Last week the Daily Californian published what can only be described as a poorly researched tuna scare story. The report came complete with suggestions that an out-of-date, eco-activist study about mercury levels in tuna from Ecuador somehow translated into a health concern for students eating in the University of California, Berkeley dinning hall.
We brought these inaccuracies and transgressions to the attention of the paper’s editors and challenged them to set the record straight. On Sunday they published 350 words of our challenge that highlighted the article’s failures in sourcing and accuracy.
This is a good example of how holding the media accountable isn’t just about whether we agree or disagree with a story; it’s about whether what they print is fair, accurate and objective. The Daily Californian adheres to the Society of Professional Journalist's (SPJ) code of ethics which insists that, “Journalists should: Clarify and explain news coverage and invite dialogue with the public over journalistic conduct.”
After our dialogue with the Californian its editors allowed us to help clarify and explain— setting the record straight on this latest tuna scare story.