I wanted to share a thought-provoking article I read a few weeks ago about the urgency of sharing scientific work with the media. It’s called “Academics: leave your ivory towers and pitch your work to the media.”
The TLDR: Make friends with a journalist/editor! Don’t be offended when they do their job (editing!). Embrace speaking to the public!
Ademo says he would welcome more submissions from scholars. “There’s a lot of research that goes unnoticed,” he says. “It would be great if more academics didn’t shy away from writing for the media and communicating with average people. It would be great if the information came from the source directly.”
This week in speedy plant-related posts, a break from pictures. Instead, I want to recommend a great read from Botanical Accuracy called “Dear New York Times, when will you start to care about taxonomic accuracy?” about the totally horrendous disregard by the NYT for proper naming of species. A brief excerpt:
I think that the sloppiness shown in The New York Times when it comes to morphology and species taxonomy would never be accepted when it comes to historical facts and names related to people. For scientific facts this doesn’t seem to matter to the editors, since fact-checking is lacking and pointed out errors persist and are not even corrected.
It’s great that the author also points out consequences to misnaming and misidentification, such as showing toxic plant pictures under the name of edible ones. This is one of those pieces of scientific advocacy that rarely comes up but is truly important when it comes to proper science communication and outreach.