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It Ain't Nescessarily So...Ch 2-3

Note: Apparently I am in a very scenario oriented mood tonight and therefore I have explained my feelings on these chapters in such a way.

Chapter 2 of It Ain't Nescessarily So had a main focus on the idea of creating a lengthy and 'informative' news story from a very small bit of research. This is often the case when a newspaper wants to report on the same stories that all the other papers are doing. They throw together a quick little something that they pull of google and then call it a day without really getting into the topic. These types of reporters often write without full comprehension of the topic themselves.

Ex: For me to write an article tonight on Nuclear Power and Effects on Power Plant Employees that was to appear in an on campus science news magazine/paper tomorrow would be completely impossible without substantial amounts of outside research. It is likely that I would not have the time to prepare a completely accurate and clear report in this short period. Hence, this is the same situation that many reporters fall into...though they seem to just roll with it, which is not the always the best thing. This type of, excuse my language...'Half-Ass' reporting simply isn't benefiting anyone and can often be inaccurate because of the lack of in depth research.

For instance; if I was to include a health survey from a power plant dated 2001, it is essentially outdated. But, because this is the first one that I came across in my research I used it. Come to find out that in 2004 the same health survey was handed out and the health of the workers had improved dramatically. I would be wrong on so many levels here.

I mean YES, there is this understood time crunch for reporters. I respect the fact that they have a very short time period in order to come up with good news stories. But the thing is that if you are truly a good journalists you don't need to rely on the bullshit research to get you by. You (the journalist) should be so good under pressure that this type of thing never comes up.

Comments (2)

Good point. The "science reporter" may cover the space program one day, a flu outbreak the next day, and robotics the next. There simply isn't time to cover all the subtleties of subjects that your sources will have spent decades mastering. Like many specialists, scientists sometimes have difficulty communicating with the general public.

A reporter has to be an expert in asking good questions.

Leslie Rodriguez:

I was thinking about what was said in class about science reports being inaccurate...by Jason Pugh.

I felt as if he was trying to point a finger at one group, whether it be the scientists or the reporters...but yet in the end he blamed the misinterpretations as being a fluke in the 'system' of translating the scientist's finding into a reporters article.

Personally I agree with Dr.Jerz, that it depends on the reporters ability to ask questions that answer queries about things the reporter is 'ify' on.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 25, 2005 8:16 PM.

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