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Author Topic: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science  (Read 13866 times)

RSL

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2019, 03:18:44 pm »

That'll get 'em stirred up, Bernard.

LesPalenik

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2019, 03:24:06 pm »

Thank you for posting the link, Bernard
It's a good and well researched article, but unfortunately it has been written by scientists for scientists. Now we need someone to condense it for the masses.

BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2019, 03:48:41 pm »

There is this excellent article published in French in Le Monde.

https://www.lemonde.fr/blog/huet/2019/08/13/climato-scepticisme-et-medias-la-duperie/

Cheers,
Bernard

BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2019, 03:51:30 pm »

That'll get 'em stirred up, Bernard.

Well, it should. I would hope that media give a fair share of media surface to all parties, but this is clearly not the case here.

In short, it means that people with little to no scientific abilities defending the view that climat change is not the result of human activity are given huge space in the media to express their views vs skilled scientists recognized by their peers as following a rigorous approach to analyze climat change.

In other words, a lot of what is being shared by various media doesn't represent the views of the scientific community.

If 10 unknown guys are of the opinion that Hitler has never existed vs 100 recognized historians claiming that he is a true historical figure, do you expect media to give 50% air time to both views?

That's pretty much what's happening for climate change...

Cheers,
Bernard
« Last Edit: August 13, 2019, 03:54:32 pm by BernardLanguillier »
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mouse

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2019, 05:03:33 pm »

In short, it means that people with little to no scientific abilities defending the view that climat change is not the result of human activity are given huge space in the media to express their views vs skilled scientists recognized by their peers as following a rigorous approach to analyze climat change.

In other words, a lot of what is being shared by various media doesn't represent the views of the scientific community.

If 10 unknown guys are of the opinion that Hitler has never existed vs 100 recognized historians claiming that he is a true historical figure, do you expect media to give 50% air time to both views?

That's pretty much what's happening for climate change...

Cheers,
Bernard

An excellent warning but overly dense with verbiage that will confound most readers.  I am not sure it will be read (much less understood) by the target audience; namely "journalists" who routinely cover this topic. 

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amolitor

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2019, 05:13:27 pm »

Non-traditional media, much more than traditional, allows people to pick and choose what the want to hear. To a large extent, in fact, the providers help out by algorithmically "learning" what you want to see, in one way or another, and then biasing what you see to align with that.

So, you get echo chambers, amplified by what are almost certainly ridiculously simple algorithms.

Even absent algorithms, though, we can see how communities self-select.

The LuLa Coffee Corner has selected a little cadre of like-minded people who do most of the talking, sharing their links and information with one another. Sure, there are some nay sayers, but the cadre has learned to mostly ignore them. The naysayers have, for the most part, conceded the ground to the cadre because, ultimately, who cares?

Facebook is more nefarious, because everyone lives inside their own little curated cadre on Facebook, by design. It looks like Lula, except that instead of naysayers leaving, they are simply eased off into their own little cadre, and you never see them, and they never see you. This is what the algorithm adds.

Does one blame the non-traditional media and its algorithms, then? Given that this is what people will tend to do themselves anyways? The algorithm merely expedites and amplifies what was already there. Is there some moral obligation on the part of Facebook (or LuLa) to force alternative viewpoints, or viewpoints determined by editorial edict to be Correct, down the throats of the people.

Certainly this is what traditional media did and do. There is very limited feedback, a few letters to the editor from cranks, so in general the editorial oversight was driven internally, not by "what do the people want to see" so they simply did their best and, from time to time, simply told the truth as they saw it (see it) there being no obviously more profitable alternative.
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2019, 05:33:50 pm »

Non-traditional media, much more than traditional, allows people to pick and choose what the want to hear. To a large extent, in fact, the providers help out by algorithmically "learning" what you want to see, in one way or another, and then biasing what you see to align with that.

Indeed, but one of the problems pointed out by the article I have linked to is that traditional media also give way too much space to climatoseptics.

Cheers,
Bernard

LesPalenik

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2019, 05:57:34 pm »

Indeed, but one of the problems pointed out by the article I have linked to is that traditional media also give way too much space to climatoseptics.

Cheers,
Bernard

Indeed. They want sensational news, regardless how stupid or improbable they are.
Similar tactics are used also on financial websites and portals. One day they predict future share price of Apple as $300, next day someone else downgrades it $150.

Peter McLennan

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2019, 06:03:27 pm »

Indeed, but one of the problems pointed out by the article I have linked to is that traditional media also give way too much space to climatoseptics.

Cheers,
Bernard

Precisely, Bernard.  The findings are summarized on the first page:

These results demonstrate why climate scientists should increasingly exert their authority in scientific and public
discourse, and why professional journalists and editors should adjust the disproportionate
attention given to contrarians.


The problem is, arguing or discussing science with the CCC crowd is a complete waste of time, as we've seen here and elsewhere. 
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faberryman

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2019, 06:06:48 pm »

The general press does not remind the public that the earth is round, yet I saw the other day an article that a flat-earther was going to be launched in a steam powered rocket to prove his point.

Alan Goldhammer

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #11 on: August 13, 2019, 06:11:39 pm »

Washington Post published THIS today.  Of course it's based on real data so maybe it is classified as Fake News.  there is a nice picture of ice fishing at Lake Hoptacong in New Jersey (I think this is close to where Alan Klein lives) during the 1920s.  The lake no longer freezes over in the winter and New Jersey has the highest temperature increase of any of the 50 states based on this data set.
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faberryman

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2019, 06:16:56 pm »

...New Jersey has the highest temperature increase of any of the 50 states based on this data set.
But think of all the positive benefits Alan enjoys. Besides, he has cheap energy and a powerful air conditioning unit. Here, the heat index was 109F, and I was denied the pleasure of taking my dog for an afternoon walk.

Chris Kern

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #13 on: August 13, 2019, 06:23:23 pm »

. . . people with little to no scientific abilities defending the view that climat change is not the result of human activity are given huge space in the media to express their views vs skilled scientists recognized by their peers as following a rigorous approach to analyze climat change. . . .

If 10 unknown guys are of the opinion that Hitler has never existed vs 100 recognized historians claiming that he is a true historical figure, do you expect media to give 50% air time to both views?

That's pretty much what's happening for climate change...

But not in the "mainstream media"—the traditional news organizations that are curated by professional journalists:

Quote
If we condition the article count tallies using select mainstream media sources, i.e., sources that implement quality control through more traditional editorial standards . . . , the media visibility of the two groups is remarkably on par.

It seems to me that there are two interacting pathologies here: (1) the influence of traditional news organizations increasingly is being challenged by online sources dominated by angry people who express their emotions through their political agendas; (2) the angry people with political agendas tend to discount the information provided by experts.

BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #14 on: August 13, 2019, 07:32:55 pm »

But not in the "mainstream media"—the traditional news organizations that are curated by professional journalists:

It seems to me that there are two interacting pathologies here: (1) the influence of traditional news organizations increasingly is being challenged by online sources dominated by angry people who express their emotions through their political agendas; (2) the angry people with political agendas tend to discount the information provided by experts.

Agreed with your views, but regarding the original article, the two groups being on par in mainstream media is in itself a major issue.

Cheers,
Bernard

Chris Kern

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2019, 07:42:43 pm »

regarding the original article, the two groups being on par in mainstream media is in itself a major issue.

Sorry: I missed that on the first scan of the article.  Fair point.

But that's the way the craft works.  (I say this from the perspective of someone who once was guilty of committing journalism.)  We don't try to choose between conflicting opinions.

If someone mistates a factual claim, it is considered appropriate to point that out.  The "mainstream media" have done a competent job of documenting the lies that Trump has told since he entered politics, for example.

But when people with varying opinions express them, we report what they say rather than deciding for our readers/listeners/viewers which opinions they should believe.

The basic idea—at least, in the American practice of the craft—is that a reporter should avoid taking sides among competing opinions, whatever his personal beliefs.

However, I think the traditional news organizations have done a good job of reporting the scientific consensus on climate change, even if they have also given what may seem from some perspectives to be inordinate coverage to non-scientific points-of-view.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2019, 10:42:32 pm by Chris Kern »
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #16 on: August 13, 2019, 07:53:40 pm »

Sorry: I missed that on the first scan of the article.  Fair point.

But that's the way the craft works.  (I say this from the perspective who once was guilty of committing journalism.)  We don't try to choose between conflicting opinions.

Fair enough and objective reporting is part of the craft in most countries... BUT... objective reporting should come with a clear explanation of the credentials of the holder of the opinion being expressed.

My opinion on climate change has zero value at all, I don't have the competencies required to analyze data, nor have I attempted to analyze data. I would be shocked if the NY Times reported my opinion as being as valuable as that of a team from the MIT and if they gave the same amount of coverage to my opinion as that of the opinion of the said MIT team.

The reality is that not all our voices should have the same weight and media have a responsibility in terms of weighting the importance of the voices their are conveying to the public.

Cheers,
Bernard
« Last Edit: August 13, 2019, 09:06:21 pm by BernardLanguillier »
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Alan Klein

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #17 on: August 13, 2019, 10:25:59 pm »

It's OK if news organizations publish the results of honest research confirming the negative effects of global warming.  However, if they fail to report the results of honest research confirming the positive effects of global warming because of a political agenda on their part, then that's biased news reporting. 

PS:  I don't buy that the news over represents climate change skepticism.  Most news reports, news articles, nature programs, are forever complaining about climate change and how man is destroying the environment.  The referenced study compares scientists who have news articles from what I can tell from a brief review of the the study.  It doesn't;'t include layman and general articles from non-expert authorities who make up most of what we read and hear and see about these things.  So the study is tilted and means little.  What's the expression.  FIgures lie and liars figure.  We can come up with anything we want if we structure the study to meet the results we want.  Big deal.  How many articles have you read lately that is contrarian to global warming vs. those article that confirm it?  That's the real facts that the study should review if they want to do a study about these things..

jeremyrh

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2019, 01:40:26 am »

The BBC has been found guilty of breaking accuracy rules by presenting the views of climate change denier and former Tory politician Nigel Lawson as being of similar value to scientists:
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/09/bbc-radio-4-broke-impartiality-rules-in-nigel-lawson-climate-change-interview

The Coffee Corner is a perfect example of how the process works - an echo chamber where people work themselves into a frenzy repeating the same slogans over and over regardless of how many times they are refuted.
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: How media over-represents 15 times climatosceptiks fake science
« Reply #19 on: August 14, 2019, 03:39:01 am »

It's OK if news organizations publish the results of honest research confirming the negative effects of global warming.  However, if they fail to report the results of honest research confirming the positive effects of global warming because of a political agenda on their part, then that's biased news reporting. 

Agreed. But this isn't the point being discussed here.

PS:  I don't buy that the news over represents climate change skepticism.  Most news reports, news articles, nature programs, are forever complaining about climate change and how man is destroying the environment.  The referenced study compares scientists who have news articles from what I can tell from a brief review of the the study.  It doesn't;'t include layman and general articles from non-expert authorities who make up most of what we read and hear and see about these things.  So the study is tilted and means little.  What's the expression.  FIgures lie and liars figure.  We can come up with anything we want if we structure the study to meet the results we want.  Big deal.  How many articles have you read lately that is contrarian to global warming vs. those article that confirm it?  That's the real facts that the study should review if they want to do a study about these things..

I don't believe that layman and general articles from non experts have a strong impact on the opinion of the public. What has an impact is sources that are represented - often unfairly in this case - as being a legitimate authority.

The issue being described here is that those voices with limited legitimacy gets too much air time and therefore influence public more than they should.

I don't believe that anyone would be stupid enough to dispute the relevance of climate change/global warming and the impact human activity has on it through CO2 emissions simply out of a political agenda, right? I believe that the people who don't believe man originated CO2 emissions have a major negative impact have formed this opinion based on inputs they got from a source they consider legitimate.

Cheers,
Bernard
« Last Edit: August 14, 2019, 03:43:50 am by BernardLanguillier »
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