A post on RealClimate identifies some problematic aspects of science reporting, such as how the media preference for new and surprising information means that spectacular and unreproduced studies can get more attention than those that have been carefully examined and replicated:
The more mature and solid a field, the less controversy there is, and thus the fewer news stories. Ironically, this means the public is told the least about the most solid aspects of science.
The whole post is worth reading.
The consequences of this tendency are probably pretty serious. For one thing, it makes science seem less credible than it otherwise would. One day, scientists say red wine is good for you, the next day they seem to say something else. We would all be better off if the most authoritative studies, such as the work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change or the systemic reviews undertaken by the Cochrane Collaboration, were represented as such in the mainstream media, as well as if individual unconfirmed studies were described with an appropriate focus on methodology, and an awareness that those studies which are new, surprising, and contradict well-established hypotheses are often later shown to be incorrect or of limited application or importance.
I also like the rule of thumb the post attributed to Richard Feynman: “the last data point on any graph should be discounted because, if it had been easy to obtain, there would have been another one further along.”