Thursday, February 24, 2005

Whittling away at Good Will

The MIT picked up The Associated Press story on the legal moves by a couple of conservative groups to shutter the California stem cell agency. Nothing unusual about that, but it carried a side note from an editor on the web site.

"The move to fund stem cell research in California has become a political hornet's nest for the biggest blue state on the map," said Brad King.
"The group has done little to endear itself to the public either, with a series of gaffe's out of the gate that may have undermined its credibility. There are 124 media outlets following this lawsuit story, and a score of other small stories about the group -- very few detailing actual science. Most are stories about external groups fighting with the stem cell board."

Once again we see the impact of a story that has national distribution, in this case Paul Elias' piece. King overstates the matter somewhat. The 124 outlets are not "following" the story. They are receiving and distributing it by automated feeds. He also overstates the impact on the public. This is still a low profile issue with your average Nicolaus and Nikkie. Nonetheless, the distribution of the AP story is vast and does not well serve the stem cell agency. Public good will is being whittled away.
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