Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Hard and Soft Research or Arguing with your Relatives

The holidays typically mean time with family and friends. This togetherness does not always resemble a Hallmark Holiday movie. When you get a group of adults together and conversation is flowing, you can have quite a mix of opinions and viewpoints. Some enjoy a friendly discussion/debate, some get very passionate, which can lead to tempers lost, hurt feelings and a line through your name for the next family get together.

I bring this up because of a heated discussion on hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” that was brought up over the Thanksgiving holiday. The “passionate” person in this debate accused the other party of only listening to propaganda. However, turns out Mr. Passionate was getting his information off the Internet. I know, right? Clearly no propaganda is on the Internet. Mr. Passionate was not a teenager either, but a man of a certain age, who one might think would know better.  Every side of every topic is available for you on the Internet. Is it all credible? No.  If you would like to be well informed about matters, especially matters that involve scientific and objective research where facts and measurable evidence are essential, then hard research is required and you need to be using authoritative sources. If you need info on a soft news topic (fashion, celebrity twitter wars, or other subjective and/or cultural topic) than the Internet and social media is a great place. If you are a member of this library, you have access to hundreds of journals, magazines, newspapers, all for free. We have access to more sources than our parents had, and we should take advantage.
Go here: to see the various resources available. 

If you would like to research “fracking”, I recommend going to the News/Current Events tab, or Gale Powersearch w/ keyword “hydraulic fracturing” or any term you’d like, or General academic and choose one of the databases.

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Happy Holidays!