Saturday, October 21, 2006

Plug of the Week.

So while on my roadtrip last week to UNI and home I was of course listening to NPR. During "Talk of the Nation" they brought up the issue of the spinach epidemic and how scientist may have found strong evidence tracing the spread back to certain farms in central California. What is important is that they stressed 'may have', and by no means tried to express 100% causality. They then discussed the difficulty in securing a definite source, genetic mutations in the bacteria and so forth. After a while I lost the KC NPR station and was not quite close enough to Des Moines to receive theirs. This being so, I turned the dial to 1040 AM radio out of Des Moines. As a member of Clear Channel their news sections are produced by Fox News Radio; during Fox's radio segment they too mentioned the spinach epidemic. However, their story differed in that they anounced that scientist had found the source, not may have, not suspected. The reason I bring this up is not because I care all too much about where the source is or if they have found it or not. I care because it reminded me of how very important quality reporting is to staying informed, and by how easily it is to be misinformed by simple changes to syntax. Not that NPR is perfect, without bias, or even objective, I do however enjoy their commitment to in-depth reporting and to giving the listener as much information as possible during a broadcast.

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