TR Gregory finds a particularly egregious and galling mismatch between the headline of a press release and the story itself. He asks, “Do the people who determine headlines not even read the stories?” One more entry in the file of evidence that science journalism isn’t working right. . . and on that note, Brian Switek has some general observations, leading to the following conclusion:
We all bitch and moan about how inaccurate news reports are, but unless we actively become engaged in this sort of reporting (infiltrating the “system,” as it were) our complaints will essentially make little difference outside our own little circles of science enthusiasts. Science bloggers are starting to change this and may play a bigger role in the future, but if we’re to ultimately improve science communication in the media more people with a solid grasp of science are going to have to get involved in the active generation and promulgation of stories rather than just complain about the result.
I always get a Life of Brian vibe when the discussion turns in this direction. “We could sit around here all day talking, passing resolutions, making clever speeches. It’s not going to shift one Roman soldier!”