The Write Kind of Science
I'm imagining you in your dressing gown. There, I've said it. Nothing untoward, you understand, just a tried and tested writing aid.
A notable science journalist once told me that was how they pictured their readers. Just out of bed, bleary-eyed, a bit confused; in other words, someone in dire need of some mental caffeine.
I'm getting, in a roundabout way, to my point. I was going to blog about Antarctic sea ice this week (I'll try and get back to planet Earth soon), but a discussion on a popular microblogging website pulled me back to last week's thread—the turning of science into news.
On Thursday, a newly discovered oviraptorosaur (you'll know it as the "chicken from hell") was rampaging around the science news sphere. Every big hitter covered it, and it's not hard to see why. It was cool news. But what it wasn't—as prominent palaeo-blogger Jon Tennant (@protohedgehog) pointed out—was important news; new dinosaurs are unearthed all the time.
Even more strange, then, to find that in the same journal (PLoS ONE), on the same day, a truly groundbreaking study had also emerged that went largely unsung.
A Swiss-American team had made a discovery about the rise of life after the end-Permian mass-extinction (concluding that it happened much quicker than was previously thought). Given how close life came to obliteration around this time, anyone with a penchant for existance would surely want to know about that, wouldn't they? The papers didn't think so.
Science vs. Story