ERIC Number: ED176282
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Science News of Controversy: The Case of Marijuana. Journalism Monographs No. 62.
Shepherd, R. Gordon
Journalism Monographs, n62 Aug 1979
A study of news refraction was conducted to determine how well the press has functioned in popularizing scientific views and findings on a subject with direct implications for a controversial social issue. In reporting the marijuana question, the press produced a certain amount of refraction or news-slanting. For example, science articles publicized were somewhat more pathology-oriented and variable in judgment than science articles not publicized, hinting at a mixture of conservative and sensationalistic tendencies. At the same time, personal views of authorities publicized by the press were less likely to affirm marijuana-related pathologies than the majority of scientific reports appearing in scientific literature, primarily when considering the issues of addiction and escalation. The actual marijuana expertise of authorities quoted by the press was, on the average, low. These trends waxed and waned according to particular mass journals or journal types making up the sample. The main current of the findings, however, leads to the conclusion that the press, in reporting the marijuana issue, has managed to keep refraction within reasonable bounds. (Author/AEA)
Descriptors: Content Analysis, Drug Abuse, Marihuana, Media Research, News Media, News Reporting, Newspapers, Periodicals, Public Opinion, Science Education, Scientific Literacy
AEJ Publications Manager, School of Journalism and Mass Communications, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455 ($2.50)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Collected Works - Serials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association for Education in Journalism.