Meryl: A Guide For Journalists

After Meryl's recent outing at the Queensland Woo Festival, where she lied about all the usual vaccination topics including Shaken Baby Syndrome, decent people everywhere are again appalled at her bad behaviour and also disappointed that credulous, poorly-researched journalists continue to give her media coverage.

It's not many journalists these days, of course. Most of the industry have seen enough of her and learned their lesson. But still, every now and then she slips through and gets a story - which should never happen at this late stage.

To address the problem, the enviously talented Shelley Stocken produced this perfect and funny quick-reference guide to Meryl for the media. Enjoy and then check out her blog; there's a lot more good stuff where this came from!

Disease, False Balance and Meryl Dorey - a Guide for Media

Because her opinion isn't news.

For the benefit of media who think it's worth consulting anti-vaccine lobbyists for "their side" when writing about the serious issue of immunisation, I'd like to suggest a few points, if I may:

  1. Right now in Australia we're battling outbreaks of measles and whooping cough.
  2. Evidence has shown that creating false balance by providing anti-vaccine speakers (who have opinions based on opinions) a platform alongside medical experts (who have opinions based on evidence), makes people give more credence to the anti-vaccine view than if it was presented in isolation.
  3. As I see it, if you include an anti-vaccine lobbyist alongside an expert in a story about vaccination, you are hindering the success of public health initiatives and contributing to the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases.
  4. This:
Who says epidemiologists know nothing of disease?
Who says having eyes to read stuff with trumps medical degrees?
Who says science texts are pharma’s agitprop depository?
Who says doctors murder babies? Yes, it’s (tut, sigh) Meryl Dorey.

Who says people who shake babies aren’t to blame for fractured ribs?
Who says Sudden Infant Death is just a garbage load of fibs?
Who says death from Whooping Cough is just some mother’s made-up story?
Who says measles is a gift? That’s right, it’s (head-desk) Meryl Dorey.

Who says AIDS might not be real because she’s not seen HIV?
Who says foetuses are sold and turned to vaccines secretly?
Who says polio’s still rife, but in a different category?
Who says vaccines cause autism? Same old (face palm) Meryl Dorey.

Who says Meryl Dorey’s incorrect? My state’s HCCC.
Who says Meryl’s claims are bulldust? People at the ABC.
Who says Meryl is misleading? Why, the Office of Fair Trading.
So don’t put her in your story, ‘less your story needs degrading.

meryldorey

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