The Connelly-PI version of anonymous fake news

Seattle has several local news media outlets.  Among them is the seattlepi, which has become an online newspaper.  The  pi has some positive distinctives compared to the news which is also on the radio and tv and it has some flaws.

the pi at times covers stories that others have neglected.

However, it appears that editorial control or fact-checking is sometimes lacking, when it comes to facts that would advance or detract from a political position.

There was recent political controversy about some comments made by a Trump official about on-campus sexual assault.

Joel Connelly wrote a story or a column on the topic.  His story includes this sentence:

In a recent study, cited by Murray, 23.1 percent of female undergraduates at 27 universities said they had experienced sexual assault or misconduct through physical force.

Now, I have written to Connelly asking him to specify which study it is with this number (23.1%) for the prevalence of alleged sexual assault by force.  If I search on the net for 23.1 and sexual assault, the study I come up with is a study commissioned by the AAU and published on their website in 2015.  However, the fact sheet of the AAU published study doesn’t say what Connelly says “it” says.

So, we are being given a number of alleged sexual assault by force rates . . . and neither Joel Connelly nor anyone else at the PI whom I have emailed will inform me what study it is, that says this.

So, is the number a bad distortion of the results of the AAU published study or is it the result of a different study?  We don’t know, cause the PI won’t tell us what study it is with the results being bandied about.

Of course, it is also possible that Patty Murray herself is the source of the error, and that the PI compounds the factual error by making it their own, by speaking as if they have read and are quoting or summarizing “the study.”  Again, however, we don’t know.  What we know is that the PI is relying upon what amounts to unnamed, anonymous studies in order to spread certain ideas about the prevalence of sexual assault by force.

If we read the AAU study, one thing we would find is that the sexual assault as used in the AAU published study includes kissing and groping, items that are irritating, sometimes offensive and at times illegal, do not threaten Western civilization to the same degree as the prevalance of rape.

In case that Connelly is making reference to the AAU published study, without admitting he is doing so, here is the fact sheet of the study.  It simply does not say what Connelly and the PI are saying.

Please note that I have emailed Connelly and his comrades at the PI several times, asking for clarification.  The PI did fix a typo in the article with one of their misspellings, but the PI seems to neither fact-check themselves, nor respond to requests for information or clarification.

I have posted this comment on Friday morning and the PI article has been up since Wednesday sometime or perhaps longer.

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