Throughout the world the public is showing increasing interest in medical and scientific subjects and journalists largely spread this information, with an important impact on knowledge and health. Clearly, therefore, the relationship between the journalist and his sources is delicate: freedom and independence of information depend on the independence and truthfulness of the sources. The new "precision journalism" holds that scientific methods should be applied to journalism, so authoritative sources are a common need for journalists and scientists. We therefore compared the individual classifications and methods of assessing of sources in biomedical science and medical journalism to try to extrapolate scientific methods of evaluation to journalism. In journalism and science terms used to classify sources of information show some similarities, but their meanings are different. In science primary and secondary classes of information, for instance, refer to the levels of processing, but in journalism to the official nature of the source itself. Scientists and journalists must both always consult as many sources as possible and check their authoritativeness, reliability, completeness, up-to-dateness and balance. In journalism, however, there are some important differences and limits: too many sources can sometimes diminish the quality of the information. The sources serve a first filter between the event and the journalist, who is not providing the reader with the fact, but with its projection. Journalists have time constraints and lack the objective criteria for searching, the specific background knowledge, and the expertise to fully assess sources. To assist in understanding the wealth of sources of information in journalism, we have prepared a checklist of items and questions. There are at least four fundamental points that a good journalist, like any scientist, should know: how to find the latest information (the sources), how to assess it (the quality and authoritativeness), how to analyse and filter it (selection), how to deal with too many sources of information, sometimes case biased by conflicting interests (balance). The journalist must, in addition, know how to translate it to render it accessible and useful to the general public (dissemination), and how to use it best.
|Titolo:||Information sources in biomedical science and medical journalism : methodological approaches and assessment|
BRUNO, FLAVIA (Ultimo)
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore BIO/14 - Farmacologia|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2004|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1016/j.phrs.2003.12.021|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|