The American Accounting Association press release bandwagon has hit again! A young author team eager for recognition of their work okays a press release that is a great overstatement of what they report in the actual article!
1. Incentives of the publicity person – get coverage in media. To heck with accuracy as long as it is correct from a 30000 foot level (a little less than 10000 m)
2. Incentives of author – recognition for research impact.
The most populist interpretation possible of the article’s results! Any nuance is lost! But it gets great coverage.
While it is tough to do, it is the responsibility of the academic authors to ensure that the conclusion they reached in the article is reflected in the press release! Using the old Nancy Regan quote, it is okay to Just Say No!
I have consistently advised the powers that be that their hiring an “expert” and then leaving it to the authors to deal with the PR guy will at some point lead to a great black eye for the AAA. It has not happened yet, but it will. You read it here first!