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Coronavirus and media bias

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bmw
Posts: 1886
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 1:02 am

Coronavirus and media bias

Post by bmw » Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:14 am

2 examples today. First - collusion? Am I supposed to believe that 3 different media outlets all independently came up with the word "backfire" ?

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The second example - perhaps a bit more subtle, but a perfect example of the phrase "there's lies, damned lies, and statistics." This comes from the New York Times Coronavirus map/graphs page that they update multiple times a day and have done so for over a month. On here they have a bar graph that shows the number of daily new cases of Coronavirus. The graph USED to just have the raw data. Well - now that we're 4 days past peak, suddenly they've decided to overlay the graph with a 7-day moving average. Moving averages can be abused to show trends that may or may not exist, and I think this is a perfect example. Instead of the graph going down, it now appears to still be going up to the casual viewer. I drew on top of this a blue line to show how moving averages can be abused - mine is more akin to a 2-day average.

Image



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Turkeytop
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Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by Turkeytop » Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:35 am

Pretty obvious, isn't it' Backfire isn't a very commonly used word. They all called each other and said "Let's say backfire today."



Rate This
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Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by Rate This » Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:42 am

bmw wrote:
Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:14 am
2 examples today. First - collusion? Am I supposed to believe that 3 different media outlets all independently came up with the word "backfire" ?

Image

The second example - perhaps a bit more subtle, but a perfect example of the phrase "there's lies, damned lies, and statistics." This comes from the New York Times Coronavirus map/graphs page that they update multiple times a day and have done so for over a month. On here they have a bar graph that shows the number of daily new cases of Coronavirus. The graph USED to just have the raw data. Well - now that we're 4 days past peak, suddenly they've decided to overlay the graph with a 7-day moving average. Moving averages can be abused to show trends that may or may not exist, and I think this is a perfect example. Instead of the graph going down, it now appears to still be going up to the casual viewer. I drew on top of this a blue line to show how moving averages can be abused - mine is more akin to a 2-day average.

Image
That bar graph shows it leveling off over the last 3 days after rising for awhile. It looks right to me. I don’t get any impression like you are suggesting. One of those entities probably wrote a story that the others picked up. Using the same verbiage is simply lazy but it’s not a conspiracy...



bmw
Posts: 1886
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 1:02 am

Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by bmw » Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:43 am

I'm not suggesting it isn't a common word, but there are so many different words or phrases you could use, and they all choose the same exact one. Either collusion or plagiarism. Take your pick



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Turkeytop
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Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by Turkeytop » Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:49 am

bmw wrote:
Thu Apr 09, 2020 11:43 am
I'm not suggesting it isn't a common word, but there are so many different words or phrases you could use, and they all choose the same exact one. Either collusion or plagiarism. Take your pick
Possibly, as professional journalists, they each chose "backfire" as the most appropriate term.

What does FOX News call it? Marmalade?



screen glare
Posts: 1963
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Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by screen glare » Fri Apr 10, 2020 6:01 am

Yeah. Using the American conversational word “backfire” is rare and exotic, bmw.

And certainly in headline writing one wouldn’t want to select the quickest and most oft’ heard way to describe...

“...one’s actions or words coming unexpectedly back to their source with resulting negative consequences for the original sender.”

Man oh man - just use those 18 words, instead! And make it snappy, bm!
Last edited by screen glare on Sat Apr 11, 2020 5:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Turkeytop
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Re: Coronavirus and media bias

Post by Turkeytop » Fri Apr 10, 2020 8:56 am

The evil media is biased against that poor virus. It's so unfair.



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