Wednesday, September 25, 2013

"Shut Up, He Explained"

Just ahead of the release of the IPCC's report, Popular Science terminates comments on its articles. The editor tells us:

Comments can be bad for science. That's why, here at PopularScience.com, we're shutting them off.

Of course, that is the exact opposite of the scientific method.

The scientific community provides a system of checks and balances that ensures the quality of scientific work, double-checks arguments, and makes sure that ideas are evaluated fairly. This scrutiny can serve a few different functions — from fact-checking to whistleblowing:

Fact checker/critic
The community evaluates evidence and ideas. Scientists describe their work at conferences, in journalarticles, and in books. By disseminating their ideas, study methods, and test results in these ways, scientists allow other community members to check their work, both by reviewing what has been done and trying to replicate all or part of it. This helps to ensure thatevidence meets high standards, that all relevant lines of evidence are explored, that judgments are not based on flawed reasoning, and hence, that science moves in the direction of more and more accurate explanations.


"Scrutiny." "Scientists allow other community members to check their work." "Reviewing."

Seems like Popular Science doesn't understand what science is all about. 

2 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Try again... Popular Science is a legacy content provider struggling to deal with the reality of 21st century social media. They apparently also believe that investing in a moderating process does not provide value.

    Or they are ready to jump wholeheartedly into Big Green's arms. :)

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