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sensationalism

eSkeptic for March 5, 2022

“Havana Syndrome” is the latest in a long list of health scares involving the fear of new technology. The present panic involves claims of a secret weapon that uses sound or microwaves to zap people anywhere in the world. Robert Bartholomew examines some of the sensational claims made in a recent 60 Minutes episode suggesting White House attacks amid ongoing political tensions with Russia.

60 Minutes Whips Up “Havana Syndrome” Hysteria, Airs Sensational Segment on White House “Attacks”

“Havana Syndrome” is the latest in a long list of health scares involving the fear of new technology. The present panic involves claims of a secret weapon that uses sound or microwaves to zap people anywhere in the world. Robert Bartholomew examines some of the sensational claims made in a recent 60 Minutes episode suggesting White House attacks amid ongoing political tensions with Russia.

eSkeptic for October 9, 2021

In episode 216, Michael Shermer speaks with Kathryn Paige Harden about her book The Genetic Lottery: Why DNA Matters for Social Equality. PLUS Robert Bartholomew Havana Syndrome Hysteria and the recent U.S. Government investigation into this probable psychogenic illness.

Havana Syndrome Hysteria and the Great Wild Goose Chase: Classified documents reveal skepticism of foreign actors & bolster the role of psychogenic illness

Have foreign agents been committing nefarious deeds, targeting dozens of American and Canadian diplomats and their families with an energy weapon, or is Havana Syndrome a social panic aided by sensational journalism, dubious science, and social media conspiracy theories? The contents of a U.S. Government investigation into “Havana Syndrome” released under the Freedom of Information Act, concluded that mass psychogenic illness likely played a major role.

Objectivity in Journalism: Should We Be Skeptical?

What is good journalism? The fundamentals of objective journalism have traditionally been the following: present the five Ws, get both sides of the story, and most important, keep your opinions to yourself. Journalistic fairness (i.e., getting both sides of the story) was created to ensure that journalists could present the news as neutrally as possible. But can it be done? In this article from Skeptic magazine 6.1, Alexandra Kitty examines the nature and challenges of journalistic objectivity.

13-05-01

In this week’s eSkeptic, Sharon Hill reviews The Martians Have Landed: A History of Media-driven Panics and Hoaxes, by Robert E. Bartholomew and Benjamin Radford (McFarland, 2012, ISBN: 978-0786464982).

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