Science and Journalism – News from El Salvador

In conclusion, people are very concerned about what we do with technology. Callers know it and that’s why news about health, the environment, technological change, or the climate consequences of industrialization have a good audience.

The role that science plays in today’s collective consciousness is very important. So much so that it has been said that without technology intervening in daily life our world would be very different.

However, science never ceases to muddle for a number of reasons. The first is due to the so-called Frankenstein syndrome, or the conviction that generates the fear that humanity will end up being dominated by machines; and second, that we end up like the magician’s apprentice in Disney’s fantasy, destroying the world through the uncontrolled misuse of technology, first against the environment and then against man himself.

In addition, given the excessive communication in which we live, the elements of any catastrophic news must be taken as an indisputable fact (such as the “prediction” circulated a few weeks ago according to which in San Salvador temperatures of between 45 and 55 degrees Celsius).

In conclusion, people are very concerned about what we do with technology. Callers know it and that’s why news about health, the environment, technological change, or the climate consequences of industrialization have a good audience.

However, between reporters and researchers, and between journalists and scientists, it is not uncommon for disagreements to occur. The two speak different languages, have different interests, deal with different times, and think of media for different purposes.

And this happens not only in scientific subjects, but also in economic journalism, political journalism, and even sports journalism. So that scientists, economists, and sports reporters have no choice but to adapt to news formats rather than the other way around: the communicators are in charge…and the information and articles everyone wants to be eligible for are published.

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The truth is that reporting objectively on scientific issues is not easy. So much so that even in the field of science the objectivity of the (and essential) facts that you dream about is not reached … not to mention the issues behind which there are millionaires, ideological or political interests. Because, as experience shows, complete objectivity is something difficult to achieve, and even more so if it goes against the grain of the cultural mainstream, a generalized sensitivity in relation to a particular subject, or – simply put – economic interests that generate so much. The benefits, as long as the ideas are irresistible to the simple “fact-finding” journalistic analysis remain undoubted.

An example of this is when an expert is cited on any prominent scientific topic (climate change, genetic manipulation, cryptocurrency, human rights, to name a few), but the journalist who wrote the memo in question leads it with a title that, while attractive, is even Sensational, it offends the content of the interview itself, in its content of facts and statements. What do most readers take? With a title that infrequently reflects the interviewer’s biases—or interests—than what the expert in question wants to communicate.

But don’t think, reader, that I’m putting journalists all in the same bag. Objectively speaking, communicators do not have to be entirely scientific experts… Moreover, they are subject to certain times for disseminating information which in many cases precludes the selection and clarity of what is disseminated. I take it for granted, indisputably, that there are very good professional journalists out there.

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These are the facts which I have referred to in my previous article as ‘technical constructions’…and not so much that I ‘deny’ the fact that the climate issue is not only important, but fundamental, it is appropriately treated. Dimensions: Not so much that it burns the saint, nor so much that it doesn’t shine…

Eng/ @carlosmayorare

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Myrtle Frost

"Reader. Evil problem solver. Typical analyst. Unapologetic internet ninja."

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