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Thread: Lame-brained CBS News article about Saturn

  1. #1
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    Lame-brained CBS News article about Saturn

    Check out this one. I don't know whether to laugh or cry.
    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/saturn-...h-a-telescope/
    The author misquoted and dumbed down a good article at Space.com. It could conceivably mislead an uninformed reader into thinking that Saturn has to be at or very near opposition to make the rings visible in a small telescope. I would cheerfully wash her mouth out with soap if I thought I could get away with it.

  2. #2
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    Yeah, it's one of those false-urgency ploys. Buy now! Only a few left!

    It's just a little misleading. After all, it is technically true: Saturn will be so close that you can see its rings with a small scope.


    But in their defense, the ploy has the right motive: if it gets non-science folk off their couch to go find a friend a with a scope and have a look at Saturn, then that's A Good Thing, right?

  3. #3
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    I remember that I could see the rings with my 50 mm refractor long ago. The angle of the rings was more important than the distance involved.

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    I saw a similar article a month or two ago saying that when Jupiter was at opposition it would be SOOO close that you could see its moons with a small telescope. Is this one writer's trick, or is there some style guide about how to excite the uninformed?
    Forming opinions as we speak

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by antoniseb View Post
    I saw a similar article a month or two ago saying that when Jupiter was at opposition it would be SOOO close that you could see its moons with a small telescope. Is this one writer's trick, or is there some style guide about how to excite the uninformed?
    All 79 moons. No kidding, all 79 moons.

    https://www.kron4.com/news/national/...ght/2069160253
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    All 79 moons. No kidding, all 79 moons.

    https://www.kron4.com/news/national/...ght/2069160253
    Bad headline, but the text seems okay and doesn’t really push a “Now and never again!” idea, just “It will be good viewing this month!” I’m totally down with having the later message on mainstream news.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

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    My guess is that you won't even see five moons.

  8. #8
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    At least the writers didn’t say Saturn would appear as large as the moon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    At least the writers didn’t say Saturn would appear as large as the moon.
    I thought the same thing. It's nice to see this annual claim for Mars has subsided, but it ain't August yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore
    All 79 moons. No kidding, all 79 moons.

    https://www.kron4.com/news/national/...ght/2069160253
    Wow! It sure seems like "opposition research" these days is not what it should be.
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    Wow! It sure seems like "opposition research" these days is not what it should be.
    I see what you did there.
    There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.
    — Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi (1883)

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger E. Moore View Post
    I see what you did there.
    Yep, both of those articles were based upon Jupiter then Saturn at opposition. *cough*
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

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    At least she didn't say Saturn would be as big as a full moon.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Superluminal View Post
    At least she didn't say Saturn would be as big as a full moon.
    I'm sure that Saturn would be much bigger than the full moon, or than the moon in any other state for that matter.
    As above, so below

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    It could conceivably mislead an uninformed reader into thinking [...]
    Can't have that!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    that Saturn has to be at or very near opposition to make the rings visible in a small telescope.
    Oh... Well, that's terrible! How will those folks who have that happen to them ever live with themselves afterwards?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    I would cheerfully wash her mouth out with soap if I thought I could get away with it.
    Wanting to assault her with soap and calling her work "lame-brained" over a small mistake, in a work that's actually pretty decent for a non-astronomer content editor, aiming for a very general public, only hoping to get people interested enough to take a look outside.... I think I like reading Caitlin's work better.
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