Media Sensationalization of Social Science Research: Social Networking Insites
by Aryn Karpinski - May 28, 2009
Pros and cons exist in publicizing findings from exploratory conference presentations such as posters. Studies have shown that media reports about conference presentations of exploratory work, predominantly in medicine, often omit basic study facts and limitations. The social sciences appear to suffer enormously from media misreporting. The current commentary discusses this topic and the general media sensationalization of exploratory social science research, using one such study that examined the relationship between Facebook and academic performance as a case example. The commentary also notes the media and research communityís response to the example exploratory study and media hype, and provides suggestions for future research acquired from a graduate researcherís venture into the field of technology and education, specifically social-networking sites and education. Although conclusiveness may never be attained, the impact of social networking sites on college student life should be investigated comprehensively through respectful cross-discipline collaboration and collegiality between novice and experienced researchers.
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