Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sharks keep seagrass tidy!

I subscribe to several news headline fees for my google desktop, and one of them comes from Discover.

Today a headline read:

"Sharks keep seagrass tidy"

So I read it... and, no, sharks do NOT keep sea grass tidy. They pray on the dugong - which eat the seagrass. Because the dugong move around a great deal to avoid predation, they end up "mowing the lawn," keeping the seagrass tidy.

Sharks "indirectly" keep the seagrass tidy, but that's not the same thing.

The reason why I'm making such a big deal about this is that I really, really dislike misleading headlines. Misleading headlines are misinforming headlines. Someone reads the headline and doesn't have the time to read the article will still think to themselves, "sharks keep sea grass tidy. Who knew?"

So as regards sharks t hat's not a "bad" piece of information, but it's part of a trend of news distortion that could have far reaching implications.

Just as headlines that say, "90% of Americans think the President's an idiot." Then when you get to the fine print you see that they're talking about the views of 1000 Americans from a Democratic stronghold...

(And don't get me wrong. I'm not Republican or Democrat...I'm in despair over both parties. All politicians are crooks, and because *we* keep electing politicians who are crooks, and don't do anything to take them out of power, the USA is in big trouble...)

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