Monday, November 19, 2012

Media Consumption 11/12/12-11/18/12

Curating links from last week. But before you do any reading, watch this PSA on train safety, because it completely cracked me up. Perhaps a little morbid, but a really interesting example of how to get someone's attention. This song has been stuck in my head all day.

Cancer Pick
Move Over Movember – problems with the global campaign Gary Schwitzer for
Since it is November aka moustache month, it’s a good time to think critically about what awareness campaigns (in this case for Men’s health and prostate cancer) really accomplish, and what role journalists play in supporting or participating in them. Personally I know several guys growing moustaches who aren’t doing anything for prostate cancer, some because they don’t know what to do and some because they just want an excuse to rock a moustache. This post also raises some good points about the necessity for informed screening, especially in prostate cancer where screening is often associated with unnecessary treatments.

Science Pick
Mummy Proteins Tell A Different Tale Andrew Wiecek for BioTechniques
Blatantly biased in this pick considering I used to write for BioTechniques, and this was written by my boss who IMHO is a wonderful editor and science writer.  I think for a story that is highly technical and uses multiple sources the structure is a huge issue. This piece flows really well, and makes sense (a little jargony but BTN’s audience is largely grad students and post docs, so understandable) plus it has to do with ancient proteomics, which is a pretty incredible topic.

Writing Pick
Trying to dispel myths and falsehoods is a huge issue in science communication. I liked this post because while it is essentially an article about a new plugin for Chrome that helps debunk ridiculous claims that get made in forwarded emails it also makes some good points about how to confront someone in denial about the truth, and what the facts show.

Bonus Pick
This week I decided to choose the recipients of the 2012 Kavli Science Journalism Awards, which were just announced. If I had to select a favorite from the bunch, I’d go with Michelle Nijhuis’ What is Killing the Bats for Smithsonian Magazine about white nose syndrome.