Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Shadow of a Doubt - April 2015

The Monthly Calendar of the National Capital Area Skeptics
  • April 4 NCAS Lecture: You Mean They're Not True? Busting media myths, Joseph Campbell, PhD Professor, School of Communication
  • NCAS YouTube Channel
  • NCAS Board Elections: Electronic Voting
  • AmazonSmile
  • Shadow Light
  • Apr 8 Drinking Skeptically in MD and  VA (New Start Time!)
  • Time to Renew?

NCAS Public Lecture Series

You Mean They're Not True?
Busting media myths Joseph Campbell, PhD
Professor, School of Communication

American University
Saturday, April 4, 1:30pm - 4:00pm
Bethesda Regional Library
7400 Arlington Road
Bethesda, MD [map] [directions]
(Bethesda Metro station)
FREE admission – Everyone welcome, members and non-members

In this talk, communications professor, author, and blogger W. Joseph Campbell debunks prominent media-driven myths – those well-known stories about and/or by the news media that are widely believed and often retold but which, under scrutiny, dissolve as apocryphal or wildly exaggerated.

These myths include the hero-journalist interpretation of Watergate, the famous "Cronkite Moment" of 1968, and the myth of superlative reporting in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, all of which are addressed in Campbell's book, Getting It Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism (University of California Press, 2010).

Getting It Wrong won the Society of Professional Journalists' 2010 Sigma Delta Chi Award for "Research about Journalism."

W. Joseph Campbell is a tenured full professor in the School of Communication at American University. He joined the University's faculty in 1997 after more than 20 years as a newspaper and wire service journalist.

Refreshments and socializing after the talk.

NCAS YouTube Channel
Missed an NCAS lecture?  Catch it on the NCAS YouTube Channel!

Recently added:
The Calculus of Calories: Quantitative Obesity Research

Are Genetically Modified Foods Safe to Eat? (Science of Genetic Engineering)

Ghosts, Elves, & the Man from Mars: Two Decades of (Skeptically) Investigating the Paranormal

Threats to Validity: What You Should Know to Interpret Research Findings

NCAS Board Elections: Electronic Voting
The upcoming 2015 NCAS election will use electronic voting.  When voting begins, each member will receive an email from NCAS (via containing a unique web address usable as a single-cast secret ballot.  (NCAS will receive information indicating who voted, but nothing to indicate who cast each ballot.)

Note that voters will not be at risk for spamming as a result of participating...SurveyMonkey has a zero-tolerance spam policy:

AmazonSmile: Shop at and support NCAS!
When you shop at you'll find the same low prices, vast selection, and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that a portion of the purchase price goes to NCAS! It's simple and automatic, and it doesn't cost you anything!

For more information:

Shadow Light
Some members and contacts of NCAS receive a postal notification of this and every new monthly Shadow of a Doubt.  The Shadow Light postcard announces the monthly lecture and highlights of the electronic Shadow of a Doubt, which is available online at  NCAS thereby reduces Shadow production and postage costs.  To further reduce costs, members and contacts can opt out of postal notification altogether, while continuing to receive Shadow of a Doubt via e-mail.  To opt out, send us an e-mail at

Drinking Skeptically in MD and  VA (New Start Time)!

On Wednesday, April 8 at 6:30 p.m., please join fellow NCASers at either of our simultaneous DC-area Drinking Skeptically events:

Drinking Skeptically Bottle
                          Cap Logo
Jackie's Sidebar
8081 Georgia Avenue (entrance on Sligo Avenue) in Silver Spring, MD

The Front Page Arlington
                               Rear patio / National Science Foundation atrium
                               4201 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA
                               across from Ballston Common Mall
                               (703) 248-9990

The most recent Washingtonian magazine list of the best DC-area bars (2013) includes Jackie's Sidebar: "Insider tip: Sop up the spirits with some of the best bar snacks around. We love the Chicago-style dog and grilled-seaweed-sprinkled popcorn."

Drinking Skeptically is an informal social event designed to promote fellowship and networking among skeptics, critical-thinkers, and like-minded individuals. There's no cover charge and all are welcome. Don't drink? Don't let that stop you from joining us! Some of the world's most famous skeptics are teetotalers, and we are happy to have you! Remember that drinking skeptically means drinking responsibly. If there's one thing science has taught us, it's the effects of alcohol on the human body.

Time to Renew?
Be sure to check your renewal date above your postal address on the Shadow Light postcard. Send any queries to  Use the online membership form to renew.

Past issues of Shadow of a Doubt