“A new study shows . . .”: The inadequacy of mainstream media reporting medical research. “Trouble is, as any frequent morning news show viewer can tell you, when reporting on what today’s “new study shows,” reporters routinely fail to provide viewers with much (or sometimes any) detail or context — Who did the research/study? Who funded it? How large was the sample size? How does it compare to similar studies in the field? — of the sort that allows viewers to decide how much credence to lend the research or where to look for additional information.
This morning, for example, none of these questions were answered for viewers of CBS’s ‘The Early Show’ in its report on ‘new research’ about how men and women process jokes. Here is the entirety of Hannah Storm’s report:
‘What’s so funny? New research says it depends on who you are. Some think ‘The Three Stooges.’ [Cue footage of Mo, Larry and Curly]. Men apparently like slapstick comedy a lot more than women in this study. Women prefer a good joke instead.’” (via Medpundit)