Autism News Beat

An evidence-based resource for journalists

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Entries from October 2007

Essential reading

October 23rd, 2007 · 21 Comments · Urban legend

Tweet Do vaccines cause autism? The idea has never had much support from scientists, who tell us there is no empirical support for the claim. Lawyers, on the other hand, are divided on the question. In a remarkable series of court hearings which started last summer in the U.S. Court of Claims’ Office of Special […]

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The myth of the autism epidemic

October 22nd, 2007 · 13 Comments · Careless sourcing, Junk science, Narrative, Urban legend

Tweet Popular press coverage of autism is bedeviled by a number of misperceptions. Chief among these is the idea, stated with much certainty, that we are in the midst of an autism epidemic. In fact, it is far from certain that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders is any greater today than in the past. […]

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What’s wrong with telling a story?

October 11th, 2007 · 5 Comments · Critical thinking, Narrative

Tweet How skeptical can a reporter be while interviewing someone who is still grieving the loss of the perfect child? The question crossed my mind after reading Mary Lou Aguirre’s interview with Barbara Coppo, author of The Boy in the Window: A Journey Through an Unexpected Tragedy (Morgan James Publishing, $26.95), which appeared this week’s […]

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The evidence that dare not speak its name

October 6th, 2007 · 19 Comments · Kudos

Tweet Susan Jenks at Florida Today gives us an informed, thoughtful piece on Florida Tech’s commitment to empirical evidence, including this enlightened passage: “We want to educate the public about autism and the types of treatments that are known to be the most effective,” said Mary Beth Kunkel, dean of the College of Psychology and […]

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Autism News Beat under construction

October 2nd, 2007 · 4 Comments · Housecleaning

Tweet I’ve started this site as a resource for journalists looking for accurate, evidence-based information about autism. I plan to review and comment on print and electronic coverage of autism, and interview journalists, editors, and others to gain their perspectives on this much reported but little understood story. Web development is new to me, and […]

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