How To Create A Moral Panic: Ask A Question, Get Opinions, But Ignore Facts
from the neat-tricks-for-journalists dept
Well, here’s a fun one. Despite study after study after study after study after study, all showing that various text messaging and “txt speak” hasn’t harmed kids reading or writing skills in the slightest (and, in fact, kids today read and write significantly more than in the past), how would you go about creating a moral panic around the idea that the internet is harming kids language skills?
- Ignore all the evidence.
- Send out a survey to parents asking them if they think the internet harms the ability of kids to write well
- Report the results of that survey of what parents think without actually backing it up with facts or evidence.
Bingo. You’re done. Forget push polling, this is push reporting. The reporting itself is designed to plant the idea that kids are having trouble writing well, due to the internet, despite a near total lack of supporting evidence (and plenty of evidence to the contrary).