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Spiders have an unfortunate media presence.蜘蛛有不幸的媒体存在。 No number of studies emphasising their ecological value or the potential of their silks to inspire wonder materials can overcome the negative press.没有大量研究强调其生态价值或丝绸激发灵感的潜力,这些研究可以克服负面影响。 The more emotive and sensational the coverage, the more likely it is to travel.报道越感性和轰动,旅行的可能性就越大。

Although the proportion of spider species capable of giving humans a bad bite is very small, and no known deaths have occurred in recent decades, we retain a fear.尽管能够给人类带来不良咬伤的蜘蛛物种的比例很小,而且近几十年来没有发生已知的死亡事件,但我们仍然感到恐惧。 We tend to exaggerate the risk from spider bites, even in countries with no indigenous dangerous spiders, such as the UK.即使在没有本土危险蜘蛛的国家(例如英国),我们也会夸大蜘蛛咬伤的风险。 There is always the apocryphal arachnid lurking总是有隐匿性蛛网膜潜伏 在马桶底下或恐慌 假寡妇蜘蛛 感染了 封闭学校.

随着秋天的到来,有关 多情的 蜘蛛屋你的手的大小” invading homes to find somewhere warm and dry to mate and die.入侵的房屋在温暖干燥的地方交配而死。 It happens every year, but the media's insistence on turning this small arachnid's breeding season into an annual spectacle could be doing more than selling papers.每年都会发生这种情况,但媒体坚持将这种小型蜘蛛的繁殖季节变成一年一度的盛会,可能比卖出报纸做得更多。 一项新的研究 来自意大利的人士暗示,这可能会加剧原发性恐惧症,否则本来就不存在。



They found 314 media reports of spider encounters in Italy between 2010 and 2020 – the majority being Mediterranean black widows or recluses.他们发现XNUMX家媒体在XNUMX年至XNUMX年之间在意大利遭遇了蜘蛛,其中大部分是地中海黑寡妇或隐居者。 The reach of each article was measured by the number of shares on social media, along with any errors such as species misidentification or incorrect medical advice.每篇文章的影响范围均由社交媒体上的分享数量以及任何错误(例如物种识别错误或医疗建议不正确)来衡量。 The team counted the use of certain words, such as “devil, "terror” or “panic”, to rate how each story sensationalised the encounter.该团队计算了某些单词(例如“魔鬼”,“恐怖”或“恐慌”)的使用情况,以评估每个故事如何引起人们的轰动。

They found that media reports of spider attacks have increased in recent years, especially for the Mediterranean recluse.他们发现,近年来有关蜘蛛袭击的媒体报道有所增加,特别是对于地中海隐居者。 The rise coincided with a single report of该上升与单个报告有关 骨质疏松症 –在欧洲被蜘蛛咬伤而导致的深层溃疡和皮肤坏死–在欧洲,还有一部意大利谋杀神秘小说,其中以地中海隐居者的毒液为谋杀武器。


The spider species in the loxoscelism case was never definitively identified, but newspaper coverage of the Mediterranean recluse spiked nonetheless after the case was reported.尚未明确确定狼吞虎咽病例中的蜘蛛种类,但在报道该病例后,报纸对地中海隐士的报道仍然激增。 Both the mysterious bite and the murder novel featured often in the increasing number of newspaper reports about these spiders.报纸上有关这些蜘蛛的报道越来越多,神秘的咬人和谋杀小说都经常出现。 The press had found a compelling narrative to weave between a rare medical event and a well-timed work of fiction.媒体发现了一种引人入胜的叙述,可以在一次罕见的医疗事件和一部适时的小说作品之间进行编织。 Suddenly, recluse spiders weren't so reclusive.突然之间,隐居蜘蛛并没有那么隐蔽。

Stories that shared more recent and startling encounters travelled further.分享了更多最近和令人震惊的故事的故事走得更远。 This isn't surprising, the viral spread of content is greater if it provokes intense这不足为奇,如果内容激起激烈,内容的病毒传播就会更大 喜悦,恐惧或焦虑。 But the emotional contagion, as the team put it, helps drive up the perceived risk from spider attack, creating unreasonable hostility towards arachnids.但是,正如团队所说的那样,情绪上的传染有助于提高人们从蜘蛛攻击中所感知到的风险,从而对蜘蛛产生不合理的敌意。


尽管保护了蜘蛛,但蜘蛛在保护方面经常被忽视 农场上的虫害 并在食物网中扮演重要角色 捕食者和猎物。 It won't help if their media profile is largely driven by overhyped stories about “devilish” attacks and life-threatening venom.如果他们的媒体形象在很大程度上被过分夸大的有关“不断变化的”攻击和威胁生命的毒液所驱使,这将无济于事。 The researchers go so far as to accuse some journalists of sensationalising their stories at the expense of blameless wildlife.研究人员甚至指责一些记者以牺牲无罪的野生生物为代价来煽动他们的故事。

Spiders are easy targets for scaremongering, but there are ways to improve their reputation.蜘蛛很容易成为吓人的目标,但是有一些方法可以提高它们的声誉。 After all, some lovable spiders are cherished in popular culture.毕竟,在流行文化中珍惜一些可爱的蜘蛛。 I defy anyone to watch Charlotte's Web without sobbing.我无视任何人不抽泣地观看夏洛特的网路。

Natural history documentaries seem to have seized on a candidate for improving the public image of spiders.自然史纪录片似乎抓住了候选人,以改善蜘蛛的公众形象。 If you see a cute spider feature on TV, it's almost always a jumping spider.如果您在电视上看到可爱的蜘蛛功能,则几乎总是跳跃的蜘蛛。 Furry, not so long-legged and with a large pair of eyes, it's as if they're designed to dispel the idea that all spiders are sinister.毛茸茸的,没有那么长的腿,有一双大眼睛,就好像它们旨在消除所有蜘蛛都是险恶的想法一样。

顺便说一句,根据英国广播公司(BBC)儿童服务测验显示,我是一只跳跃的蜘蛛 你是什​​么样的蜘蛛.

On the whole, spiders in films terrorise small American towns, but seldom trouble Italy.总体而言,电影中的蜘蛛会威胁美国的小城镇,但很少困扰意大利。 Nonetheless, Italian spiders suffering at the hands of hype enjoy some revenge in 2014's尽管如此,遭受炒作之苦的意大利蜘蛛还是在XNUMX年代报仇 杀螨剂。 “糟糕的意大利电影院”的“真正欢乐”景象, 阅读一篇评论.谈话


Mike Jeffries,生态学副教授, 诺桑比亚大学,纽卡斯尔

本文重新发表 谈话 根据知识共享许可。 阅读 原创文章.





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