Hypotheses that flatter our own preconceptions and biases are incredibly seductive, and the temptation to accept them at face value can be nearly irresistible. But in a world that seems to be drifting away from analytical rigor and fact-based decision-making, the ability to resist that temptation is more essential than ever.
A neuroscientist tries to explain his research to different audiences, from a five year-old to a colleague.
How much can a single editor distort the citation record? Investigation documents rogue editor’s coercion of authors to cite his journal, papers.
Do scholarly and scientific publishers risk more than they realize when they embrace modern media spectacle and seek to marginalize the PDF?
The new book by Tom Nichols, “The Death of Expertise,” is not perfect, but it is an important exploration of existential threats to science, education, and representative democracy.
Are we thinking about predatory publishing the wrong way? Are researchers deliberately choosing these journals, and if so, what are the incentives driving this decision?
One from the vaults — a well worn Xerox copy of the sort of humor scientists used to share back in the ancient days of the early 1990’s.
President Obama has published three articles in six months in three of the world’s most prestigious scholarly journals. Is it appropriate? With these precedents, what happens when the politics of the President conflicts with the politics of science?
A fragmented map found stuffed up a Scottish chimney is restored into a meaningful historical document.
As we’ve absorbed and adopted the information economy assumptions peddled by Silicon Valley, social isolation has increased, the definition of “fact” has become slippery, and the scientific record has become more superficial, less reliable, and more transitory. In fact, confirmation bias seems to have become our main operating principle. Maybe a change in economic incentives and greater skepticism across the board could help — all driven by more humans at the controls.
Along with recent hair-pulling about fake news has come renewed awareness of the concept of “filter bubbles,” as many of us acknowledge the risk of political information “bubbles” following the US presidential election. Where we once bemoaned “filter failure” – […]
Dismayed by the loss of trust in facts, and seeming preference for half-truths that appears to be driving our political present, Robert Harington decided to catch up on his reading over the weekend, and stumbled across a stimulating article in Publishers Weekly, entitled How to Sell Nearly a Half-Million Copies of a Poetry Book, by Anisse Gross.
John Oliver gives 2016 the thrashing it so clearly deserves.
The age of information abundance may have fundamental flaws — barriers to entry that create false equivalence; dissemination tools that conflate fake information with responsible sources; self-reinforcing loops of conspiracy and paranoia; and social fragmentation that makes societal disruption more likely. What can be done? Here are a few ideas.
A post election look at what publishers can learn from the process.