Science Gossip

Prompted by the Evilutionary Biologist's response to an article in Nature, I have been working on a web site in my insufficient spare time during the previous month. The Evilutionary Biologist makes the good point that the science coverage in newspapers has been terrible, in contrast to the improving coverage by blogs. Not that all science coverage in "traditional media" is terrible, but there is an awful amount of crap written by "journalists" who don't not know what they're talking about, not to mention that so many of them simply rehash press releases and don't even care if they're true.

However, I'm already barely managing to keep up with the science blogs I'm subscribed to right now, and even this is only a miniscule fraction of all the excellent science blogs throughout the World Wide Web. It's going to be much worse for the average person who does not care to spend as much effort on science as I do. Sites such as Science Daily, Eureka! Science News, and Universe Today make it easier to keep up with science news, but much of their content comes from press releases or traditional media sources. The amount of content that is provided can also be overwhelming for the average person: I have trouble keeping up myself. And there is no corresponding web site for blogs, at least not any that would not totally overwhelm any single person with the amount of updated content.

Science Gossip Logo

This is the niche that the new web site Science Gossip is intended to fill. It tries to cover recent science news by linking to good blog articles around the web. It is also meant to be a way for an average person to keep track of interesting news in science, so it deliberately keeps low the number of articles added each day. This could help out someone with only a passing interest in science to keep up with science news as covered by the blogs. For the rest of us, we would still be avidly following science blogs and seeking out new ones.

Science Gossip is also an experiment to see if blogging alone can properly cover science news, without having to depend on traditional media sources such as newspapers. I'm curious if the loss of science coverage in newspapers and television stations would really be no great loss as contended by the Evilutionary Biologist. I'm partial to this idea, but it would be nice to see if it's actually the case. But unlike the Evilutionary Biologist, I think blogs by themselves have a serious problem with reaching a broad audience. There are just too many good science blogs around to keep track of, with articles much better written than those that appear in newspapers; even I have enough trouble keeping up with the science blogs I already follow. Hence Science Gossip.

I don't know how long the experiment will last: perhaps it will go on for only a few months due to lack of interest, or it could end up lasting for a long time such that it couldn't be considered an experiment anymore. For now, the web site is small enough that I can do all the editing myself, where I determine which blog articles should be linked to and whether they should appear on the front page. However, all the current content has been submitted by myself, which means that the sort of blog articles that appear are heavily dependent on what I myself read. It would be really useful if others were to also submit blog articles ...

4 Replies to “Science Gossip”

    1. Thanks! Most of the work right now is just getting enough content so that there's at least some regular updates, although the amount of work will increase drastically if people start submitting lots of blog articles to include.

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