Kim Walsh-Childers Comments on Criticism of Pandemic Media Coverage
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Journalism Professor Kim Walsh-Childers was quoted in “White House Voices Frustrations Over Pandemic Media Coverage,” published in The Hill on Aug. 4, 2021.
The article discusses the Biden Administration’s criticism of media coverage of new guidance on masks and COVID-19 breakthrough cases among vaccinated Americans. According to the article, “Media experts say the challenge for some news outlets is accurately conveying the nuance of pandemic science to a frustrated public that’s now being asked to resume mask wearing in some parts of the country and as the delta variant sends cases soaring among the unvaccinated.”
“The public does not generally understand the concept of mutation,” Walsh-Childers said. “Science is not a fixed body of knowledge … but the kinds of stories that really politicize, the kinds of stories that really hype the political conflict over the mask guidance, I fear that really plays into the whole tendency of many people to view the whole thing as a political issue when it’s not.”