The other day when I was sitting down and watching an episode of The Big Bang Theory, I wondered how accurate all the facts and references to science were in the show. I wondered if these shows lack real evidence-based, scientific facts and are actually misleading their viewers with false information. This subject was also touched on a few days ago in my Psych 105 class. We spoke briefly about how the media, if they are not careful, can spread false or very poorly concluded “facts” about the world and claim it is “science.”
After searching for a good article on the subject, I came across THIS. This article is about three individuals whose jobs are to keep television shows scientifically accurate. One of those people is a woman named Donna Cline who is responsible for keeping the show Bones scientifically accurate. She works closely with the writers and actors to ensure that every aspect of the show is up-to-date with current scientific theories, discoveries, and vocabulary.
I learned from the article that some shows are better than other shows when it comes to being scientifically accurate, but ultimately it is entertainment. Entertainment is more likely to sacrifice scientific truth than it is to sacrifice viewers and ratings. Although people like Donna try their best to keep shows informational as much as they are entertaining, she cannot make them perfect. For example, the article previously mentioned says that Bones must stay time-relevant. Some DNA and blood tests can take weeks to get analyzed, but for the sake of speed, they will cut that time out of the show to keep the plot moving and keep their viewers happy. Another example from the article is that the show Bones will have the FBI and the lab analyst interact regularly because they are both friends and main characters on the show. When in real life, those two cogs in the criminal justice machine would never interact that often. In conclusion, I learned that some “facts” on television shows are true and that some are fake, but it is probably smarter to assume the latter without doing any individual investigation on the subject.