When people think of misinformation, they often focus on popular and social media. But in a paper published April 12 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, University of Washington faculty members Jevin West and Carl Bergstrom write that scientific communication — both scientific papers and news articles written about papers — also has the potential to spread misinformation.
The researchers note that this doesn’t mean that science is broken. “Far from it,” write West, an associate professor at the UW Information School and the Center for an Informed Public’s inaugural director, and Bergstrom, a UW biology professor and a CIP faculty member. “Science is the greatest of human inventions for understanding our world, and it functions remarkably well despite these challenges. Still, scientists compete for eyeballs just as journalists do.”
UW News asked West and Bergstrom to discuss misinformation in and about science. Read the full article in UW News.