Masturbation-Prostate Link: eFluxMedia Got It Wrong

It quotes liberally from 5-year-old accounts; "latest study in this field."

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In my last post, I called eFluxMedia on its erroneous coverage of five-year-old medical research. The publication calls itself "an online newspaper that aims to offer a public service. Its main purpose is to inform its readers correctly, impartially, and continually, according to journalistic principles." It reported today that masturbation reduces men's chance of developing prostate cancer. The story is time-stamped "13:40, April 24th, 2008."

The finding it then goes on to describe was reported by other news organization in July of 2003. In fact, eFluxMedia writer Anna Boyd paraphrased a BBC.co.uk report and a New Scientist story and pulled quotes from both of them (with attribution). Oddly, Boyd did not mention the timing of those reports or of the original medical study, referring to it only as the "latest study in this field." As I just reported, that study is no longer the latest study in the field. A very similar finding essentially confirmed the 2003 study the following year.

E-mails addressed to Anna Boyd and sent to several addresses at eFluxMedia.com were not immediately returned; at least one bounced back. A telephone number could not be found on the publication's website. If I hear back, I'll let you know.