On BioScience and Life and Such

Ten things we didn’t communicate that well

In Uncategorized on May 5, 2009 at 5:34 pm

post to news.thinkgene.com

Title page of the first edition of On the Orig...

As life scientists, we failed in our communication with the rest of the world when our messages became:

1.Survival of the strongest (which was supposed to be survival of the fittest)
2. Abortion is ending human life (when what it really means is not starting one)
3. Our DNA-sequence determines our future (when all it does is give the starting point for our individual continuously changing phenotype).
4. Race is not determined by genes (when it fact it most certainly is).

Update – additions:

5. Science has all of the answers (from FredCoBio).

6. Genetic modification is something only done in the lab (from MrGunn).

7. Most published research findings turn out to be false, and this is the cost of innovation (from MrGunn).

8. “We will cure X in Y years.” Seems a lot of the public has become disillusioned because we still haven’t cured cancer or AIDS, or “made good” on stem cell research (from Shirley Wu, more here).

9. Any exercise will help you lose weight. When the truth is that the exercise needs to be extensive and the right type.

10. Carbohydrates and fat are bad for you. When the truth is that we need a balanced diet containing both fat and carbohydrates (as well as all the other things).

More comments and suggestions most welcome.

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  1. […] I am putting together a list of things lost in translation between science and the public. The full list is compiled here. […]

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