Unspun: Finding Facts in a World of Disinformation
On April 24, investigative reporter Brooks Jackson and UPenn professor Kathleen Hall Jamieson are set to release a new book that is sure to be of interest to Framing Science readers...from the news release:
Friday, March 30, 2007
UnSpun: Finding Facts in a World of Disinformation, a new book described as "the secret decoder ring for the 21st-century world of disinformation," will officially be released by Random House on April 24. Co-authored by the Annenberg Public Policy Center's Brooks Jackson and Kathleen Hall Jamieson, the paperback lays bare the art of spinning - rampant in the world of politics, marketing and news.
Jackson, who directs APPC's FactCheck.org website, and Jamieson, APPC's director, teamed up with Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Signe Wilkinson of the Philadelphia Daily News to detail how spin has worked successfully in selling everything from war and taxes to emu oil and "tall" coffees.
The authors are particularly excited about a unique feature of unSpun, a companion website that allows them to update the book online. For example, after unSpun went to press, new data on the homeless population became available and is now posted on the site, http://www.factcheck.org/unspun/.
Jamieson calls this feature "a pioneer use of the internet" that will enable researchers and authors to keep print publications current, as well as to provide supplemental data. UnSpun's source notes also are included on the website.
Said Jackson: "What we've tried to do with this book is show how often we voters and consumers get spun without even knowing it, and why. We share with our readers some of the tools we use everyday at FactCheck.org to de-bunk the malarkey and find reliable information quickly using the internet."
In advance of the book's release veteran journalist Bill Moyers wrote: "Read this book and you will not go unarmed into the political wars ahead of us. Jackson and Jamieson equip us to be our own truth squad, and that just might be the salvation of democracy."
To create wiser adults, add empathy to the school curriculum.
- Stories are at the heart of learning, writes Cleary Vaughan-Lee, Executive Director for the Global Oneness Project. They have always challenged us to think beyond ourselves, expanding our experience and revealing deep truths.
- Vaughan-Lee explains 6 ways that storytelling can foster empathy and deliver powerful learning experiences.
- Global Oneness Project is a free library of stories—containing short documentaries, photo essays, and essays—that each contain a companion lesson plan and learning activities for students so they can expand their experience of the world.
This is what the world will look like, 250 million years from now
To us humans, the shape and location of oceans and continents seems fixed. But that's only because our lives are so short.
The future of education and work will rely on teaching students deeper problem-solving skills.
- Asking kids 'What do you want to be when you grow up?' is a question that used to make sense, says Jaime Casap. But it not longer does; the nature of automation and artificial intelligence means future jobs are likely to shift and reform many times over.
- Instead, educators should foster a culture of problem solving. Ask children: What problem do you want to solve? And what talents or passions do you have that can be the avenues by which you solve it?
- "[T]he future of education starts on Monday and then Tuesday and then Wednesday and it's constant and consistent and it's always growing, always improving, and if we create that culture I think that would bring us a long way," Casap says.
These Jurassic predators resorted to cannibalism when hit with hard times, according to a deliciously rare discovery.
- Rare fossil evidence of dinosaur cannibalism among the Allosaurus has been discovered.
- Scientists analyzed dinosaur bones found in the Mygatt-Moore Quarry in western Colorado, paying special attention to bite marks that were present on 2,368 of the bones.
- It's likely that the predatory carnivore only ate their already-dead peers during times when resources were scarce.
As a doctor, I am reminded every day of the fragility of the human body, how closely mortality lurks just around the corner.