: Ask the hard questions. The Association of Health Care Journalists annual conference (#ahcj13) covered a variety of topics, with lectures and panels followed by question and answer sessions. As with many conferences, it was tough to choose between competing sessions. I learned a great deal about health care, databases, and resources to help [...]

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Observations

Zero Evidence That LEGO Toys Harm Your Kids

Credit: Arielle Duhaime-Ross

LEGO toys have never been so controversial, or angry for that matter, but that should not stop your kids from playing with them. There has been a lot of noise over a study, released June 4, that looked into the evolution of the facial expressions printed on LEGO minifigures—those one and half-inch toy figurines that [...]

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Observations

Leif Robinson, 1939-2011: A pioneer of astronomy journalism

Leif Robinson at his Sky & Telescope office

I got the news today that one of the great figures in astronomy journalism and amateur astronomy, Leif Robinson, former editor of Sky & Telescope magazine, died yesterday at 71. Leif served as editor in chief of S&T from 1980 to 2000 and was a regular fixture at gatherings of professional and amateur astronomers alike. [...]

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Observations

The line between science and journalism is getting blurry….again

Human #1: "Hello, nice weather today, isn’t it?" Human #2: "Ummm…actually not. It’s a gray, cold, windy, rainy kind of day!" Many a joke depends on confusion about the meaning of language, as in the example above. But understanding the sources of such confusion is important in realms other than stand-up comedy, including in the [...]

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Voices

Culture Dish: Promoting Diversity in Science Writing

Image courtesy of Klari Reis - www.klariart.com

The most persistent — and infuriating — question about diversity in science writing has to be: “Why do we need diversity?” Sometimes that question is followed by this: “Isn’t science color-blind?” To answer that second question first — no, science is most definitely not color-blind, any more than history or politics or literature is color-blind. [...]

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