The Michelle Bachmann Factor

In a new study published in the journal Health Communication, a  content analysis of media coverage of Michele Bachmann’s erroneous comments that the HPV vaccine causes mental retardation explores the relationship between truth-telling (the presentation of accurate information) and balance (presenting opposing perspectives of an issue equally and legitimately) in public health reporting. Of 200 articles analyzed, about 50% provided correction and about 40% provided a counterpoint. Researchers also found that health reporters tended to engage in truth-telling and balance more than political reporters. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

For the abstract


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