Getting the story wrong on HIV

Published: September 8, 2010

When I was a kid, we would sometimes play a game called “telephone” that went like this:

…the first player whispers a phrase or sentence to the next player. Each player successively whispers what that player believes he or she heard to the next. The last player announces the statement to the entire group. Errors typically accumulate in the retellings, so the statement announced by the last player differs significantly, and often amusingly, from the one uttered by the first.

Well it seems to me that there is a game of telephone going on in the mainstream (and other) media in which each retelling of the story gets further and further from the truth. The headlines are the most glaringly obvious:

    * The Guardian – September 6: Young gay men fuelling HIV epidemic, study warns
    * Daily News & Analysis – ‎September 7: White homosexual men ’still taking too many HIV risks’
    * Pink News – September 7: ‘Young, white gay men’ are ‘contributing’ to spread of HIV infections in Europe says report
    * UPI – September 8: White gay men take greater HIV risk

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