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Re: "Giganotosaurus argentine"



On Fri, 2 Mar 2001 18:09:22   
 Danvarner wrote:
>In a message dated 3/2/01 2:49:16 PM Pacific Standard Time, 
>dinoland@lycos.com writes:
>
><< Watch this report turn out to be right...but, in a conversation with Don 
>Lessem, I was told that the name of this new dinosaur would not be released 
>at all (under no circumstances) until the paper was published (likely 
>sometime later this year).  I doubt that Currie or Coria, or any of the team 
>members, would tell this magazine.  However, it seems the media knows 
>everything these days...
>  >>
>    Steve, This is the second time you have spoken about "the media" lately. 
>Could you please be more specific? I'm having difficulty knowing who or what 
>you are talking about. DV.

Dan,
When was the first time??

Anyway, what I said in the above passage (and likely the first time, also), was 
basically this: I am angered and upset by the fact that the media always seems 
to know about dinosaur specimens (and other fossils) before the actual 
scientific paper comes out.  I know that many of us have expressed this concern 
before on the list (just search for "National Geographic" or "Archaeoraptor" in 
the archives and you'll see what I mean:-))

I don't like the fact that some scientists go to the media with their 
discoveries before the paper is published.  I'm all for popular accounts of the 
fossils in the media, as these accounts often spread the science and the 
importance of the particular discovery to the public in a way that is easy to 
understand.  However, the paper should come first.

I say this, in part, because I do consider myself part of the "media."  I guess 
I'm technically a professional reporter, since I do get paid for writing 
articles for my local newspaper.  During the summer (and much of the school 
year) I write sports for my newspaper.  I'm there almost everyday, and I know a 
little about how the media works.  The media doesn't go searching for these 
paleo stories most of the time.  More times than not, the paleontologist or 
scientist goes to the media with his or her discovery, hoping to gain attention 
and sometimes get money.  Most scientists are good about not doing this, but 
some are not.  That is my concern, and that is what I am meaning when I write 
these passages.  

Steve

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Steve Brusatte-DINO LAND PALEONTOLOGY
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