Dr. Tsubokura's Radiation Lecture Vol.121

Author: Masaharu Tsubokura M.D., PhD.

Editors: Akihiko Ozaki M.D., PhD., Yuki Senoo


241. Collect information in a balanced manner

 In addition to traditional news media (such as newspapers, TV, and radio), we now obtain information through the Internet and through SNS (social networking services). Each information medium has its own characteristics. For example, television is a visual medium but newspapers communicate through writing. Similarly, the Internet and SNS have advantages and disadvantages.


    The previous article explained two major characteristics of information on the Internet and SNS: the speed of information transmission and the diversity of topics. In addition, the previous article discussed how the Internet and SNS show people only information they already agree with or information that is familiar. Newspapers and television are news media through which information flows in one direction—one-way media. Meanwhile, we enter our own search words on the Internet, and we can choose whom we interact with on SNS.


 With Internet access expanding worldwide, the amount of information we can access has increased by many orders of magnitude compared to the past. Thus, it has become difficult to get a balanced view of all of the available information while becoming easier to collect convenient fragments of information.


 When searching for information on radiation, you must know each news medium’s advantages and disadvantages to efficiently gather credible information from various sources.



242 Significant impact of celebrities’ opinions on the general public

 In addition to traditional news media (such as newspapers, TV, and radio), we now obtain information through the Internet and through SNS. Each information medium has its own characteristics. For example, television is a visual medium but newspapers communicate through writing. Similarly, the Internet and SNS have advantages and disadvantages.



 The previous article addressed important characteristics of information from the Internet and SNS: A wide variety of information is available, but we tend to focus on acceptable or familiar opinions. This may yield only biased information.


 Another characteristic of SNS is that you are more likely to find opinions from celebrities and other influential people than from ordinary people.


 In a SNS such as Twitter, people share their own opinions and opinions from other people they agree with. Thus, the opinions of influential individuals, such as celebrities, are repeatedly shared and overly amplified. In fact, the opinions (tweets) of 100 celebrities accounted for approximately 40% of information circulated on Twitter regarding radiation. This result indicates the opinions of influential celebrities have more impact on SNS than do other accounts.


 When obtaining information on radiation, be sure you know each news medium’s characteristics and deal with the obtained information appropriately.




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The Japanese version of the manuscript was originally published in Fukushima Minyu, a local newspaper in Fukushima prefecture, Japan, 25th of August and 1st of September 2019 was reproduced for MRIC Global under the author's permission.

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