The Media and the Contradictions in Commitments to the Fight against Climate Change
AbstractThis paper discusses the media and contradictions in the fight against climate change. It notes that there is widespread agreement on human-induced climate change (anthropogenic climate change) in addition to natural causes. Using results of empirical studies, the paper argues however that the media are succumbing, sometimes unknowingly, to the machinations of opponents of anthropogenic climate change who entice journalists to portray climate change as controversial, complex and uncertain. The media thus risk becoming one of the forces against global efforts to fight climate change given that media coverage shapes public perception, understanding and action. The paper tasks the media to properly scrutinize information, especially disguised views that fuel unnecessary debates and scepticism about climate change. The paper also recommends that the media should be wary of „objective. reporting which gives equal attention to views of climate change sceptics as well as to proponents of anthropogenic climate change. It recommends that the media should represent a pattern in climate change reporting to help them detect and eschew unnecessary views. The media should as well rely more on interpretative stories (than on news) to help them handle the analysis necessary to put climate change reporting in clear perspective for the audience.
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