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2020-12-08 | J++ Newsletter #103
How should we communicate uncertainty? Does it undermine our audiences’ trust when we admit we don’t quite know what the answer is? A new study has found the answer is no:

“Communicating uncertainty numerically only exerted a minor effect on trust. Knowing this should allow academics and science communicators to be more transparent about the limits of human knowledge.”

New ways of covering covid-19

After a year of wall-to-wall coronavirus coverage, you could be forgiven for thinking, what possible angle could still be left unexplored? But a Twitter thread from Kate Petrova caught our eye: a clever data-driven look at scented candles, an unexpected victim of the pandemic.

Swedish public service broadcaster Sveriges Radio have also done a nifty analysis, using drones to answer the question: how did this year’s Black Friday crowds compare to usual?

And Rappler has used satellite data to show how the effects of covid-19 lockdowns can be seen from space.


Who said it first in the UK House of Commons? This tool built by Giuseppe Sollazzo uses Hansard data to find out when a word or phrase was first used.

Events and awards 

Applications are now open for this year’s Sigma Awards. New for this year: there are no categories! Judges just want your best data journalism, full stop.

And finally, we’ve got some online talks of our own coming up over the next week:

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Journalism++ Stockholm · ℅ Internetstiftelsen i Sverige · Hammarby Kaj 10D · Stockholm 12032 · Sweden

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