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22nd of November 2017

Science



Randomizing the news for science, transplanting genetically engineered skin, and the ethics of experimental brain implants

a crocodile

Chad Sparkes/Flickr

This week we hear stories on what to do with experimental brain implants after a study is over, how gene therapy gave a second skin to a boy with a rare epidermal disease, and how bone markings thought to be evidence for early hominid tool use may have been crocodile bites instead, with Online News Editor Catherine Matacic.

Sarah Crespi interviews Gary King about his new experiment to bring fresh data to the age-old question of how the news media influences the public. Are journalists setting the agenda or following the crowd? How can you know if a news story makes a ripple in a sea of online information? In a powerful study, King’s group was able to publish randomized stories on 48 small and medium sized news sites in the United States and then track the results. 

Listen to previous podcasts.

[Image: Chad Sparkes/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

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