Scientific studies put under microscope by late night TV

“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” has made a name for itself by dedicating extended time to topics often overlooked by major media outlets. The Sunday night talk show turned its attention to scientific studies in its May 8 program airing on HBO.

Oliver points out numerous problems in the reporting of scientific research. Media often report untrue or incomplete information to attract viewers, readers or listeners. Those in the scientific community can also be to blame, by packaging data or research findings in the most eye-catching if not entirely truthful manner.

“It’s like a game of telephone,” Oliver said. “The substance gets distorted at every step.”

Take a look at the 20-minute segment below.

(One quick note: This segment features mature language.)