A canna’ change the laws of physics

Scotty, The Naked Time, stardate 1704.3, Episode 7

Posts Tagged ‘BBC News’

Happy people, not places

Posted by apgaylard on October 24, 2008

In August, the BBC ran a story claiming that research had determined that some places in Britain were ‘happier’ than others.  You can see the nature of the claims in the TV news report, “Britain’s happiest places mapped“.  There was a big problem with this though: the research found no significant differences between places.  The only differences were accounted for by the socio-economic status of the people

If you read through the on-line version of the story it even pointed this out, eventuallyRead the rest of this entry »

Posted in Science Journalism, Statistics, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | 11 Comments »

BBC editor concedes ‘happiest place’ story is baseless (updated)

Posted by apgaylard on September 5, 2008

[BPSDBThis is just a short post to highlight an interesting discussion that I’ve got into with the BBC’s Health Editor for their News website.  The BBC is carrying an entirely spurious story about the geographical distribution of ‘happiness’ in the UK; both on TV and on-line.

The tell-tale phrase in the on-line article is that, “the researchers stress that the variations between different places in Britain are not statistically significant.”  This appears part way through the piece and entirely scuppers it as a story.  A few ‘bad science’ types have spotted this – notably gimpy – and let the BBC know what they think. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Science Journalism, Statistics | Tagged: , , | 15 Comments »

Good News For Hypercholesterolemic Hamsters

Posted by apgaylard on May 18, 2008

Now I can eat all the burgers I want...On Friday BBC News On-line reported, under the headline “Juice ‘prevents clogged arteries’ ” that, “Juices made from apples or purple grapes – and the fruit themselves – protect against developing clogged arteries, a study suggests.” Is this good news? Well, yes if you are a hypercholesterolemic hamster.  Unfortunately, for those of us who aren’t, this piece provides no way to tell. 

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Science Journalism | Tagged: , , , | 12 Comments »