So: I found another report on the AAAS panel from a week ago on science and the media. This one allows me to further quote myself, and thus do less actual work to explain what I think:
Chris Mooney — a widely published freelance science journalist who writes a blog — lamented the Internet’s fragmented nature and many Web writers’ cavalier attitude toward accuracy.
“If you care about science being part of the common culture in America, the kinds of trends were talking about are pretty disastrous,” Mooney said. “There’s no ‘Cosmos’ in science blogging,” he added, referring to the PBS science series that drew millions of viewers.
While many Web sites deal with science well, Mooney said, “polemicism” is more common than accuracy online, “especially in the blogosphere. The Web empowers good and bad alike. Misinformation not only competes with, but often defeats, good information.”
I wonder if it is studying history, and reading so many dead tree books this semester at Princeton, that has made me so crotchety? Hmmm.
But I stand by the point–I blog every day, and I’ll probably never quit. But I’m not convinced that science blogging reaches much beyond the already converted, the people who really least need to read it. And give that this is so, do ten science bloggers really serve as any replacement for one laid off major newspaper science reporter–or is it just impossible to even make the comparison?
And speaking of misinformation defeating good information on the web–well, just see this post about vaccines, and try to read all the comments…after which, I expect that if you’re anything like me, you’ll just shake your head.
Links to this Post
- My Plan For Health » Blog Archive » Facts and Fitness | May 12, 2009