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News Archives 3821-3840
Number Title Post Date
3821 Pentagon & US State Department Launch Unhinged War On WikiLeaks 12/08/2010 09:24:51
3822 Fallibility Of DNA Evidence Exposed - AGAIN! 13/08/2010 14:48:07
3823 NVIC Launches New Volunteer Section Of Website! 13/08/2010 15:07:28
3824 After Avandia: Does The FDA Have A Drug Problem? 13/08/2010 15:14:17
3825 WHO Swine Flu 'Experts' Linked To Vaccine Producers 13/08/2010 15:19:31
3826 Doctors Kept In The Dark About Flu Vaccine Fiasco 13/08/2010 15:22:33
3827 How WikiLeaks Is Changing The Face Of Journalism 13/08/2010 15:39:49
3828 Journalism Warning Labels - Contents Not Verified 16/08/2010 09:18:32
3829 Call To Examine Drug Dealer Connections Of Australian Swine Flu 'Experts' 16/08/2010 09:22:46
3830 WikiLeaks Julian Assange On Amnesty International & The Wall Street Journal 16/08/2010 10:01:59
3831 WikiLeaks Refuses To Be Threatened By Pentagon 16/08/2010 10:05:02
3832 UK Government Scapegoating The Sick & Disabled 17/08/2010 10:56:48
3833 Diabetes Drugs Cause Increased Bone Fracture Risk 17/08/2010 11:00:04
3834 The Digital Surveillance State 17/08/2010 11:03:44
3835 Clueless Commentators Think That It's Possible To Stop WikiLeaks 17/08/2010 11:07:38
3836 Soldier Who Found Rocket Launcher At WikiLeaks Scene Says No Attack Was Being Planned 17/08/2010 11:10:08
3837 Numerous Trials Reveal The Scope Of UNUM Insurance Misdeeds 18/08/2010 11:17:47
3838 XMRV Virus In Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Patients Confirmed By US Government 18/08/2010 11:20:42
3839 Mother Launches Lawsuit Against Gardasil Vaccine Manufacturer 18/08/2010 11:23:36
3840 US Department Of Justice To Investigate Pharma Bribes Abroad 18/08/2010 11:25:49

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Journalism Warning Labels - Contents Not Verified
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Contents Not Verified

It seems a bit strange to me that the media carefully warn about and label any content that involves sex, violence or strong language — but there's no similar labelling system for, say, sloppy journalism and other questionable content.

I figured it was time to fix that, so I made some stickers. I've been putting them on copies of the free papers that I find on the London Underground. You might want to as well.

A sheet of stickers.

The articles these stickers are attached to are used strictly as an illustration: I'm not passing judgment on the specific articles or journalists. Hopefully that'll stop anyone claiming I've libelled them.

Statistics, survey results and/or equations in this article were sponsored by a PR company.

Let's start with the obvious one. It seems like half the content of the tabloids are made up of this: bits of 'research' put out by a PR team with the questionable backing of a cash-strapped university somewhere. 

I'm not sure how these newspapers would fill their pages without these.

This article is basically just a press release, copied and pasted.

Oh yeah, that's what they use. I forgot.

Medical claims in this article have not been confirmed by peer-reviewed research.

The Daily Mail's attempt to classify everything as either 'causing' and 'curing' cancer is already well documented, but there's plenty of wacky medical claims in all the newspapers. Ooh, look, some healing crystals.

This article is based on an unverified, anonymous tipoff.

This sticker's mainly for celebrity articles: Starsuckers did a good job of showing just how little verification is frequently done.

To meet a deadline, this article was plagiarised from another news source.

To be fair, newspaper journalists have far too little time to do far too much, particularly with the steadily collapse of print circulations. If a story breaks just before the deadline, they may just copy it: but it seems only fair to require labelling in a case like this.

This article contains unsourced, unverified information from Wikipedia.

...and we all know what happens when you do this.

Journalist does not understand the subject they are writing about.

Now this'd be fine, if journalists were willing or able to call upon expert sources to verify claims, and then to quote their responses. Otherwise you get front-page headlines about cures for cancer based on small irrelevant studies on mice.

Journalist hiding their own opinions by using phrases like 'some people claim'.

More common among pundits and comment writers than newshounds, but still worth flagging.

To ensure future interviews with subject, important questions were not asked.

Is there some celebrity with a wacky religion they're really touchy about? Don't worry: no-one on the gossip pages will dare ask them about it. They can't risk being blackballed.

Includes content written by Richard Littlejohn.

Enough said, really.

Make your own!

If you'd like your own set, grab an A4 13-by-5 sheet of stickers (they're labelled as '65 per sheet' or Avery L7651), and print out this PDF template. If you're in America, then Scott has kindly put together a US version that fits on Avery's Letter-size 5160 labels or equivalent.

Contact

And if you can think of any others, drop me an email or talk to me on Twitter.

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