Weight-of-Evidence Reporting: What Is It? Why Use It?

Dunwoody, Sharon
December 2005
Nieman Reports;Winter2005, Vol. 59 Issue 4, p89
The article explores the use of weight-of-evidence reporting in covering the issue of global warming. Both objectivity and balance are considered normative behaviors in the field of journalism and have evolved to serve as substitutes for truth claims. Journalist cannot be responsible for reporting the truth because they have neither the background nor the time to develop sufficient expertise about a topic or an issue to make validity judgments possible. Even though journalists have developed reasonable substitutes for validity claims, normative behaviors may mislead news audiences.


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