Science Media Centre

Science Media Centre


Where is the media going? Prime time for some discussion

Peter Griffin posted in on June 24th, 2016.

by Peter Griffin With the proposed mega mergers between both NZME and Fairfax New Zealand and Sky TV and Vodafone New Zealand currently before the Commerce Commission, it is only too clear that the mainstream media could look a bit different this time next year. In addition to that we have insights into the extent […]

Smoking on NZ television – In the news

John Kerr posted in on June 1st, 2016.

New research highlighting the prevalence of smoking on New Zealand television has been widely covered by the media. Researchers from the University of Otago monitored depictions of tobacco across a week’s worth of free-to-air, prime-time New Zealand television. Comparing the results with a similar study from 2004, the researchers found that there had been little […]

Smoking on NZ television – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on June 1st, 2016.

It might be time to consider an ‘R’ rating for TV shows that depict smoking, say the authors of research showing there has been little change in smoking on our screens over the past decade A new study reports the total number of scenes featuring tobacco on prime-time, free-to-air NZ television across one week and […]

Silencing Science: in the long run, openness is the better strategy

Peter Griffin posted in on May 10th, 2016.

The new book Silencing Science, by University of Auckland physicist Professor Shaun Hendy highlights some recent examples of where scientists have been missing in action when the public needed their knowledge and insights the most. I can personally relate to this. During the Fonterra botulism scare, the 2014 Yersinia outbreak and for periods in the […]

Where is the media going?

Peter Griffin posted in on October 16th, 2015.

How do we ensure a well-informed, civically engaged New Zealand in 2030? That’s the question the Civics and Media Project is setting out to answer as a series of national workshops considers the factors that will underpin the health of the media and of civic engagement in the coming decades. Pressures on the business models underpinning the […]

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Concern over “gagged” scientists – Radio New Zealand

John Kerr posted in on June 22nd, 2015.

Scientists are being pressured by their employers not to speak out on contentions issues, according the New Zealand Association of Scientists (NZAS). Association president Dr Nicola Gaston highlighted the problem on Radio New Zealand this morning, raising the issue in the wake of a poll conducted last year which found many scientists did not feel […]

A lesson for science communicators in Campbell Live demise

Peter Griffin posted in on May 22nd, 2015.

He made it to ten years, and on reflection, he was bloody lucky to get there. The axing of John Campbell’s show and his departure from Mediaworks is a real loss for journalism. But it points to a larger shift in viewing habits and tastes of TV viewers who, we are told, are getting their […]

Science animation and video workshops – apply now!

Peter Griffin posted in on March 13th, 2015.

The SMC is bringing its science animation workshop to Auckland and will also head to Christchurch to explore how scientists can harness short videos to communicate their science. These free one-day workshops aim to give scientists and science communicators skills to harness off the shelf tools to create short animations and videos showcasing science concepts in innovative, […]

Scientists – our newsrooms need you!

Peter Griffin posted in on January 12th, 2015.

Back in 2008 when we set up the Science Media Centre, there were hardly any journalists with a science background in newsrooms and the science round in general was in decline. Nearly seven years on, the situation has changed for the better. The Dominion Post and The Press both have weekly science pages and the […]

Bad media releases to blame for media’s exaggerated reporting of health findings – experts respond

Peter Griffin posted in on December 10th, 2014.

A study by UK and Australian scientists published today in the BMJ has found that, in many cases, badly composed university media releases may be at the root of exaggerated health claims made in the mainstream media. They found* that 40 per cent of university press releases contained exaggerated advice, 33 per cent contained exaggerated […]

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