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Articles by Curtis Brainard | Email the Author

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Don’t pick up!

RFK, Jr. talks journalists’ ears off with his vaccine conspiracy theory

Check your caller ID. If you're a reporter who has criticized Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. for spouting nonsense about vaccines... More

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Crop cop

Keith Kloor makes a beat out of policing frightful coverage of GMOs

The media have stoked irrational distrust of science in many fields over the years, from vaccines to climate change. But... More

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Journalistic generalization disorder

David Brooks attacks, then defends, psychiatry’s shortcomings

On Monday, David Brooks weighed in on the debate about the merits of the latest edition of the DSM-5, psychiatry's... More

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When a journalist calls [Updated]

Ed Yong counsels scientists on giving comments to reporters

[Original post, May 28, 5pm] There is no shortage of advice for scientists on talking to journalists. Just look at... More

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Under the bridge

Climate Desk tracks down its ‘most pernicious’ troll

Frustrating as they may be, every journalist wonders at some point about the identity of his or her most devoted... More

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A bogus boycott

The GOP hijacks the transparency debate as the EPA calls for a ‘reset’ with reporters

At Gina McCarthy's congressional confirmation hearing in early April, questions about transparency at the Environmental Protection Agency, which she'd been... More

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Little green in Arab Spring

Egypt Independent’s closure a blow for environmental coverage

Last month's closure of the Egypt Independent, a weekly newspaper and website, was a setback for progressive journalism in the... More

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A new ‘golden era’?

Nautilus is the latest in a proliferation of science-news sites

Nautilus, a new science magazine whose first issue appeared online April 29, has New York Times reporter Dennis Overbye, one... More

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Finding James Foley

GlobalPost tracked down its missing reporter in Syria—now to bring him home

After 162 days with no information about his whereabouts, GlobalPost announced Friday that James Foley, an American journalist who went... More

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Reinventing Audubon

Mark Jannot to craft new content, communications strategy

There's new vigor at the 108-year-old National Audubon Society, a nonprofit environmental group focused on birds, which is in the... More

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Sticking with the truth

How ‘balanced’ coverage helped sustain the bogus claim that childhood vaccines can cause autism

In 1998, The Lancet, one of the most respected medical journals, published a study by lead author Andrew Wakefield,... More

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Who’s covering local climates?

A new, interactive map from the Earth Journalism Network has details

Want to know more about how the climate is changing in your area, and who's writing about it? On Earth... More

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Earth Day ennui

Google doodle dominates coverage of the environmental holiday

It's a bad sign when the biggest news on Earth Day is an animated Google doodle of nature, wherein a... More

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Disaster science

Articles about explosives, surveillance, and prosthetics followed tragedies in Boston, Texas

As is often the case after bombings and explosions, a steady stream of science stories seeking to explain the mechanics... More

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InsideClimate wins a Pulitzer

Five-year-old news site honored for exposé of Michigan oil spill

On Monday, InsideClimate News, a five-year-old investigative news outlet that is based in Brooklyn, but doesn't even have an office,... More

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McCarthy faces transparency questions

Journalists, GOP demand more openness at EPA

Journalists and the GOP called for more transparency at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) this week, as Gina McCarthy, the... More

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Keystone XL road trip

New ebook from TED Books and The Washington Post takes readers down the pipeline’s proposed path

In June 2012, a team from The Washington Post, including energy reporter Steven Mufson, photographer Michael Williamson, and videographer Whitney... More

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Q&A: NewYorker.com editor Nicholas Thompson

On the site’s new science and technology section and blog

On Tuesday, The New Yorker launched a science and technology page on its website, along with a companion blog called... More

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HeLa-cious coverage

Media overlook ethical angles of Henrietta Lacks story

A New York Times bestseller about the most widely used human cell line in biological research has inspired wide-ranging debates... More

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‘The Finkbeiner Test’

Seven rules to avoid gratuitous gender profiles of female scientists

There's still a gender gap in the sciences, with far fewer women than men in research jobs, and those women... More

How Forbes got to $475 million - That’s what a Hong Kong investor has agreed to pay for a firm that two years ago had trouble paying its rent

Are female journalists up to the job of a Jill Abramson interview? - Reporters avoid unflattering discussion about her firing

How to check if that viral video is true - Journalists don’t always verify user-generated content, so readers need to learn how to verify what they see online

The Grand Dame of Florida reporting has retired twice, but she’s still causing trouble - A conversation with the Tampa Bay Times’ Lucy Morgan

Brick by brick - After years of shrinking ambition at The Washington Post, Jeff Bezos has the paper thinking global domination


Insufferable parenthetical asides, ranked (The Hairpin)

18. (strictly for the mise-en-scene)

You are now entering the demented kingdom of William T. Vollmann (TNR)

“Franzen tells a hilarious story of being a young writer in New York, meeting Vollmann, becoming fast friends, and inaugurating a draft swap. A while later, they exchanged work. Franzen gave Vollmann a dozen chiseled pages. Vollmann gave Franzen an entire novel.”

39 pieces of advice for journalists and writers of color (BuzzFeed)

“Make yourself indispensable. Dispel any rumors, however quiet, that you are just there for a ‘quota’”

Bloggingheads

Greg Marx discusses democracy and news with Tom Rosenstiel of the American Press Institute

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Who Owns What

The Business of Digital Journalism

A report from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism

Study Guides

Questions and exercises for journalism students.