Science Literacy and the Processing of Scientific Information thru the Media Filter

Science literacy is one of my passions:-) For example…I use articles like this one to show students how the “media” uses limited data and information to “sell” articles and how “surfers” gain information and then propagate information, loosely rooted in fact, as fact.

ThIs internet post is a great example.. “Hurricane Irene May Have Triggered Earthquakes..”

http://www.ouramazingplanet.com/4392-hurricane-irene-triggered-earthquake-aftershocks.html?cmpid=514629

The article implied a reality…implied, to get people to read the article. 🙂  Internet surfers don’t bother to read, but instead take the title as “they say” fact. Hollywood then produces a movie :-D….anyone remember “the Core?” Haha.

The actual researchers presenting the info said this,

“The Georgia Tech team is not yet convinced the sharp increase in aftershocks after Hurricane Irene is truly linked to the hurricane — it could just be a coincidence, Meng said. For example, there were unexplained small spikes before the hurricane arrived in Virginia.

“This is a debated topic,” Meng said. “We hope to find solid evidence to prove or disprove the ..”

I would not use this article in a manner to prove or disprove my own opinions or to imply deception on the part of the authors or site, but instead as a “prompt” to begin a discussion and to raise awareness of the “human” processing of science based information.

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