John Oliver pretty much nails it when he turns his ire against media reporting on press releases on scientific studies. Thanks, John. Spread the love.
I was struck by the idea that replication studies get so little love. That seems like something we could do something about.
Lest we forget:
Media companies want clicks/views/outrage traffic.
Headlines like ‘Study replicates results for the 938th time.’ do not draw that traffic like ‘Cancer cured by McShakes!’.
It is not in the media’s (fiduciary) interest to be rigorous or even factual about scientific topics.
A rule for assessing reports on pop science: If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
It’s also a good tip-off to beware when the lead-in is simply “Studies show that ...” without citing the researcher and a credible affiliation.