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Scientific and Mass Media Writing Comparison


Understanding the differences between genres and their purposes is critical in writing, as it helps distinguish between the writing styles and figurative language (Wardle & Downs 5). Mass media reporting and scientific researches tend to use various means of expression to deliver the message to the audience. To support the existence of difference and similarities, the two pieces of literature of the different genres such as The 3.8 A Resolution Cryo-EM Structure of Zika Virus by Sirohi, Chen, Sun, Klose, Pierson, Rossmann, and Kuhn and Zika Structure Discovered, Raising Hopes for New Ways to Combat Virus by Davis are compared.

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In this case, the overall analysis will evaluate the differences and similarities in the target audience, genres, tone, sources, and the presentation of the contradictory evidence in the texts. A combination of these matters will help highlight the primary strengths and weaknesses of these types of publications and reveal the novelty of the scientific writing principles. In the end, the conclusions will summarize the key findings of the paper.

Differences and similarities: Audience and genre

Firstly, both of the articles display the scientific breakthrough, which reveals the possible structure of the Zika virus (Davis par. 1; Sirohi et al. 467). However, these readings use different genres and figurative instruments to address the topic. This difference is determined by the target audience, as the scientific report tends to be dry and highly focuses on facts, diagrams, and statistical information (Sirohi et al. 467).

Its strict writing style is filled with terms and numbers to comply with the needs of the target audience. The clear structure and the absence of emotion make this type of publication popular in the scientific circles, as it presents the topic profoundly and avoids personal bias and judgments in the text.

The objectivity could be observed as one of the primary benefits of the writing style. On the contrary, the mass media piece of literature (accommodation) has different intentions, as it tends to deliver the audience to the masses. In this case, the text is easy to understand, and its emotionality gives people hope that the cure for the virus was found (Davis par. 1). The accommodation could be viewed as a mediator between the scientists and the audience, but its subjectivity is the primary drawback, as it might interpret the findings differently.

Comparison of mass media tone and changes to a scientific article

Meanwhile, in comparison to the original scientific article, the mass media message uses strong claims such as “Zika structure discovered” (Davis par. 1). This aspect identifies that this discovery is a clear path to the development of the vaccine to Zika. Whereas, the scientific article states the understanding of the structure will help to evaluate the structure of the virus and its pathogenesis (Sirohi et al. 467).

It does not highly rely on the positive projections, but it depicts that medical researchers are moving in the right direction to decrease the spread of the virus. It could be said that that the mass media article summarized the primary findings of the scholarly study and prioritized its principal claim as the most important component while avoiding the nuances. Conversely, the original scientific article emphasized the importance of details and numbers, as it assists in designing the steps of future research.

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Sources of original science report and evidence

As for the sources, the accommodation tends to rely on various mass media publications, which support the findings of the paper by facts and referring to the interviews with the scientists (Davis par. 1). Meanwhile, some names of the researchers, who did not participate in the study, were used to underline the strength of the claim and give hope to the target audience. These changes help eliminate the level of uncertainty and justify that the presented findings are relevant.

In contrast, scientific researchers cherish all outcomes as equally important since they can assist in finding an appropriate solution in the future. In this instance, the article is mainly supported by the theories, scientific publications, and peer-reviewed publications (Sirohi et al. 467). The differences described above reveal that contrasting intentions of the literature pieces make them use different sources as references. Furthermore, this finding reveals new insight into scientific writing, as it emphasizes that objectivity is the most important component despite the presence of controversies in the outcomes.

Representation of contradictory evidence

Another important factor for comparison is the representation of the contradictory evidence in the text, as a scientific article and mass media report address this aspect differently. As was mentioned earlier, the mass media publication tends to use clear claims, as it will help eliminate the development of doubt in society. Using quotes from the scientists such as “the structure is a powerful platform for designing those kinds of preventative and therapeutic strategies” helps create a viewpoint that the medicine and healthcare are progressing in a positive direction (Davis par. 1).

These instruments diminish the contradictory evidence from the text and give people hope. Regardless of the positive intentions of mass media, the original scientific article views the uncertainties as an opportunity for future research. For instance, the authors state that “this region may also be important for attachment to cellular lectin receptors” (Davis par. 1). This statement highlights that this variable requires profound analysis and testing before finding a suitable resolution. It could be said that the primary goal of the scholar research is to propose a relevant solution to the issue. Consequently, the relevance of the findings is of paramount importance, and this feature makes scientific research a unique piece of writing.

Scientist’s response to the accommodation

Speaking of scientist’s response to the findings portrayed in the accommodation, it could be considered as positive. The primary reason for this outcome is the fact that the researchers of the scientific approved the relevance of the positive development in the medical sphere to prevent the Zika virus on the university’s webpage and YouTube video (“Researchers Reveal Zika Virus Structure” par. 1).

Additionally, the subsequent mass media articles were published, and they displayed the progress in the vaccine development and testing (Glenza par. 1). It could be stated that these publications underline the relevance of the findings portrayed in the mass media publication. Despite the avoidance of details, the editing crew of the Guardian was able to deliver the right message to the audience.


All things considered, it could be claimed that scientific and mass media writing has some similarities, as they aim at delivering the findings to the targeted audience. Notwithstanding, these kinds of publications use different language instruments and genres to address the findings. It remains apparent that mass media uses easy-to-understand language and avoids controversial terms, and this feature is the primary benefit of this kind of publication that delivers a clear message to its targeted audience. It could be said that it plays the role of the mediator between the scientists and the general public.

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However, the primary limitation of this writing genre is the fact that it might create confusion and develop the wrongful attitudes about the discovery among the population. Unlike the accommodation, the scientific article uses facts and details to support its outcomes while considering the controversial results as a basis for future research. However, despite its clarity, the results and findings of the research could be misinterpreted, as specific vocabulary is required to understand the results and methodology of the study.

Works Cited

Davis, Nicola. “Zika Structure Discovered, Raising Hopes for New Ways to Combat Virus.” The Guardian. 2016. Web.

Glenza, Jessica. “Human Testing of Experimental Zika vaccine to begin.” The Guardian. 2016. Web.

Researchers Reveal Zika Virus Structure. 2016. Web.

Sirohi, Devika, Zhenguo Chen, Lei Sun, Thomas Klose, Theodore Pierson, Michael Rossmann, and Richard Kuhn. “The 3.8 A Resolution Cryo-EM Structure of Zika Virus.” Science 352.6284 (2006): 467-470.

Wardle, Elizabeth, & Douglas Downs. Writing about Writing: A College Reader. New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2010. Print.

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