ABOUT Paige Brown Jarreau

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I am a Bio/Nanotechnology scientist turned journalist, with an M.S. in Biological & Agricultural Engineering. Science is my interest, but writing is my passion. I translate science into story, and my dream is to inspire a love for science in every reader. I am also a new PhD student at the LSU Manship School of Mass Communications, focusing in science communications and policy. I currently conduct research on the communication of science—specifically climate science—to various publics, and I write about all things science on a daily basis. Please feel free to ask me questions anytime, and follow me on Twitter @FromTheLabBench.

I’m always ready for a challenge, and I live to be inspired by science.

 

Paige Brown Jarreau: All Posts

 
 

Reaching 4,000 Twitter Followers… for Science Plus

Posted 26 January 2015 by Paige Brown Jarreau

One of my favorite quotes from a blogger I recently interviewed for my dissertation research describes science blogging as something more than just science: "...it’s science plus. Science plus character, science plus atmosphere, science plus... description." - #MySciBlog Interviewee I realized that this is exactly what Twitter has become for me. It's about science, and science communication, in what I tweet, what I retweet, and who I follow. But it's about so much MORE than science. It's science plus friendship.... Read more

“I wanted to offer people content that they would never, almost never find anywhere else.”

Posted 12 January 2015 by Paige Brown Jarreau

The excerpt copied below from one of #MySciBlog research interviews speaks for itself. It represents a few very common themes in my analysis (so far) of qualitative interviews with science bloggers about their practices and especially their content decisions. One of these themes is the science blog as a place for opinion, interpretation and/or personal commentary. In other words, relatively few science bloggers I've interviewed leave their personal opinions and thoughts out of their blogs. (Some do, and they tend to be... Read more

Hemingway over Faulkner

Posted 9 January 2015 by Paige Brown Jarreau

As a blogger, do you want to write more like William Faulkner, or more like Ernest Hemingway? "[W]hat blogging taught me is to be more immediate and more direct in what I want to write. Maybe it's the difference between Faulkner and Hemingway, I don't know. 'The paper was white, the text was black.' But, I'm more reminded what Kurt Vonnegut said, that he wrote books for people who are very busy and didn't have a lot of time to... Read more

Why Ditching Comment Sections Sucks for Science

Posted 7 January 2015 by Paige Brown Jarreau

Warning: The following contains many opinions. How many different times and ways have we heard the 'to keep or ditch the comments' argument? Online comment sections are good because they provide a venue for open debate. Comment sections are bad because they can change readers' perceptions of the preceding article, news story, blog post, etc. Comment sections are good because they embody a departure from the old broadcast, one-way model of mass communication. Comment sections are bad because of the 9%... Read more

Science Blogging Through Time

Posted 3 January 2015 by Paige Brown Jarreau

"So a lot of times, like I'll write a blog post because something in the media is wrong. Right, like they misrepresented the science, or, they're talking about __ in an incorrect way, or, basically, something has engaged mass public appeal, and the record needs to be corrected, and obviously, everybody's going to be coming running to [my blog], to find out the true answer [sarcastic]. And so, it's really just more of a compulsion, where I'm like, I want to... Read more

A Network of Blogs, Read by Science Bloggers

Posted 28 December 2014 by Paige Brown Jarreau

What would it look like if you asked 600+ science bloggers to list up to three science blogs, other than their own, that they read on a regular basis, and then visually mapped the resulting data? Like this: Update: You can now play with this data via an interactive Gephi graphic here: bit.ly/MySciBlogREAD In #MySciBlog survey of over 600 science bloggers, I asked participants to list up to the top three science blogs, other than their own, that they read on... Read more

Blogging for Science Outreach, Blogging for Myself

Posted 17 December 2014 by Paige Brown Jarreau

A few weeks ago, I blogged about a new paper that came out in Public Understanding of Science on science bloggers’ practices, motivations and target audiences. In the paper, Mathieu Ranger and Karen Bultitude interviewed seven authors of popular science blogs. Among their findings, most of the bloggers they interviewed cited personal motivations to blog about science: “The most commonly reported motivation was intrinsic in nature, relating to personal interests and enjoyment. Blogging was related to a love of science and a love of writing. […] No mention was... Read more

Thoughts about Scientific American Blog Changes

Posted 16 December 2014 by Paige Brown Jarreau

Today, I've been mulling over some of the changes going on within Scientific American's blog network (for a summary of these changes, see Matt Shipman's post here at SciLogs.com). I have many thoughts on the network's new guidelines for bloggers, which I'll probably flesh out in a later post. The public publishing of science blogging guidelines (which until now have been largely unspoken for most blog networks) is relevant to my dissertation research on science blogging practices and content decisions. Without talking to the editors at... Read more

A History of Birds, Crocodilians… and Dinosaurs

Posted 11 December 2014 by Paige Brown Jarreau

It appears that today, thanks to the power of whole genome analysis and as published in Science magazine, we gain a knowledge about the ancient history of birds as never before. “An international team of scientists has completed the largest whole genome study of a single class of animals to date. To map the tree of life for birds, the team sequenced, assembled and compared full genomes of 48 bird species representing all major branches of modern birds including ostrich,... Read more

How has Science Blogging Changed Over the Years?

Posted 6 December 2014 by Paige Brown Jarreau

How has science blogging changed over the years? I asked one science blogger this question recently in one of #MySciBlog research interviews. I think the response is very perceptive. All Sorts of Weird Stuff  "the big thing that’s changed is sort of the, at least from my perspective the big thing that’s changed is kind the nature of the field. When I started blogging in 2001/2002 uh, there was this weird, like absolutely anybody would – there were blogs about... Read more