In a blog post earlier today I did a bit of a dissection, from my personal perspective of a big story that came out of AACR this week (see earlier post here).
No sooner had I hit the “upload” button, I became aware of a wonderfully written piece that was hitting the ‘blogosphere’ at the same time, from one of the authors already quoted in my earlier piece – Erika Check Hayden.
From the Blog “Last Word on Nothing” she wrote a piece entitled “What the ‘limits of DNA’ story reveals about the challenges of science journalism in the ‘big data’ age.
As I did in my earlier post, I will enumerate her key messages:
- Science consists of more and more “big data” studies whose findings depend on statistical methods that few of us reporters can understand on our own..
- Challenges in the news business are ratcheting up pressure on all of us.
- We are only as good as our sources.
- It’s becoming more difficult to trust traditional scientific authorities.
- Beware the deceptively simple story line.
- Getting the story right matters more than ever.
As much as I am tempted to do so, good practice prohibits me from just cutting and pasting her whole blog post here, but I do encourage you to go back and read what she says on each of these. Please do; it is worth the click and the read.
As you can see, a number of her points very much parallel my own, but rather than feel smug about that, it inspires me to keep doing this blog. And I aspire to writing on a subject as cogently and eloquently as she does.